Giving Herbal Remedies to Children

When it comes to children, many parents are hesitant with regards to giving them synthetic and doctor prescribed medications for minor illnesses. They are often concerned the medication is going to harm their children by being too strong for their bodies. It is because of this fear that many parents are now choosing the herbal options which are becoming more and more prominent throughout Australia.

A proper and balanced intake of herbs is great for children and their growing bodies. The last thing you need is unwanted chemicals inside your child from repeated synthetic medications. Giving your child herbs on a regular basis will naturally boost their immune systems and help prevent future illnesses.

Here are some herbal tips to help you treat your child for average cold symptoms.

To prevent your child from dehydration during the tenure of an illness, a simple chamomile or ginger tea will immediately correct this problem as well as eliminating any excess mucus from the body.

Ginger tea extracts are great to give your child even after the illness because it helps their body recuperate at an accelerated rate. You can use herbal teas for fevers, chills, aches and pains and practically any common cold symptoms.

Herbal teas are the safest types of herbal remedial treatments you can give a child and they generally like the teas and have no trouble taking them, unlike some of the synthetic medicines today. There are also syrups which make some of the less tasty remedies more palatable for the youngsters. Here at Herbology we try to locate recipes for children’s remedies which are pleasant tasting so you do not have to chase your child around the house just to take some cough syrup.

Many of the formulas we provide on Herbology can be used for children as well as adults, but you must remember to reduce the dosage accordingly. There are several different formulas used when calculating child dosage. At Herbology we prefer to use Clark’s Rule as it goes by the child’s weight, not age.

This rule, in which the average adult is assumed to weigh 68kg, allows you to convert adult formulas to suit your child’s weight. This means that if the suggested dosage for an adult is one cup of herbal tea and your child weighs 22.6 kg, you would give him or her one third of a cup. Likewise, 30drops of tincture to treat a sick adult would reduce to 10 drops for the same child. A 7kg baby would get one tenth of a cup of tea or three drops of tincture. Please bear in mind that tinctures contain alcohol and are much stronger than teas. You will only need to add a couple of drops to water or juice to have a powerful children’s remedy.

Clark’s Rule: Based on an adult dose of 1 x 200ml cup of tea

Child’s Dose = (Weight of Child (in kilograms) / 68 kilograms) x Adult Dose e.g. 17kg child ÷ 68 x 200 = 50mls

2.5kg – 9 kg 7mls – 27mls
10kg – 15kg 30mls – 45mls
16kg – 30kg 47mls – 90mls
30kg – 40kg 90mls – 120mls
40kg – 50kg 120mls – 150mls

!! Caution: Clark’s Rule cannot be applied to all herbal remedies, some are simply too strong to give to any child, no matter how small the dose is.

It’s always a great idea to check with a qualified herbalist first to see which herbs are safe for your children’s conditions.