Bronchitis, Ear Infections, Strep Throat…Oh My! OTC and Home Remedies Reviewed

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Ever since Christmas day, our household has been sick.  Yup, it’s been almost a month of sneezing, coughing, sleepless nights, and all-around grossness.  Add into that our new golden puppy, and we have been a family full of awesomeness in 2016.  Joy.

At some point, the illnesses have to go away, right?  Well, thankfully for us all, it seems that we have turned a corner.  And that was no small feat!  With two sinus infections, three ear infections, two cases of bronchitis, one upper respiratory infection and a case of strep throat, our house has been chock full of OTC and home-made remedies.  Since many of you might be going through at least one of these ailments, I thought I could give you a rundown of what worked for us and what didn’t. 

NOTE:  We ALL ended up going on an antibiotic. This article is not about curing your ailments, it is about letting you know what worked for us in combating the nasty symptoms of these ailments.

**This should be obvious, but I am not a doctor.  Make sure to check with your personal medical provider, before taking something you are unfamiliar with.  (*Especially check on the things you might give your little ones.) 

So here it is, a quick and dirty analysis of our remedies:


For ALL Ailments Cough Related, Mucinex helped us the most, although we didn’t try Mucinex, until we had exhausted all the herbal and home-made routes that we could think of…  However, this should have been our first stop.

My husband and I both ended up with bronchitis and a cough that just wouldn’t go away.  Once we started to use Mucinex we both felt better.  NOTE:  Make sure to drink TONS of water when you take this stuff, I think the water actually helps it to work.  🙂

Get some here:  Mucinex at Amazon (Great Price Too!)

OK, here are some of the other things that my husband and I tried to get some relief.  

First, I started eating raw garlic.  (I love garlic, but I love it cooked.  Don’t judge me, I was in a bad place and was desperate for some relief.)  So, I read on Live Strong that there is evidence that garlic can help with upper respiratory conditions.  So, I started munch it and taking it with honey.  Umm, let’s just say that this didn’t agree with my stomach and leave it at that.  Did I have any relief for it?  Nope, nothing.  (If you want to try this approach, please read the precautions before consuming raw garlic, you can find them here.)

Want to get some delivered?  Get it here:  Raw Garlic at Amazon

During the worst of our symptoms, a friend of mine told me that she had used Tei Fu lotion when her symptoms appeared and that they went away quickly.  I had used Tei Fu lotion on my painful knees when I was pregnant, so I had a bottle at home.  Again, I was desperate, so I tried it.  I applied a drop to my temples and some on the back of my neck.  And guess what?  I did get some relief, so I had my husband try it and he said it eased his symptoms too.  Was this a total elimination of symptoms?  NO!  However, it did provide some relief, so we could get some sleep.  I definitely recommend your getting a bottle of this stuff for your cabinet.

Get yours here:  Tei Fu at Amazon

For the last year and a half, I have been diffusing oils in my house.  Personally, I do it because I like the mild scents.  (I am sensitive to perfumes, so I can’t use a lot of air freshers.)  Any way, if you haven’t heard about the benefits of oils, you need to get out more.  It seems like every person I know either has oils or is selling them.  My lovely hubby got me a Edens Garden Beginner’s Set of oils last year, and I LOVE them.  The brand is nice too.  The oils are 100% certified pure therapeutic grade quality and they are affordable.  (Believe me, spending money on oils can add up really quickly.)  

ANYWAY, during our disease-fest, I diffused a combination of eucalyptus, lavender, rosemary, peppermint, tea tree, and lemon.  Did it have any impact on our symptoms?  I think so, I felt better when the diffuser was on, than how I did when it wasn’t.  It felt proactive to me, like I was putting something other than just germs in the air.  My husband and kids all request the diffuser to be put on when I forget to do it, so on some level its impacting all of us.  Also, I let the little ones fill it up and make their own “formulas,” which they like to do.

You should try it:  Get the Diffuser from Amazon Here and the Edens Garden Oil Set Here


For my little one (3), who also had bronchitis and an ear infection, Mucinex was obviously out of the question.  We used ibuprofen (Children’s Advil).  For my not so little one (8), who had strep throat, we also used ibuprofen.  Over the years, my husband and I have found ibuprofen to be more effective than Tylenol in fever reduction and pain elimination.  (This is purely superficial, of course, because we haven’t done scientific studies on the stuff.  Ibuprofen just seems to work better for our little ones, so this is what we go with.)

Grab yours here: Children’s Advil (Ibuprofen)

For that wretched cough, for use only right at bedtime, the doctor suggested Dr. Cocoa.  And you know what?  Best. Child’s. Cough. Syrup. EVER!  It tastes just like chocolate syrup; I know, I tried it.  (Do you taste your kid’s medicines too?)  There was no fussing, and the boys both sleep soundly through the night!  Make sure this stuff is in your medicine cabinet.

Get it here:  Dr. Cocoa for Children

Have you ever heard that you can put Vicks Vapor Rub on your feet before you go to bed and it will ease your cough?  Well, my husband and I tried it with the full strength stuff and neither one of us felt any relief.  However, I use the Baby Rub on my little ones any time they have a cough, and it really does calm them down.  Definitely grab a container of this stuff.  One container has lasted eight years so far… 

Here’s the link:  Vicks Vapor Baby Rub

That’s it, folks!  I hope that our treacherous month of grossness helps your family get through any number of ailments over the coming months.  Of course, please go see a professional if you have any inkling that you (or your loved ones) might need an antibiotic.  Good luck and feel better!  

One thought on “Bronchitis, Ear Infections, Strep Throat…Oh My! OTC and Home Remedies Reviewed

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