Welcome to my monthly series…Herbs and Children! I have been learning so much about herbs and how to treat a variety of illnesses, infections, skin conditions, emotions, and other issues in children. While I am far from an expert, I do feel as though I have a lot of great information to share with you that can then use to do your own further research. Each month, I will share a specific “condition” or health concern and the specific herbs that are safe and effective to use on and in your children to address these conditions. Be sure to read to the end of each post where I link up the previous posts in the series.
Fevers. Loaded topic to be sure. Some people insist on “breaking them” with medicine while others see fevers as useful and just let nature take its course.
The truth is, fevers ARE useful. I wrote ALL about it in a post titled Childhood Fevers. It is packed with information so I suggest you head over and read it. This post will be here when you get back!
The one thing that post does not address is how to support fevers with various herbs. I see “supporting” fevers as something in between the “break it” camp and the “leave it be” camp. It allows the body to do what it is designed to do while offering comfort to the ill child.
With cold, flu, and virus season well on its way, what better time to share some information so you can prepare your natural medicine cabinet!
Let’s look at essential oils first.
To help make a child more comfortable, there are certain essential oils that prove particularly useful in stabilizing the body (think fever with chills), promoting relaxation, and supporting the nervous system.
Support essential oils include:
- Tea Tree
- Eucalyptus Radiata
- Roman Chamomile
To use, prepare a bowl of lukewarm water. Add two drops of any of the essential oils to the water. You can mix and match. Using a soft cloth or sponge, gently give your child a sponge bath taking care to ensure that the parts of the body you are not wiping with the cloth remain covered.
What about herbs? Which ones can help support a child with a fever and how best to use them?
A trusted herbalist friend swears by the following herbs:
I personally have used Burdock, Dandelion, and Echinacea with great success. You can prepare a tincture from any of those herbs or a combination of them (see my Herbs and Children overview post) and add it to water or juice and give it to your child every 3-4 hours. The typical amount given is based on age and weight so ask your trusted medical practitioner before giving your child an herbal tincture.
Ginger can provide a lot of support when added to a lukewarm bath. It opens the pores, allows the body to perspire, and ultimately helps the toxins release from the body.
I hope this gives you a starting point to do some additional research and have supplies on hand when fever strikes. I would LOVE to share more but the governmental powers that be won’t like it since I am not yet a credentialed herbalist. But that will change soon….