Honey is now a remedy for night time coughing in children

Honey is now being considered as a remedy for those kids who are unable to sleep during night time due to cough. A study suggests that giving a spoonful of honey to the kids before going to bed may help reliving their cough symptoms.  The parents of these kids also reported that after giving honey, the kids were having cough that is less severe and less frequent.

Dr. Ian Paul, a pediatrician from Pennsylvania State University in Hershey opines that the most common reason for kids’ going to a physician is cough. In his opinion, the present therapies for cough and cold are not very effective and they have potential side effects.  Many of the OTC or Over the Counter cough and cold products have a warning of “do not use” for children who are below four years old. But parents of these kids’ accidently give these types of drugs.

A recent study was carried out by researchers from Israel who randomly assigned 300 kids who are aged from one to five to one of four different night time cough treatments. The kids were given 10 grams of one of three types of honey that included the eucalyptus and citrus based honey or syrup that was made from dates which was sweet but was free from honey half an hour before bedtime. Then through telephone and written surveys the parents reported their ‘kids’ symptoms and how well both they and their kids slept in the night, when their kids took a spoonful of honey or date extract as well as how well they had slept the night before. The parents rated each of the symptoms on a 7-point scale.

The survey found that the cough symptoms and sleep scores fell by 2 points on an average in kids who ate honey compared to a one drop after a spoonful of date extract. The parents also slept better the night after their ‘kids’ honey treatment. Dr. Herman Avner Cohen of Tel Aviv University and their colleagues with the help of funding provided by the Honey Board of Israel has conducted this study.  Some of the possible reasons or explanations for why honey might help ease kids  cough may be due to different types of antioxidants present in honey that include Vitamin – C and flavonoids.   However, honey is not appropriate for kids who are below the age group of one due to the risk of infant botulism.

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