With the temperature continuing to drop across the country, now is the time that we will start seeing more and more doctors’ offices flooded with patients complaining of sore throats and terrible coughs. We’re getting sick and we’re searching for solutions on how to feel better as quickly as possible. However, as ailments such as headaches, colds and coughs are fairly common, there are many of us who will forgo the doctor visit and simply head to our local grocery store to find a little bit of relief in over the counter medicines.
Before heading to the medicine aisle however, consider opting for a natural cough suppressant that has been proven to have a positive effect on sore throats: honey.
During a partially double-blind study in 2007, a Penn State College of Medicine research team compared the effectiveness of honey on sore throats to that of dextromethorphan (DM), a cough suppressant found in many over-the-counter medicines, and no treatment at all. In the end, researchers discovered that a small dose of honey before bed provided the best relief for nighttime coughing and sleep difficulty, especially in children.
This is great news for parents who are concerned with giving their children harsh medications that may be harmful or ineffective. In fact, dystonic reactions, severe involuntary muscle contractions and spasms are just a few of the potentially dangerous effects of DM in young children. While most medications suggest that children under the age of six should not be given over-the-counter medications, honey is a natural alternative that is safe for children as young as 12-months-old and above.
Of course, a plain old spoonful of honey will work just fine, but if you’re interested in checking out a couple of great honey cough recipes, check out some of Nurse Practitioner Barbara Dehn, RN, MS, NP’s innovative ideas at honey.com. Then be sure to head on back here to Marshall’s Farm to order your favorite batch of pure, raw honey before we get even deeper into the cold and cough season!