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My 10 year old nephew has been struggling with a cough for the past several weeks.

Q. Dear Terry, “My 10 year old nephew has been struggling with a cough for the past several weeks. It’s been getting better, but still seems to affect him at night. My sister said he can’t sleep through the night because of his cough.” — Kristal D., Duluth, MN

A. Dear Kristal, As always, I strongly encourage you to discuss the use of dietary supplementation with your nephew’s pediatrician, as they may have additional input.

Thyme and climbing ivy are two botanicals I highly recommend for coughing. Not only do they function as expectorants (help the body to cough out phlegm), but they are also mucolytics (break up congestion). Thyme and ivy are one of the most popular and commonly recommended herbal blends in Europe for dry spasmodic coughs, and due to its overall safety, it is a favorite for treating coughs in children. When taken together, they make a very excellent combination, helping to keep the lungs clear.

I would have him take these two ingredients several times a day. These same ingredients are also available in a liquid form that is a perfect option for children or anyone who may have difficulty swallowing tablets or capsules.

Additionally, to help the coughing flares at night, I would try a combination of calcium (as calcium lactate), magnesium (as magnesium citrate), and zinc (as zinc gluconate). These minerals can help relax the muscles – keeping spasmodic coughs at bay. I would have your nephew take these about an hour or two before bedtime.

Healthy Regards!

Terry . . . Naturally

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