Cough Remedies for Kids

| Modified on Mar 09, 2024
Oregano Juice
Posted by Daren (Leyte Philippines) on 03/09/2024

My 1 year old half filipino son has had an on again/off again cough for 6 months. He's been through several courses of antibiotics. His mother and I became tired of giving our son antibiotics because we know the negative effects of doing that frequently and he's still so young that we don't want to destroy his good gut bacteria, and he would never fully recover from the antibiotics, it would just make him kind of better for awhile then come back.

I learned that in the Philippines a common remedy for children's cough is oregano juice. Here is how you make it, it's so simple! Use 5 small leaves of FRESH oregano. The small leaves are about the size of a U.S. quarter or 10 piece peso. If using the bigger leaves then use 2-3 leaves. (this type of oregano is the kind with thicker leaves, with a fury underside, typically referred to as greek/indian/mexican oregano)

You rinse them well under clean running water, and rub ur fingers on all surfaces of the leaf to clean it well. Then set the leaves aside. Boil a small amount of water. about 1/4 cup. once the water begins to boil remove it from flame. Put your cleaned oregano leaves in a coffee mug or bowl, pour the hot water over the leaves, just enough water to give you a couple tablespoons of liquid. Then mash/squeeze the leaves using fingers or spoon very well until the water turns brownish/yellowish/orangish. do the mashing/squeezing for about 5 minutes. Then remove and discard the leaves.

You will be left with oregano juice liquid. You can add a little sugar to it to make it taste sweet for a baby. (But do NOT use honey for baby)

Give this liquid to baby 3 times daily. (morning, afternoon, night)

My son was so sick he was coughing all night, and it was the painful kind of cough. this went on for about 6 months and I became very worried about pneumonia.

The oregano brought him back to normal in about 5-7 days. We also put him on a rice porridge diet during that same time. (just boiled rice until very soft/mush with enough water to make it like a soup. kind of like oatmeal.) We also added a pinch of sea salt to each meal.

Oregano has been proven scientifically to kill many of the viruses/bacteria that cause pneumonia. This is listed on the NIH gov website. It is also synergistic in it's effect when used with traditional antibiotics.

I feel MUCH better now knowing that I have this remedy to use for next time he gets sick. It's very effective and I don't have to worry about wrecking his natural immune system with antibiotics everytime. I believe antibiotics from the doctor have their place and time but just not everytime, and especially not repeatedly for months.

Apple Cider Vinegar + Coconut Oil
Posted by Julie C (Louisiana ) on 01/07/2024

My daughter who rarely detoxes ('gets sick')- finally did last week and although no fever she had a cough and runny nose. A dry cough that kept her up. I did all the things to keep her feeling good, warm baths with salts etc. I looked on EC and found the ACV + honey treatment for cough. So I gave her the 1tbsp of ACV and 1 large tbsp of honey in warm water and it really helped her coughing fits. I gave this to her a few times a day.

On day 3 the cough was persistent, so I tried the coconut oil remedy to hopefully get her to rest....I used organic non refined coconut oil before she went to bed, well the texture was not appealing to her at all - lol - BUT she didn't cough once until the morning!! She was able to get some good sleep finally and let her body heal! That morning I decided to combine the remedies and make an ACV+honey+coconut oil tea and she drank it - that day the coughing was better and better. I gave it to her last night before bed and not one cough for sound sleep and healing again! I also added a pinch of cayenne for good measure! It seems like combinations of treatments do best for us. Thanks everyone for your anectdotes and contributions! Happy healthy 2024 to all ....xo

Posted by Eve (NJ) on 11/12/2023

This does work. Last year my daughter, then 2.5 years old, was coughing a lot at night. Moms at our homeschool co-op told me about it, and as they had several children, I decided to try it. To my surprise, vicks rubbed on the bottom of her feet, then applying socks, did indeed stop the coughing for many hours. I tried it again this year and it's worked several times. I also tried it on my 7 year old and it helped, and even tried it on myself, with success once or twice. I don't think it works on every cough every time, but it CAN work. Try it, you've got nothing to lose. For the record, we had to go purchase vicks for this. I don't have any over the counter stuff in my house. But we needed sleep so we tried it and it worked.

