When my kids get sick it always moves into a hacking cough. They’re the ones choking into their elbow while people look at me in horror. Yes, I’m the mom with the children hacking all over the place. I’m that person. Yup, sorry. Excuse the spittle.
Any cold, flu, pox, or sniffle ends with a cough. Not a cough that’s over in three weeks like the poster on the doctor’s wall says it will be. Rather their cough hangs in there for three solid months. My daughter is prone to croup, my son to bronchitis, and me - I’m prone to staying up all night, self medicating with gilmore girls and obscene amounts of coffee.
In all of this, I’ve learned a few things. In fact, I can get rid of a cough in two weeks, no heavy doses of antibiotics needed.
First cold, damp air is a must. If your child is terrifying you with that barking cough or lack of congestion - get them outside if it’s in winter, turn on fans, your ac, a cold mist humidifier that blows into their face. Bundle them up for this, otherwise it’s torture, don’t traumatize your kids. You can always put them in the car with the windows down and Frank Turner on the stereo - just be sure to censor the swearing. Okay, so not Frank Turner, how about Adele, play Hello for them.
I smear vicks and theives oil all over their chest, back, and feet. Probably you should put socks on after this, so you don’t have grease stains everywhere. But, you have kids. The likelihood that you have grease stains in bizarre places is highly probable.
Local, raw honey. If you don’t have this, get it. Then put some on a spoon, coax your naive child into taking some - this will never happen again. Suddenly, this will become the worst thing you have ever done in their life and they will tell everyone they meet about the time their mom tried to kill them with honey. It will stop the cough though, and at least you’ll get a good night sleep - that one time. For all other nights, it’s probably best to mix it with water, lemon, and a slight dash of cayenne. Or I mix raw honey with applecider vinegar and a dash of cayenne.
You could also have them snort salt water, it’s an old trick my grandma used to do, but I just felt like I was drowning. I have yet to try it with my kids. I’m sure we’ll get to that point though. Then you’ll have to wonder if it was to fix their cough or some ancient form of torture.
Bone broth. If you’re kids are sick this should be the first thing on your stove. Add lots of garlic and soft vegetables, it will nourish their body, fill them with nutrients, and hydrate them. It’s the ultimate win.
Eventually they’ll get better. They’ll stop coughing, people will stop looking at you like you are sharing the plague at Trader Joes, and life will go back to normal. You know, when you yell at them to stop watching TV and not kick the ball in the house and stop hitting their sister. Never mind. Ignore the tips. Let them cough. Give them ice cream and prolong the misery. They’ll tell stories about how you’re the best mom and they’ll have fabulous short lives.