4 Things That Mommy Can Do When The Little One Cough
Oleh: Morinaga Platinum
Cough, although often experienced by the Little One, is not a disease, but rather a symptom of a health disorder. In fact, coughing is actually part of the body's defense mechanism, which is a way of removing foreign objects in the airways. It can be said that coughing is a reflex to protect the lungs which occurs when the nerve fibers end of the airway are irritated by something, such as mucus.
Cough can last up to 2-3 weeks. The Indonesian Pediatrician Association (IDAI) stated that an acute cough in the Little One has a 3 weeks time limit. The most common cause of acute cough experienced by your child is acute respiratory infection (ARI). Generally, ARI is caused by a viral infection. In addition to an acute cough, there is another type of chronic cough which is most commonly caused by allergies.
Although it is self limiting, but when your Little One coughs, he/she will feel uncomfortable, restless during sleep at night, decreased appetite due to sore throat, or will vomit provoked by cough. Of course these things are very disturbing toward your Little One’s daily activities. Here are some tips that can be done to reduce cough:
Enough Food - Drink and Rest
The body needs energy to fight bacterial or viral infections. So, limit your Little One’s activities. Let him/her rest completely. In addition, make sure that your Little One’s nutritional needs are fulfilled properly. To support the body's immune system to be stronger against infections such as colds, provide nutrients that contain nucleotides and lactoferrin.
Nucleotides are proteins that function in enhancing the immune system to fight diseases and infections and support the health of the digestive system. The health of the digestive system of the Little One determines the effectiveness of absorption and distribution of nutrients throughout the body. Nucleotides also play an important role in shaping a good body metabolism.
Whereas lactoferrin plays a role in fighting infection so that your Little One doesn't get sick easily. Why is that? This is caused by various functions of lactoferrin as an antimicrobial, a regulator for iron absorption in the intestine, and regulator of the immune system. Lactoferrin will strengthen your Little One so that he/she is not infected more severely by viruses and bacteria in the respiratory tract so he/she will be prevented from experiencing coughs and colds.
Drink lots of water, especially warm liquids
Upper respiratory tract infections generally cause sputum production to increase. The phlegm will irritate the respiratory tract and cause coughing. Drinking lots of fluids, especially warm ones, will help thin the mucus and keep the mouth and airways from drying out.
Elevate the Head Position
When your Little One is asleep, you should position your head higher than usual. This will make it easier to breathe when coughing.
Honey is actually more effective in dealing with coughing on your Little One than cough medicine that is sold freely on the market. Honey contains 181 natural substances that have antioxidant abilities and the ability to inhibit the growth of microorganisms. This combination can make honey an effective natural medicine. However, avoid giving honey to your Little One who is 1 year old because of the risk of serious food poisoning, namely infant botulism.
Cough is a symptom that must be addressed appropriately. Perform a self-care at home to help relieve your Little One’s breathing. However, if the cough does not heal and is accompanied by other symptoms such as shortness of breath, dehydration, worsening fever, immediately bring your Little One to the doctor.