Michelle Lloyd, 03/13/12
A healthy child can have an average of eight colds per year. Even though most over-the-counter cold and cough medicines don't help heal a child's body any faster, many parents go to them for symptom relief. Many OTC's mask new symptoms and common side effects may even cause new symptoms. OTC drugs can be very harmful for your child, especially if you use more than one because many cough and cold meds contain the same or very similar active ingredients, so it's easy to overdose. Some active ingredients have horrible side effects, especially dextromethorphan, otherwise known as DM or DXM. DM's side effects include SIDs, body rashes, hallucinations, vomiting, fever, gastrointestinal issues, and numerous other symptoms. Plus, since cough and cold medicines are liquid, preservatives are needed to keep mold and bacteria from growing. Unfortunately, the most common preservatives are in fact parabens which have been banned in other countries. Another concern with OTC cough and cold medicines are synthetic dyes and excess sugars, which may lead to hyperactivity. This can make a sick child feel like he is better, but leave him feeling over exhausted. Luckily there are several all natural, homeopathic, and DIY cough and cold solutions to help your kiddo feel a little bit better.