Do you have a toddler sick with a cold? Relieve toddler cold symptoms fast with these 10 essentials you should always have on hand.
Having a sick little one with overwhelming toddler cold symptoms is absolutely dreadful. It is alarming and unsettling to see your little sweetheart experiencing any discomfort as a loving mother.
All you want is for them to feel better and get back to their usual bubbly, energetic self as quickly as possible!
As a mom of three young children, I have had my fair share of sleepless nights with an ailing toddler. Unfortunately, there’s no magic wand to wave to end their discomfort instantaneously. They’ll have to wait it out.
However, there are some items you can keep in your arsenal of supplies to help alleviate symptoms and ease their discomfort, making their transition back to full health smoother and less miserable for all parties involved.
Here are nine essentials you’ll want to have on hand to kick the butt of toddler cold symptoms.
Toddler Cold Symptoms:
Does My Toddler Have a Cold or COVID?
Suppose you have concerns about your child possibly having COVID. In that case, I recommend taking them to an urgent care facility, like MedExpress, Children’s Express, or to the Emergency room to be tested.
If anything alarming or potentially life-threatening occurs, the medical staff should be able to perform whatever actions are necessary to stabilize your child and nurse them back to health.
Or, if you have COVID, they may skip giving your child a test, assume your child has it since you do, and assess their symptoms and vitals.
In my case, I took my toddlers to MedExpress, where they gave me a rapid test since I also had symptoms and confirmed that I had COVID.
To spare the children the discomfort of the nose swab, they recommended assuming the children had it since I did. But if I felt more comfortable having it confirmed, I could opt to have them tested anyway.
I chose to assume they had it since they were experiencing fevers and vomiting. Thankfully, there weren’t any oxygen or lung-related issues.
Ultimately, we weren’t exhibiting life-threatening complications such as shortness of breath, and they told us there was no prescription or anything for it.
So we were advised to take over-the-counter medicine for our symptoms which consisted of primarily common cold symptoms, a massive sore throat, and nausea/vomiting for the babies.
Toddler Cold Symptoms:
How Long Do Toddler Colds Usually Last?
This answer can vary case by case, but in my experience, it’s usually approximately a week, typically 4-7 days for my little ones, but it has gone on as long as two weeks with my eldest child.
The doctor recommended using saline nasal drops for him during that time, which I strongly do NOT recommend.
If they were given to him around a time when he wanted a drink, the dripping/drainage from the drops going down his throat would prompt him to vomit exorcist-style (no exaggeration at all). This brought on a whole additional set of issues aside from nursing a sick child.
Now, on top of everything else, you’re worried even more about dehydration or if he’s getting enough nourishment because he can’t keep down his fluids. So now you need to sprint through your house, busting out laundry and cleaning vomit off the ceiling (I’m exaggerating now, but you get my point).
Toddler Cold Symptoms:
Toddler Can’t Sleep With Cold
If your toddler struggles to get a good night’s rest or even a midday nap due to extreme discomfort from their cold symptoms, the over-the-counter medications listed below will help ease their symptoms. They will make it easier for them and you to sleep soundly while their symptoms are at bay.
Toddler Cold Symptoms:
What Helps Toddler Colds?
Fevers are incredibly uncomfortable for everyone, especially a helpless little toddler with a limited threshold for dealing with discomfort of any kind. So be sure to check their temperature to determine if they are suffering from a fever.
According to the CDC, a temperature of 100.4° F (38° C) or greater or feeling warm to the touch indicates a fever. According to our pediatrician, a temperature over 104° F means your child needs to be seen by a medical professional.
I personally love this particular thermometer! It's no touch, all you do is point it at their forehead, and it provides you with an accurate temperature reading in one second. It's so much easier and more efficient than all the other options.
2. Fever reducer
Children's Motrin is excellent to have on hand for relieving pain and reducing fevers.
There are also options for fever-reducing suppositories, and I find it most helpful to have both. My toddler son is much less fussy than my toddler daughter, and he'll gladly take the liquid medicine.
