Here are some of the most popular home remedies to cure tummy ache in children of any age. All these remedies are natural and thus, leave no side effects.
Tummy ache or abdominal pain is prevalent in children, especially those between the ages of four to eight. However, only a few of these children are diagnosed with a serious problem. There are many causes for a tummy ache, the most common being:
- Junk food consumption
- Improper diet
- Insufficient water intake
- Food allergies
- Lactose intolerance
- Over-sensitive intestines
- Worm infestation
- Irritable bowel disease(IBD
- Contaminated food or water
- Food poisoning
- Bacterial infections in the GI tract
- Eating gas-causing vegetables like cauliflower, radish, cabbage, etc.
- Kidney or bladder infections.
Therefore, as parents, you should be aware of some easy ways to alleviate your child’s tummy ache at home. These ways include:
- Keep the child hydrated by giving plenty of fluids, boiled water, and diluted fruit juices.
- Avoid giving dairy products.
- Do not give the child any oily or spicy foods and also avoid all condiments or seasonings that can irritate the GI tract.
- Avoid caffeine, carbonated drinks.
- Practice good hand hygiene.
- If your child is hungry, give him a bland diet of dry toast, bananas, rice, yogurt, apple sauce, or oatmeal.
- If your child is stressed or scared, remain calm and try to distract your child by getting him involved in a pleasant activity like reading, listening to music, craft, etc.
Home Remedies To Cure Tummy Ache In Children
1. Hot Water Bottle
A simple remedy that provides instant relief is by placing a hot water bottle or a heating pad on the abdominal area after making your child lie down. Make sure the water is not too hot. Heat increases blood flow to the skin surface, diminishing the perception of pain coming from deeper in the abdomen.Dr. Robyn Strosaker, a pediatrician at a children’s hospital in Cleveland
2. Foot Pressure
- Laura Norman, reflexology practitioner, in her book ‘Feet first: A guide to foot reflexology’ writes that there are thousands of nerves in the feet and hands. When specific techniques are applied to them, it can cause the entire body to relax and feel calmer. The tummy region corresponds to the center arch of the left foot. Hold the child’s left foot with the palm of your right hand and put the left hand under the ball of the foot. Apply steady, even pressure with your thumb on the center arch. Your child will respond positively to the touch and feel calmer. However, it is important to do this before a meal.
3. Chamomile tea
- Give your child a cup of warm chamomile tea. This is an effective remedy for simple tummy aches and upsets. Chamomile tea relaxes muscles of the upper digestive tract, relieving spasms, and stomach cramps. It also has anti-inflammatory and sedative properties that relieve pain and calm your child.
- Ginger is an effective age-old cure for tummy aches. It has Gingerol, a strong antioxidant and anti-inflammatory compound, which decreases the production of free radicals and relieves nausea while increasing the secretion of digestive juices, and neutralizing stomach acids. You can give this to your child in the form of ginger ale, ginger soda, or ginger tea.
5. Peppermint tea
- This tea has a calming effect on stomach muscles and it improves bile flow, which helps digestion. Give peppermint candy only to older children as in younger children; it can be a choking hazard.
6. Yogurt and probiotic foods
- Yogurt and probiotic foods heal tummy cramps, diarrhea, and upset stomach. When tummy ache causes diarrhea, the good gut bacteria are eliminated with the stools. Eating yogurt with live cultures replenishes the good bacteria and helps bring digestion back to normal.
7. BRAT diet
- Follow the BRAT diet for your child if your child has diarrhea. This diet includes bananas, rice, apple sauce, and toast.
8. CRAP diet
- When a tummy ache results from constipation, feed your child the CRAP diet as advised by Michael Roizen, co-author of the book,’Raising your Child’, this diet consists of fibrous fruits like cherries, raisins, apricots, and prunes which help loosen stools. If your child is under four years, serves these fruits in a purée form.
9. Physical activities
- Encourage your child to engage in physical activities as they help all body systems, including the digestive system, to function optimally.
Homemade Recipes for Tummy Ache
- Asafoetida effectively relieves pain due to gas. Make a paste of asafoetida in either water or olive oil and apply it around the belly button avoiding the navel. You can also mix it in warm clarified butter and apply it to the abdomen.
- You can powder a tablespoon of fenugreek seeds and add it to yogurt, and serve to your kids. This is useful to treat constipation, stomach ulcers, gastritis, and heartburn.
- Warmed castor oil, when applied on the tummy and covered with betel leaves, offer quick relief from pain. It works by stimulating the digestive system, releasing gas, and initiating bowel movement.
- Heat 2 tsp of cumin seeds in a cup of water and give it to your kid. This helps in improving the digestion and also relieves gas. Ginger, asafoetida, and rock salt boiled in water also have a similar effect when sipped in small quantities throughout the day.
- Constipation can be relieved by adding 1 tsp fresh clarified butter, 1/2 tsp rock salt in 11/4 cup water. Give it to your kid after an hour of dinner to relieve constipation.
- To combat stomach ache and bloating, add a tsp fennel seed, 1/2 tsp Ginger, 1/4 tsp asafoetida, and 1/4 tsp rock salt to boiling water. Once the solution turns lukewarm, give it after a meal. It is preferable that you filter out the fennel seeds and ginger before giving the drink to your child.
- Boil 11/4 cup of water with an inch of ginger and 1/2 tsp aniseed. Add a pinch of turmeric powder and strain the liquid. This is an effective remedy for diarrhea.
- Yogurt and probiotic foods are the most helpful when the child suffers from IBD.
- Ginger juice can leave a soothing effect when you apply it around the navel of a child below two years of age.
- Decoctions of Mint, Ginger, and lemon help cure bacterial infections in the gut. Add honey to make it more palatable when you want to give it to children over two years.
- If natural home remedies do not help cure the tummy ache and prolongs for more than a couple of days, it is advisable to seek medical help.
- Pain around the belly button is usually a cause of less concern, but if the pain occurs on the right side of the abdomen or the lower part of the abdomen, it is prudent to visit the doctor.
- Any tummy ache which is severe or accompanied by fever, vomiting, green vomit, blood in vomit, loss of appetite, blood in the stool, pain while urinating, extreme fatigue, weight loss, or poor growth warrants a visit to the doctor.
Now that you know these home remedies to cure tummy ache in children, incorporate them in their lives to relax their tummy. However, it’s advisable to check if your child is allergic to any of these ingredients. Discontinue the use of a certain ingredient if your child’s body reacts to it adversely.