Each year about this time, I start preparing for the Winter months by making tinctures and elderberry syrup (you can freeze ahead) and other remedies to have on hand in case anyone gets sick.
I keep all of these remedies in my natural medicine cabinet so that everything is organized and ready to use.
When Mom Gets Sick…
I realized a few years ago when I was the one to come down with the flu that there was one huge hole in my natural remedies plan…
I was the one to get sick this time. When my husband or children are sick, I get out the remedies and administer them on a schedule until they get better.
When I got sick, I was laying in bed and my husband asked…
“What do you need?”
And I responded, “I have no idea.”
When I wasn’t feeling well, I didn’t have the energy to get all the remedies myself and I was too tired/sick/brain foggy to be able to explain it all to my husband.
To my husband’s credit, he figured out where to find the remedies and did pretty good with giving them to me on a schedule. With those and lots of herbal tea and bone broth, I recovered quickly, so my first priority was creating a checklist that he (or anyone) could use if I was ever sick or not at home when a child was sick and needed natural remedies.
My Natural Remedies Checklist
If you are the one responsible for providing care when someone in your family gets sick, I’d recommend making a checklist like this for your home so that if you are the one to get sick, you can get the benefit of all the remedies you give to your family.
To make mine, I started by making a list of all of the remedies I had on hand and their purpose, dosage and location. I made this into a checklist spreadsheet of sorts for easy reference. Not only did this make it more convenient for me to use these remedies, it was something I could easily hand off to my husband if I got sick.
When my husband and I were out of town for a conference and our kids were with grandparents, this checklist was helpful for them as well. One of the children had a stomach ache as a reaction to food, and the checklist made it easy for grandparents to find and administer remedies.
Below is the checklist I keep on hand (with links to how to make the remedies) and…
Click here to print my checklist of remedies and dosage.
Remedies Checklist for Common Cold, Flu, or Stomach Bug
- Give herbal teas (iced or hot) as much as possible for hydration and relief of illness symptoms. Peppermint, Chamomile and Nettle are a good combination for most illnesses. Can add fresh lemon juice and honey if desired for children over 1 year. (Here are recipes for all the teas I keep on hand)
- Give elderberry syrup (1 tsp for kids, 1 tbsp for adults) ever 2-3 hours until illness subsides. (How to make it)
- Raw Garlic: For adults, 1 clove of raw, organic garlic minced every few hours. (If pregnant, no more than 1 clove per day)
- Apple Cider Vinegar: Up to 1 teaspoon in a glass of water every few hours during illness.
- Vitamin C powder mixed into water every few hours as needed. Up to 1 teaspoon. (this is the one I use)
- If respiratory: Cough syrup as needed. Make a face steam by boiling 1 inch of water in a large pot. Add 1 tablespoon each of rosemary, basil, oregano and thyme. Cover head with towel and breathe in steam to loosen congestion or calm a cough. Diffuse Lavender and Eucalyptus as needed.
- If digestive: Use digestive tincture as needed (up to 30 drops) for relief of nausea, stomach pain or other digestive problems. Diffuse peppermint (for adults and older kids) as needed. Give activated charcoal in capsules or mixed into water as needed.
- If skin problem: Clean well and use herbal salve as needed until better. (Suspect hand, foot, and mouth disease? See this post.)
- Magnesium Bath: Warm/hot bath for body aches, fever and relaxation. Add 1 cup magnesium flakes or epsom salts to bath and soak as long as desired.
- Hot Pack: Use hot rice pack to help with chills, aches or other problems as needed.
What natural remedies do you keep on hand for cold and flu season?
Discussion (29 Comments)
Wondering what you would do for an ear ache? And a sore throat?
Trying to get organized to have everything available instead of grabbing
over the counter stuff.
This is a great help.
Ear infection: https://wellnessmama.com/36494/ear-infection-remedies/, https://wellnessmama.com/58936/garlic-olive-oil-for-ear-infection/, and sore throat: https://wellnessmama.com/25991/herbal-throat-spray/
This is very practical, thank you! I’m learning so much, but so often I feel totally lost when it’s actually time for application, whether for myself or my family. Almost everything on this list are things I have/know about/am familiar with, but I have really had a hard time moving past information to application.
Thank you for such a lovely go-to list! All three of my kids are battling severe respiratory infections and it’s nice to have this on hand when my brain just won’t get into gear and remember what needs to be done. 🙂
I do have a question: for the garlic, why is this not recommended for small children? I have a 5 year old, 3 year old, and 1 year old..I’ve been giving it to the older two, is this a bad idea?
It is generally considered safe on children those ages, just hard to get them to take…
I find it easier to take the garlic in a warm broth, as raw garlic straight tends to make my stomach turn. I may be easier to get young ones to take this way, as it’s just a mug of broth for them to drink. There’s some cooking that happens, so it’s not quite raw, but if you pour the broth while drinkably warm rather than boiling, this is pretty minimal, and there’d be the benefits of both broth and garlic.
Thank you, this is exactly what I am looking for! Other than the garlic limitation, are there any of these remedies you would modify or avoid while pregnant?
These are generally considered safe, but I’d definitely check with a doctor or midwife just to be sure
Thank you so much! exactly as I need!
Love this list. Will come in handy for us single girls too 🙂
A-MAZ-ING – thank you for sharing the check list! It’s great to learn what remedies to use for different ailments, but this really delivers on application. Excellent and very useful! Thank you!!
Thanks a bunch for this nice, concise summary of what to do! I totally identify with not being able to think and plan when ill. So much better to think ahead.
One thing I have on hand that you don’t list here is activated charcoal. That stuff is like magic for quelling intestinal issues. Good for other things, too.
This is excellent, I just started my list today! Do you freeze the tea for grandparents and/or daddies to use? Or make the herbal mix up ahead of time and they just have to brew and serve? I also would add that I have multiple roller ball bottles of essential oil blends with carrier oil for most of these illnesses ready to apply at a moment’s notice, and MUCH more compact for traveling.
I just mix the herbs and store in an airtight container so they can brew and serve
Ha! I find myself in the same boat – I always know what to do for everyone else, but when it’s me I can’t seem to figure it out in a timely manner. Great post!