This question was posted on my local mom’s listserve today: My son has had a cold for several months now and after rounds of antibiotics, nasal steroids and surgery, his cold isn’t going away. A nurse at his ENT dr’s office suggested a sinus rinse. Well, it appears that a sinus rinse is torturous for him and he screams and moves away as best as he can. Does anyone have any suggestions? I’ve showed him videos on the Internet of other children doing the same thing which was no help. I can stomach only so much of his screaming. ~Annie
Annie, I can relate to your dilemma! My kids balk at doing sinus rinses, too, but I’ve come up with some alternatives that they can handle and work to not only bring immediate relief but also to speed healing by clearing sinus passages.
1. Instead of an active Sinus Rinse involving flushing out the sinus passages, I tend to use a preservative-free saline sinus spray with my kids. They accept it better, and will blow their nose after I squirt into the nostril. The saline loosens the mucous so that it will move out more easily and uses osmosis to decrease inflammation in the sinus cavity. Unfortunately, however, this may be hard with a 2-year old who may not understand how to blow his nose properly. Just have him do the best he can.
2. Sinusin by Heel is a miracle remedy for opening clogged nasal passages. Agitate the bottle first by slamming it into your palm a few times, then squirt up each nostril. Encourage him to blow his nose, but don’t get into a fight about it; it’s ok if he doesn’t blow, too. Sinusin is non-medicinal and homeopathic, so you can feel safe about using it with your babies, and short-acting, so feel free to repeat it when he appears stuffed or runny again. Sometimes I find doing a second round immediately does the trick. I find Sinusin at Vitamin Cottage Natural Grocers, but I know it is also available on Amazon and may be also at Whole Foods.
3. Place a humidifier in his room at night with a vaporizer dish filled with clean water and 2-3 drops of eucalyptus essential oil. Eucalyptus is a purifying essential oil and breathing the moist, scented air will help clear his sinus passages while he sleeps.
4. Homeopathic Cold Calm by Boiron when taken as tablets dissolved underneath the tongue can offer safe and effective short-term relief from cold symptoms. Give him a tablet whenever symptoms appear; if the symptoms decrease or lessen, you know you have the right remedy. If there is no change within 30 minutes, it is not the right remedy so cease taking it. This one is definitely found at Whole Foods – often next to the registers during cold seasons– as well as at Vitamin Cottage.
Of course, you can use all of these remedies for yourself, too, when needed, with no negative side effects or concern for drug interactions.
To help keep him healthy, consider offering him lots of vitamin C and a daily drink of Good Belly Probiotic Drink.