32 answers

What to Give to a Coughing 14 Month Old?

My son is recovering from viral bronchiolitis. We have him on antibiotics, and are doing breathing treatments with albuterol 3 times a day. My question is does anyone know if there is some safe cough suppressant to give him. The cough is breaking up, so he's been coughing a lot harder the past day or 2, and he'll cough so hard that he throws up. My husband is concerned that he'll start coughing up blood. I know that it hurts him to cough, and I wish there were something I could give him. When I asked the doctor who diagnosed him (not his normal pediatrician, I had to take him to a doctor's office that was open late) the doctor said he didn't like prescribing cough syrup to a boy so young. Any suggestions would be greatly appreciated!

1 mom found this helpful

What can I do next?

So What Happened?™

Thank you to everyone who responded to me! Before now, I had never heard of the Vicks on the bottoms of the feet. I tried that, and it worked wonders. He's still got a little bit of a cough, but it's getting so much better, the humidifier helped too, and I'm sure the antibiotics are finally kicking in!! Thanks again!!

Featured Answers

You've already had some good suggestions. Also, realize it's okay if they vomit. Not fun for you, but that's their body's way of eliminating the mucus. I would also try kids chicken soup, the salt helps ease their irritated throats and coughing.

BUT, DO NOT GIVE COUGH MEDICINE TO ANY KIDS!!!!!
I have a friend whose 16 year old (yes, 16 yrs., not 16 months), almost died last year, because the antibiotic he was given combined with the cough syrup suppressed his brain and body functions to a point where his heart almost stopped and he was almost in a coma. It was only his first dose! And it was the correct prescribed dose. If they had listened to the doc who said just have him rest, and not taken him directly to ER, he would be dead. Some people, especially kids, have some sort of weakness to these medicines (which are often given together), and the results can be deadly. That's why so many doctors are saying not to give kids cough medicine now.

1 mom found this helpful

The age for cold/cough medicines has recently risen-to 8? i'd try a little honey. 1/2 a spoonfull. it's thick and will soothe his throat.

I echo what many other mom's have already said - they don't recommend suppressants to children so young anymore. I would use the Vick's Baby Rub on his chest and back as that often helped my son. Also, my son has asthma so when he has a flair and we use the albuterol, they often also recommend a humidifier. They recommend using a cool mist humidier for babies that get coughs and colds also. I would suggest getting one - you can find them at BabiesRUs, Target, Walmart, etc. Some of them are even really cute like little animals and such so it adds a nice touch to their room. I hope he feels better real soon! It's so hard to watch them cough and be miserable while you feel so helpless!

More Answers

Rx cough syrup is heavy on the alcohol & codeine (hence, not liking to prescribe it to young children). Call your regular Ped and ask the nurse for a safe OTC cough syrup.

They'll *probably* recommend a combo suppressant/expectorant. The suppressant calms the muscles, while the expectorant helps make the coughs productive. Some typical OTC combo's are Infants Robitussin , Infants Dimetapp, Infants Tylenol Cold'n'cough, Infants Motrin Cough/Flu.

If they do...remember...
- ALWAYS go by weight, not age.
- Double check active ingredients. Guaifenesin & Dextromethorphan are the most common expectorant and suppressants out there. Then look for any others. Acetaminophen and Ibuprofen can be taken together, but you don't want to double up on either...if you're already giving one for fever.
- The nurse should be able to tell you the correct dosage by weight.

* Any good hospital has a nurse advice line...they can also look up weight/dosages and give good recommendations. Obviously a children's hospital will have you talking with a pediatric nurse...but ANY good consulting nurse can flip through the book and look up the chart on medications and dosages. They're available 24 hours a day, and they're free.

** Honey is an at home remedy for coughs....DO NOT give it to your infant. But a couple years down the road, or for yourself, keep it in mind...especially for minor coughs. This sounds like a cough that may be breaking ribs, so that's not you either...just a general FYI.

Good Luck!!
R

2 moms found this helpful

Hylands makes a homeopathic cough syrup with honey. It worked well for my son and the great thing about homeopathics is that they work with the body. If it isn't what the body needs nothing will happen, but they work well if it is. Check with your local health food store.

1 mom found this helpful

Vick's Baby Rub on bottom of feet, back, chest & take a teaspoon of honey since your littlone is over 12 months.