Coconut Oil
Posted by Mmsg (Somewhere, Europe) on 11/05/2017

Cheryl, I would first get a doctor's diagnosis for such a young 'un and then go from there.

Coconut Oil
Posted by Cheryl (Vallejo Ca) on 11/05/2017

Hi, can you tell me what I should use on my 18 month old daughter for wheezing and a bad cough? I can hear it horrible in her chest, no other symptoms and I have tried tea w honey, steam a vaporizer and humidifier it's been almost a month and no sign of letting up. She also has an inhaler that's doing her no good.

Coconut Oil
Posted by Mama To Many (Tn) on 11/03/2017

I have seen coconut oil work very well for my adult son when ever he exhibits symptoms of a virus. I learned about that treating mono with coconut oil (amazing cure) and it works so well for him it is a go-to. I recently used it to treat a cough he had. I am learning that with him I should just start with coconut oil.

My six year old has had a cough/cold a couple of weeks ago and it seemed to start back up a couple of days ago. (Same virus, new virus, allergy, I don't really know.) Well, I cut to the chase. I gave him a teaspoon of coconut oil yesterday morning and last night before bed. (Also used onion by the bedside - works every time.) He didn't cough all night. He was coughing when he got up. I gave him another teaspoon of coconut oil. He isn't fond of it - I chase it with something useful - like a spoonful of honey (also good for a cough.) Or just give it to him right before a meal. I just realized it is lunchtime and he hasn't coughed all morning.

~Mama to Many~

Posted by Teena (Victoria) on 06/29/2017 233 posts

Last night my boys had a terrible barking cough. I put Vicks on the bottoms of their feet and covered with socks. I also have them each a large soon of warm honey with cinnamon mixed in. This gave 6 hours of sleep (relief) before it started again. I am also giving doses of vitamin c, zinc and vitamin D3. We are still fighting the bugs but as I am reading I realize I was lucky to get 6 hours of relief so will do again tonight, also excited to use recipe advised by earth clinic for homemade. Oh to protect myself I am putting drops of oregano oil under tongue and sucking on cloves, unfortunately the kids do not cooperate with any of these meds..

Garlic, Ginger, Turmeric, Honey
Posted by Steph C. (Missouri) on 03/07/2017

Garlic, Ginger, Turmeric, Honey for Nighttime Cough

My children both have an absolute aversion to cough medicine (natural or otherwise). After a horrible incident with my 4-year-old, I desperately searched the webs for a non-ingested remedy, but never quite had all the ingredients, so I crafted a remedy of my own, as inspired by a multitude of sources.

This remedy is a poultice, to be placed on the upper chest above the heart.

Ingredients: 1 clove garlic, crushed and finely minced; 1 tsp fresh ginger, crushed and finely minced; 1/4 tsp turmeric; 1 tsp raw honey; 1 tsp olive oil; 1 tsp flour; gauze or paper towel (or anything to place mixture on); surgical tape. Combine garlic, ginger, turmeric, and honey. Dust with a bit of the flour and roll it a bit. Drizzle with a bit of the oil and then dust with a bit more flour. Continue alternating with flour and oil until a paste forms. You don't want the mixture to be runny, but you also don't want it to be dried and doughy. Once the desired consistency is reached, smear mixture on gauze and apply to upper chest and secure with tape.

Notes: I've used this successfully on a 4 year old and a 7 year old. One had a wet, mucous-filled cough; and the other had a dry, hacking cough. This remedy worked equally well, as in ZERO coughs all night for either child. I thought, at first, it was a fluke. But, I have now used this remedy multiple times, and the results have been consistent. Adding this one to my toolbox.

