Getting through the colder months without your little one coming down with a bug or two seems to be near on impossible. When our children are feeling run down, unwell or generally out of sorts, the days can seem very long and the nights even longer.

While a flu shot from the doctor can help keep away some of the virus strains, picking up a sniffle or cough from other kids can be all too easy at this time of year.

It’s never nice to see your children feeling sick, but I think it’s even harder when they’re very young and struggle to tell you exactly what they’re feeling. These are my go-to tips for handling the littlest members of the household during sick season:

  • Reach for the tissues – it’s particularly hard to manage a running nose before your child knows how to blow it; keep plenty of tissues around the house, in your bag, in the car and in your pockets so you can quickly wipe any nasal drip before it builds up
  • Steam it out – Create a steam bath over the sink or bowl using steaming hot water, take a warm shower with your little one and sit in the steam for a while or use a steam device or humidifier in your child’s room overnight to help provide some relief; I like to add a few drops of eucalyptus oil
  • Dress them up – be extra diligent with keeping extremities warm; have plenty of socks, hats and gloves or mittens around so you can grab them easily, layer outfits with singlets and use slippers for cold floors at home
  • Visit the pharmacistI always keep a few bottles of kids cough relief liquid in the medicine cabinet to help soothe a chesty cough, which can often keep the whole house up at night
  • Try to limit the damage – when anyone in the household comes down with a bug, be extra diligent with things like handwashing, not sharing utensils and avoiding kissing on the mouth so you can minimise the spread of infection or reinfection
  • Food and fluids – of course what we give our kids to eat and drink is important all year round, but even more so when they’re run down; keeping up the fluids is so important especially if their bug has left them without an appetite; I reach for lots of water and milk – and even add bananas or berries to the milk to make a nutrient-rich smoothie
  • Be prepared – use a thermometer to keep an eye on their temperature and have the numbers for your GP, their after hours support service or emergency services easily to hand if you suspect there is something more to your little one’s illness than a basic cold or flu

What’s your top tip? SHARE with us in the comments below.

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  • I would also add to ensure they get plenty of sleep. Putting them to bed just an extra 15 mins a night adds up to hours and hours of extra sleep and rest over the course of a cold/flu and helps their little bodies fight the bugs and recover.


  • Great tips. Practice them all, except for buying cough syrup, I do buy Panadol though. For coughing we use Manuka or Raw honey mixed with cinnamon, it works really soothing. Not all my kids get the flu jab, but my youngest who’s more prone to infections does.
    I also have always a bottle of hydrogen peroxide in the cupboard, which I do in the ears by the onset of colds. It kills 4 out of 5 colds/flues in the butt.
    In general good nutrition helps to prefend from getting colds and flues.


  • our whole house of 6 people all have the dreaded cold, chesty cough, aches and pains, so much fun-NOT


  • Hubby had manflu. I dosed him up with TLC, Vit C, plenty of fluids including rosehip tea or lemon water and plenty of rest. Vit D (sunshine) helps too,


  • My 16 year old has the deep cough, runny nose, blocked nose… the works. And we’re all fighting it off. I’m spraying eucalyptus in his room, spraying door handles, etc. and using hand sanitizer at every opportunity.


  • These are great tips!! I find investing in a vaporizer has been a huge help during the winter sick season.


  • Great tips – and don’t forget the flu jab.


  • A healthy diet and lots of liquids is essential.


  • I am spraying Eucalyptus everywhere, even in the car and disinfecting/sanitising my hands at every opportunity. My son and hubby have both had colds recently and I’m doing everything to avoid it. Lots of water too!!!


  • I use the Aloe Vera tissues and at night, when they go to bed I put under their noses and on their lips pure lanolin (or nipple cream) and that helps stop their noses and lips getting too dry and cracked


  • I find constant wiping of a nose can leave it red and sore …solution aloe vera tissues.


  • I never use cough syrup. We prefer to use a spoon of raw honey/ manuka honey for a sore throat. Honey with cinnamon added and lemons are good for colds and flues.


  • Be careful of cough medicine. It’s dngerous for small children.


  • i already do many of these things at home, but a good reminder for a few things I sometimes forget


  • When miss 4 comes down with the flu, I reach for my homemade chicken broth and make her ginger, lemon and honey tea. The broth is liquid gold especially when you don’t feel like eating. It’s jammed packed with everything good and like I say to my daughter, “your tummy’s having a party”, lol. I also give her special honey (Manuka) which has antibacterial qualities. It makes all the difference in my household and I know they will in yours too


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