Cough in Kids: Causes, Symptoms and Home Remedies

Are you worried about persistent cough in your kid? Tried many tips and medicines, but in vain? Don’t worry! We shall help you deal with this problem. Before that, let us understand what a is cough. Cough is the natural mechanism of the body to expel a foreign body. In certain cases, a cough can get prolonged, in an attempt to safeguard the throat. This leads to severe pain and inflammation and can even trigger a vomit. Before the problem gets serious, try these best home remedies for cough for kids, which are quite safe and natural.

Cough in Kids: Causes, Symptoms and Home Remedies

Causes of Cough in Kids:

Before attempting to help your kids with cough control, you must learn about the many causes which lead to this problem:

  • Allergic Reactions.
  • Asthma.
  • Throat Infection.
  • Whooping Cough.
  • Acid Refluxes.
  • Lung Infections.
  • Blockage in Air Channels.
  • Habit Coughing, where the child coughs out of sheer habit.

Symptoms of Cough in Children:

Cough in children is usually accompanied by many other symptoms such as:

  • Irritation In Throat.
  • Dryness in throat.
  • Redness and Itchy Eyes.
  • Teary eyes.
  • Hoarse Voice.
  • Accumulation of Mucus.

Prevention of Cough in Kids:

If you wish to lower future risks of coughing in kids, you are advised to follow these precautions:

  • Try to analyze the root cause of the cough. If it is due to an allergen, keep your kid away from it.
  • Make sure your child is vaccinated on time to prevent serious illness.
  • Keep a humidifier at home to moisten the air and reduce dryness.
  • Offer them lukewarm water instead of refrigerated water if they are allergic to cold.
  • Get them to drink plenty of fluids.
  • Take them to the doctors for regular medical checkups.

Simple Home Remedies for Cough in Children:

1. Honey Syrup:

Cough in Kids: Causes, Symptoms and Home Remedies

Honey is one of the best home remedies for baby cough, especially during a cold or if you have a sore throat. Mix honey with half a lemon. You can give this have this directly or mix it with a mug of warm water. It is shown that using dark coloured honey like Buckwheat honey is quite effective in controlling cough in kids.

2. Steam or Vapor:

Cough in Kids: Causes, Symptoms and Home Remedies

Steam is your cough’s worst enemy. It is advisable to take a hot shower with all vents shut. This will have a brilliant effect on that annoying cough. Also, you can take facial steam. It clears all vascular, sinus and other cold centers. But since this is for your little one, make sure it’s not too hot. But this one is a strict no if your child is asthmatic.

3. Pepper-Honey Tea:

Cough in Kids: Causes, Symptoms and Home Remedies

Hot pepper stimulates the circulation in your body and the mucus becomes less dense making it easier to excrete and dispose of. The ration is one teaspoon of fresh ground pepper and two tablespoons of honey. Put this in your raw tea or warm water, strain and then drink it or the pepper will hurt your throat. Do not have this more than once in a day.

4. Warm Liquids:

Cough in Kids: Causes, Symptoms and Home Remedies

Drinking warm liquids throughout the day like tea, coffee and hot chocolate can help with irritating coughs. It will also keep you hydrated and will help dissolve the mucus. But also keep drinking adequate water with this. Otherwise, your body will become heated and there is a good chance for your temperature shooting up. This is one of the popular home remedies for cold and cough for kids.

5. Ginger:

Cough in Kids: Causes, Symptoms and Home Remedies

The antihistamine and decongestant properties in ginger make it a very useful medicine in treating cold and cough. Drink ginger tea or juice to combat the annoying cough bouts. This treatment must be used with caution in kids. Ginger can cause a burning sensation in very young children and infants, and therefore must be avoided.

6. Cloves:

Cough in Kids: Causes, Symptoms and Home Remedies

Dip some cloves in a small bowl of honey overnight (refrigerate) and have a spoon of the stored honey in the morning. It is very effective in reducing irritation and itch. It also gives relief from the pain that grows after coughing frequently. This is a natural treatment for cough.

7. Cinnamon:

Cough in Kids: Causes, Symptoms and Home Remedies

Cinnamon is also a brilliant spice to help curb coughing bouts. You can make cinnamon flavoured bread or doughnut or simply add it to your tablespoon of honey with a few drops of lemon in it. Cinnamon can be consumed any way you like. For children, adding it to sweet bread is a good idea as they might just refuse to have it for the strong flavour it has.

8. Alcohol:

Cough in Kids: Causes, Symptoms and Home Remedies

As surprising as it sounds, your medicine also has a percentage of alcohol in it. It is very effective in killing bacteria and other antibodies. For your child, what you can do is, mix 10-15 ml of brandy or bourbon in warm milk with honey. This is extremely effective in stopping the cough from developing further. This home remedy is strictly for children above 12 years and must be used with caution.

9. Honey with Warm Milk:

Cough in Kids: Causes, Symptoms and Home Remedies

Hot milk and honey together work brilliantly to reduce the chest pain and discomfort caused in your throat due to coughing rigorously. Have it once when you wake up and again before you go to sleep. This is tasty and your child will not refuse to drink it. It is one of the popular natural cough remedies for toddlers.

10. Ginger and Tulsi:

Cough in Kids: Causes, Symptoms and Home Remedies

Tulsi is also known as holy basil and when combined with ginger makes one of the best Indian home remedies for cough for kids. When you make tea, add honey instead of sugar and boil the water with holy basil and ginger. Or simply add a few drops of ginger. In case it is too spicy for your child then just add more honey and a couple of drops of lemon in it. Drink this thrice a day at least.

These home remedies for cough in kids can offer instant relief. However, you must note that none of these methods works as an alternative to medical treatments. Serious or prolonged coughs must get a proper diagnosis to understand the root cause, instead of waiting for these remedies to work. Also, caution must be exercised before trying them out on young children and babies.


1. Can I Try These Remedies on Infants?

You must note that any home remedy, including those mentioned in the article, must not be tried on babies below 12 months. Even after that, you must speak to a doctor who is well-versed with natural remedies. Certain ingredients can cause allergic reactions in infants below 1 year and can be life-threatening for them.

2. Is it ok to Try an over-Tthe-Counter cough Suppressant for My Child?

When a child doesn’t stop cough, the immediate step we take is to give them a dose of cough syrup. However, you cannot offer self-medication without the advice of a doctor, as these medications contain sleep-inducing agents. Even a slightly higher dosage can pose serious dangers to the child’s health and therefore, must be avoided.

3. Can I Send My Child to School When Having a Cough?

A cough usually indicates an underlying infection. When the child coughs, the germs inside the mouth get expelled out in the form of air or saliva drops. This can infect other children. Also, it is not a great idea to send a child who is continuously coughing. Give them warm food, home medications and plenty of rest.