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My daughter is 7 and suffers from asthma. I have recently been doing some research and have realized that her asthma medication has serious side effects and can even suppress her immune system. Furthermore, the medications help to suppress asthma attacks, but I see no indication that the meds are actually curing the asthma and the attacks are becoming more frequent. I am wondering if there are any herbs that are safe for children to use that will treat asthma. Thank you.
There are 2 types of herbs that are often used for asthma; those that open the airways for immediate relief, and those that return the lungs to health. Herbs that open the airways include ephedra and grindelia. Ephedra is no longer available in the US because people were abusing it as a diet supplement; this is unfortunate as it really was valuable for those suffering with asthma. Grindelia is a bit hard on the kidneys for little ones and should be used with great care with children.
Because your choices are limited in using herbs for the actual asthma attack, you may have to rely on your inhalers until the lungs are repaired using tonic herbs for lungs. It may take up to a year, but the attacks should lessen and become less severe within 6 weeks of use. Tonic herbs can normalize the lung health, even if the asthma is due to a genetic disposition. Elecampane is one of my favorite tonic herbs for children and can be used along with mullein. Childhood asthma that is related to allergies can be addressed with tonic herbs that normalize the immune system such as eleuthro, and elecampane is also an immune system tonic.
Dosages vary depending on the product you chose. Herbal medicines can include teas, tinctures, glycerites, tablets, capsules, or teapills. Generally, recommended doses are for adults and are based on 165 pounds. Children’s dosages can be determined by their weight devided by an adult dose. It is necessary to dose the child consistently for many months for a great outcome. Most people make the mistake of skipping doses when the child seems better; this will not give the long-term results that will be possible with a more
Getting children to take their herbs can be quite a challenge with the flavors of herbs to consider. None of the herbs mentioned taste horrible, but it will probably require some honey to go down easier if you are using a tea. Glycerites are very sweet and easy to administer. Teapills are much smaller than tablets so they are easier to swallow for kids. One of my favorite ways to dose kids is through an herbal bath or using essential oils such as thyme and orange diluted in their bath water.
There are also several patterns associated with asthma in Chinese medicine.
In Tea We Trust,