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Registered Medical Herbalist
Luzia Barclay
DBTh MIRCH
Tel: 01722 330663

Herbs for children? Yes please!

26-01-2017
There are lots of great remedies that can help children recover from all sorts of common illnesses. Here are a few of my favourites.

Fennel tea is a very effective, safe and gentle natural remedy for small children who suffer from colicky pain.

It calms and relaxes the digestive tract and has anti-spasmodic properties.

In older children fennel tea can ease symptoms of irritable bowel syndrome (IBS), especially when taken together with chamomile tea.

Anxiety and stress in school children can lead to symptoms like stomach ache, for which fennel and chamomile tea have a soothing effect with no harmful side effects.

Restlessness and hyperactivity can be helped by reducing or cutting out sugar and refined carbohydrates.

Lime blossom and lemon balm are particularly beneficial to ease these symptoms. They also have a calming effect.

Lime blossom can be drunk as a tea or added to the bath water, especially if the child is very small and can’t easily settle down.

I grew up in a family where herbs were always the first choice for minor health problems.

If any of us had a fever we were given “Wadenwickel”, i.e. cold wet towels wrapped around the lower legs to cool us down and to draw the heat away from the head in order to avoid convulsions. The mildly cooling effect made a fever more comfortable.

An increase in body temperature must not be suppressed with pharmaceutical fever reducing medications because it is a powerful healing response.

Herbs like lime blossom and elder flowers have a sweat inducing and thus cooling effect. Manage a fever but don’t suppress it.

Runny noses, coughs and colds are common in young children because their immune systems are growing and developing.

These symptoms can be helped with thyme tea, licorice tea, elder flower tea and diluted peppermint and eucalyptus oil.

Elderberry juice tastes delicious and is a great anti-viral drink for young and older children.

The HMRA advises not to give Echinacea to children under 12 years because of possible allergic reactions. In Germany the minimum age is 2 years.

I am not aware that there are any age restrictions for the bee product propolis. This is a great remedy that strengthens the immune system and helps to prevent bacterial and viral infections.

We hear more and more about the problems of bacterial resistance with the overuse of antibiotics.

If we want antibiotics to still work in the future for serious infections, we need to use them extremely sparingly.

Natural effective remedies are therefore a very wise choice for children now and in the future, and of course for adults as well.
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