Mama's Antiviral Fudge Recipe
Posted by Mama To Many (Tennessee) on 08/27/2016

There is a cough/cold going around. My daughter had it and I thought it was allergy and treated it as such and it really hung on for a while. Then my 5 year old son started to cough and I realized that it was probably a virus - I was hearing of others in the neighborhood with it. The cough was the most irritating at night. I found that 1/2 onion cut up and placed by the pillow usually kept the coughing at bay all night. Then I remembered coconut oil works for viruses. I mixed up a fudge for my son and fed it to him 3-4 times a day. It was easy to get him to take and I could tell a big difference in 24 hours. I am taking the fudge too since it has blackstrap molasses and coconut oil in it. I try to take those things often and this is a delicious way to take it. I notice that it seems to have completely eliminated sugar cravings for me.

Antiviral Fudge Recipe

  • 1/2 cup extra virgin coconut oil (soft)
  • 1/2 cup blackstrap molasses
  • 1/4 cup peanut butter (I am sure almond butter would be excellent)
  • 2 T. raw cacao powder

Mix together. Lightly sprinkle the top with Celtic sea salt (or Himalayan pink.)

Pour/Spread into an 8x8 pan lined with wax paper.

Refrigerate for an hour. Cut into 24 squares. Each square has about 1 teaspoon of coconut oil in it, which is the amount I want in one dose for my child.


~Mama to Many~

Apple Cider Vinegar
Posted by Bb (Illinois) on 05/30/2016

Had family in town for Memorial Day and one of the cousins brought along a head cold with tickling repetitive night cough and pink eye that my 3.5 year-old got :( Before bed I wiped his eyes out with 50/50 hydrogen peroxide and warm water a few times (he didn't complain of stinging or anything), and also dribbled some HP into each ear (3%).

Then at 3am with the persistent dry-cough keeping us both up, I made a concoction of 1 Tspn raw apple cider vinegar with 1 teaspoon of raw honey and a bit of warm water to melt honey-- equaled 10mls of syrup. I also wiped his eyes out again with the 50/50 hydrogen solution. In the morning his eyes weren't even crusty, and showed no signs of gunk (maybe a tiny corner later in the day) and he was in perfect spirits with no runny nose, just a little stuffiness remained.

His cough was still present when reclined, so I gave him another 10ml Apple cider vinegar/honey concoction after a warm bath, and gave him 0.5mls of sublingual melatonin at bed (1ml tablet broken in half), and he slept deeply without coughing all night. I don't generally use melatonin for my kids, but the pediatrician had recommended a natural cough syrup that was basically made up of 'dark honeys', a minimal amount of vitamin C and zinc, and 0.5 mg of Melatonin, so I mimicked the ingredients but with a healthier version, IMO. And now we have our happy healthy boy back! I would say all thanks to the HP and ACV :)

Posted by Mama To Many (Tennessee, Usa) on 12/09/2015

My four year old is getting over a cold. Last night he was coughing in his sleep. I got out of bed and went to get him something for his cough. But it was dark and cold. I had just put castor oil in my eyes and couldn't see well, even when I turned on the bathroom light. I was not finding my cough "go-to's" (a homemade vapor rub, garlic oil, eucalyptus oil, etc.) But I did find, through my blurry eyes, my bottle of frankincense essential oil. I put a drop on a cotton ball and placed it near his head. He coughed a couple of more times in the next 60 seconds and didn't cough again the rest of the night. I was so happy to climb back into my warm bed!

Frankincense is kind of expensive and not in everyone's natural medicine cabinet. But I mention it in case you find yourself bleary eyed in the cold looking for a cough remedy and happen upon some frankincense essential oil!

We had actually discovered this helped once on vacation when I didn't have every last remedy with me, but must have had frankincense with me for some reason. I thought, who knows, maybe it will help, and it helped then too, to stop an irritating cough. Just one drop on a cottonball, near the head!

~Mama to Many~

Apple Cider Vinegar
Posted by Layla (Norway) on 12/07/2015


You want to watch your intake, especially for a child. For some people a moderate daily amount is fine, for others consuming ACV daily is too often and they end up with problems like corroded teeth or bleeding stomach. It is vinegar, after all. I use it myself to address specific problems when they arise, otherwise not more than on salads and such.