On the other hand, his sister will not, so suppositories are a great alternative to ensure she gets her medicine.
I also found that if my toddlers are feverish AND nauseated, the suppositories are better suited for bringing down their temperature. Otherwise, they will vomit the liquid fever reducer back up within a few minutes.
3. NoseFrida Snot Sucker
In my experience, the NoseFrida Snot Sucker is the absolute best nasal aspirator to thoroughly clear babies' and toddlers' nasal passages and give them a decent amount of break time from their runny noses.
I was appalled when I first learned about it and sucking the snot, but it works so great, seriously.
You put the snot straw (which collects the snot) into their nose, and inside there's a little sponge that works like a cork and blocks the snot from traveling through the snot straw up to the mouthpiece when you perform suction on it. You can read a complete description of the parts and how it works here.
It provides much better control of the suction. It also provides thorough suction to clear drainage really well compared to the typical nasal aspirator bulb used in hospitals or even the electric/battery-operated ones.
4. Baby Vicks Vapor Rub
Use this Vicks Vapor Rub for babies when your little sweetheart has a stuffy nose causing them trouble breathing with ease. It's less harsh than the original version and will help with difficulty breathing comfortably due to a stuffy nose. It's recommended to rub it on their chest, but I prefer to rub a bit around their nostrils and directly below the nose.
Using this Vapor Rub will help your child (and you) get a much better night's rest.
5. Johnson’s Soothing Vapor bath
This baby bath is another great product for reducing stuffy nose symptoms.
I fill the tub with it so they can breathe in the vapors a little as they soak, but I'm not crazy about bathing them in it because the scent isn't great.
Don't get me wrong, it works for clearing the nasal passages as it should, but I don't want to bathe them in it and have that scent all over them. So I wash them in calming lavender baby wash, then rub a bit of baby vapor rub directly under their nose (above their lip) and around the outer edges of their nostrils.
That's how I use Vapor Rub on myself, it never worked effectively to rub it on my chest as recommended, but if that's what you prefer, I understand. I think doing both ways may be ideal.
6. Toddler cold medicine
To reduce typical cold symptoms such as congestion, runny nose, sore throat, sneezing, and coughing, I like to keep this Hyland's Daytime & Nighttime cold medicine to help my little ones feel better. I prefer to get the one for ages 2-12 years, but they also have a 6+ months formula if you have a younger toddler.
7. Lollipop cough drops
Keep an eye on them with these!
My 2-year-old was fantastic with them, but the 1-year-old slobbered all over them until the candy and the top of the stick broke off. At that point, I took it from her because it was utterly unsafe to let her have that loose in her mouth.
You do not want that choking hazard!
If that is not an issue, these are an excellent way to provide your little one with a kid-friendly "cough drop."
This medicine is more well known for alleviating car sickness symptoms. However, one of the acute symptoms of car sickness is nausea. I find this medicine works well for my children for any nausea and is not limited to the instances when the nausea is brought on by motion sickness.
9. Baby wipes and tissues
You'll need baby wipes to clean crusty noses where the snot has literally dried and crusted around their nostrils. However, wipes are much less efficient at wiping away snot the way you want since it's already saturated with liquid. Hence, tissues are ideal for runny noses as opposed to crusty noses since it's more absorbent.
10. Pedialyte/Pedialyte pops
The doctors we've seen have always emphasized the importance of maintaining our children's hydration when they're sick. It's okay if they don't want to eat, but you don't want them to become dehydrated. Fortunately, there are enjoyable options available to ensure they get their electrolytes.
My eldest liked the Pedialyte drink, but my younger ones didn't. However, they were willing to eat the pops. They may not be hungry while they're sick, but at least with these, they're getting their electrolytes. Watered-down Gatorade can work as well.
With these ten essentials, you can effectively battle and conquer your toddler's cold symptoms and get them back to feeling good as soon as possible. So now, kick your toddler's cold symptoms' butt and help your toddler battle this ailment! Good luck, mama.