1 mom found this helpful

One of my children also throws up when he starts to cough hard. It's annoying for us moms but it's nothing to be concerned about. What I found helpful with my kids is honey. I give them a teaspoon of honey a few times a day. The honey coats the airway and the coughing lessens considerably. Since your son is over 1 year of age giving him honey is o.k. You can also give him dark chocolate (the real one with over 70% cocoa content). Chocolate works for one of my sons who doesn't like honey.

My son was coughing so hard and for so long that every muscle in his body was hurting. I hope your son will feel better soon.

M.

1 mom found this helpful

The Vicks on the feet works so go for that one and no otc cough syrup. On another note, DO NOT VACCINATE your baby when they are remotely sick, have been on antibiotics, or give Tylenol before, during or after shots as all have compromised the immune system in some way and the shots could cause a more severe problem than you expected.

We have been through what you are going through so many times with our daughter and know how frightening it is. The breathing treatments with a nebulizer was our only saving grace and there were many times we were having to do them every hour to two hours around the clock because of the asthma that came from reactions to vaccines.

Please make sure YOU have done the research on vaccinations for YOUR child. The AAP recommended schedule of shots for children is too many, too soon. Here are sites and books that I always recommend for people to start their research:

www.909shot.com
www.tacanow.org
www.generationrescue.com

Healing the New Childhood Epidemics: Autism, ADHD, Asthma, and Allergies: The Groundbreaking Program for the 4-A Disorders, by Dr. Kenneth Bock
The Vaccine Book, by Dr. Robert Sears
What Your Doctor May Not Tell You About Childhood Vaccinations, by Dr. Stephanie Cave
Evidence of Harm, by David Kirby

1 mom found this helpful

You've already had some good suggestions. Also, realize it's okay if they vomit. Not fun for you, but that's their body's way of eliminating the mucus. I would also try kids chicken soup, the salt helps ease their irritated throats and coughing.

BUT, DO NOT GIVE COUGH MEDICINE TO ANY KIDS!!!!!
I have a friend whose 16 year old (yes, 16 yrs., not 16 months), almost died last year, because the antibiotic he was given combined with the cough syrup suppressed his brain and body functions to a point where his heart almost stopped and he was almost in a coma. It was only his first dose! And it was the correct prescribed dose. If they had listened to the doc who said just have him rest, and not taken him directly to ER, he would be dead. Some people, especially kids, have some sort of weakness to these medicines (which are often given together), and the results can be deadly. That's why so many doctors are saying not to give kids cough medicine now.

1 mom found this helpful

Hi, there are several senarios here - If his cough is getting worse, and if it sounds liquidy, it's possible that the antibiotics did not work. I would take him back to his regular doctor and see what he or she has to say - maybe another round of meds and you can ask about cough then. I looked at some of your answers and I got to say unless your kid is very different from mine, it would be impossible to get him to drink tea or gargle:-) So what I do is to do nose saline rinse several times a day (have him lay on his back) and a lot of the saline would go in his throat which helps a lot. I am not a doctor, just a mom who has 2 kids and knows what you are going thru- so take this with a grain of salt-- for nighttime, you could try giving him 1/2 or 1/4 of the cough med (over the counter) for children. You can give it to him in a dropper. The OTC meds now are all labeled for older kids, and they apparently do not work for a lot of kids. BUt I got the permission from my kids' pediatritian and they DO work for my kids. I never give them during the day, just once before bedtime. Again, if you don't feel comfortable, don't! Ask your ped, too. Best of luck. Trust me, you are not alone in this cold season and nothing is worse than when your kids are sick (except maybe when you are sick and your kids are sick..).

1 mom found this helpful

Hi R.,
Unfortunately, coughs can last for weeks. However, if your son has viral disease, he shouldn't be on antibiotics since they do not cure viruses. I would go have him checked again by his regualar doctor. When my son had trouble breathing he went on Prednisone for a few days (along with the albuterol or a nebulizer) to help clear his lungs. Meanwhile, cold air humidifier in the room will help him. And use saline in his nose to clear it out. I always gave my son pediatric Robitussin but now their saying that these kinds of medicines are not good for children under 6.

I hope this helps! Good luck!

1 mom found this helpful

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