Cold Remedies Compatible with Breastfeeding

I needed to find some cold remedies that are safe while breastfeeding (didn’t want to pass on meds to Little Dude, or have my milk supply dwindle)… my friend told me about

It’s a handy breastfeeding & parenting website.

Here’s what it recommended for a head cold:

  • Use a saline nasal spray (I’ve been using a Netti Pot 2-3 times a day)
  • Steam treatments: (I’ve been steaming it out with Little Dude in his bathroom 2-3 times a day, so I will continue to do this)
    • Boil a pot of water, remove from the stove and (optional) add a few drops of essential oils (for example: eucalyptus, sage and balsam). Drape a bath towel over your head and breathe deeply for 5 minutes. Do this 2 or 3x a day until symptoms subside.
    • Put two inches of apple cider vinegar in a pan and heat until it begins to steam. Inhale the vapor. If the vapor is too strong, add a little water. Repeat as needed.
  • Essential Oils: Place a drop or two of either eucalyptus or peppermint essential oil on a cotton ball or handkerchief and hold near the nose while breathing deeply. (I will try this with eucalyptus oil)
    • A couple of cautions: Do not use the oil in the nose – it can cause swelling. Do not use peppermint oil or menthol (one of the main components in peppermint oil) or camphor on or near the breast where baby might ingest it, and do not apply directly on the skin of a baby or young child. There have been cases where the direct application of menthol or camphor products (for example, Vicks VapoRub™) to baby’s skin resulted in severe breathing difficulties or liver problems (see info on colds and congestion in baby).
  • Cayenne pepper: Sprinkle it on your food, or put a quarter teaspoon in a glass of water and drink.  (I might try this one later today… spicy food & breastfeeding doesn’t always mesh)
  • Drink fenugreek tea to relieve head and chest congestion and cough.  (I have been taking 2 Fenugreek capsules with each meal since I felt this cold coming on)
  • Massage can help with sinus problems (sounds nice)

What do you do when you have a head cold? Comment below 🙂


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Kasia - March 29, 2011 - 12:10 pm

I am using many of these same remedies- except for allergies during pregnancy. thanks for the great tips :]

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