Flaxseed Tea
Posted by Cher (Virginia, US) on 04/12/2015

Flaxseed tea worked wonders for my eight year son who had kept us up 3 nights in a row. We tried everything with only temporary results. We gave him the tea right before bed. He coughed for about 20 minutes and then slept all through the night. God Bless the person who discovered this and thank you!

EC: Recipe from Grannyguru, AZ:

"You put about a tablespoon or so of whole dark brown flaxseeds (for some reason golden seeds do not work anywhere near as well) into 2 cups of water and boil it until it just begins to thicken. It will seem to take forever, then suddenly it thickens quickly, so the minute you notice it thickening, remove it from the heat.

Add lemon juice or vitamin c and sweetener, like grade b maple syrup, or even just sugar. Drink. I found I did not like it when it was thickened, but I could put it in a thermos and keep it by my bed, and it would break down into just a soothing liquid, but would work just as good as the thick syrup I didn't like.

And of course if you add honey and vitamin c it tastes like apple juice."

Apple Cider Vinegar
Posted by Andrei (Oklahoma City, Oklahoma) on 01/06/2015

I just want to thank Earth Clinic and the contributors who advised me to mix ACV with fruit juice so I can make my son take it to cure his cough and cold. It did mask the taste. I have also used ACV as dip for roasted fish and meat and my son really liked it! It has now become my favorite dressing/dip for steamed veggies and fresh fruits.

There's no daily intake limit for ACV right? I am planning to mix it with fruit juices as refreshment even if we have no ailments. Is that okay? Thanks again!

Apple Cider Vinegar
Posted by Linterest (Brisbane, Australia) on 11/05/2013

My son has had a cough for several weeks. He has had a diagnosis of mild pneumonia and 2 course of anti-biotics. The cough has remained. I tried another apple cider vinegar remedy on another site. I decided to check what works for most earth clinic peoples and found that generally apple cider vinegar and honey in warm water seemed successful. I made him drink 2 Tablespoons of apple cider vinegar and 1 teas of honey (I am a mean mum and I am strict on sugar). It honestly worked a treat and his cough seemed to have cleared up in a day!

Apple Cider Vinegar
Posted by Faith (Kerikeri, New Zealand) on 11/19/2012

My 5 year old daughter has had a very persistent cough, for over 2 weeks, the last few nights have been very long, as she coughs all night, to the point of gagging, all other remedies were not helping, have today given her 3 doses of 1 teaspoon apple cider vinegar and 1 teaspoon of honey and a dash of hot water to dissolve honey, she drinks it rather happily, and it has made a huge difference today, her coughing has been cut by more than half, I would fully advise everyone to at least give it a try. Am hoping for a quiet night of sleep, so far so good!!

Apple Cider Vinegar
Posted by Brenda (Charlotte, Nc) on 11/11/2012

2 Tablespoons water, 1 Tablespoon Apple Cider Vinegar, 1 Tablespoon honey. It worked! My daughter has the flu, and has been coughing non stop for days (a dry, non-prductive cough. ) I tried vapor rub, plain honey, cough medicine, and finally her nebulizer. Nothing worked. I saw a recipe for the acv and honey and was thrilled to see the success rate. I am SO relieved, plus I now have a bit of silence now and then ;)

Posted by Melissa (Alberta, Canada) on 03/26/2012

I never write in to these things, but the red onion recipe is great.

I have a 4 year old who has been battling a nasty cough at night. It was horrible, she would cough so hard that she would throw up. I made the red onion recipe (sliced the RED onion and put a little honey on top of each slice and then stacked them neatly in a bowl. Within a few hours the mixture was quite runny... So don't overdo it, with the honey! ). She woke up at 11:00pm, hacking and coughing, so I gave her 1 teaspoon (even though it hadn't been the 15 hours a previous poster had recommended... More like 8-10ish). She went straight back to sleep without coughing, but woke up again about an hour later coughing up a storm. I gave her 1 tsp. Again and she went straight back to sleep. She woke up this morning (after sleeping until 9:30!!! Without a cough) claiming that she feels much better.

It does taste onion-y though, but the honey disguises it nicely.

EC: Remember, no honey for babies 12 months and under.

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