Everyday in every home throughout America, parents are kissing boo-boos, making paste out of flour and water, and applying aloe vera to sunburnt skin. We use what we have to take care of our kids. Some people call these folk remedies, while others (like me) learned them from my mom who learned them from her mom. No matter what you call them, these homemade solutions work!
Here are some of my favorite secret homemade (or home-used) remedies that work . . . and why they work!
Baking Soda and Lemons
These two things together produce magical results! I cut a lemon in half and sprinkle baking soda on the pulpy part and use it to scour my sink. I also use it on my counter tops around the sink where hard water spots always seem to develop. Baking soda is a good abrasive that doesn’t scratch, and lemons are good at cutting through grease. And nothing beats the scent of fresh lemon . . . it automatically makes me think “clean”.
Why It Works: According to Larry Ferren, Ph.D., professor of chemistry at Olivet Nazarene University, the citric acid in the lemon reacts to the minerals found in hard water and dissolves them. On a chemical level, the baking sodaÂ also helps the citric acid to work more effectively.
Baking Soda and Water
When any of my kids get a bug bite, I apply a paste of baking soda and water. My mom used to do it to us when we were little, and her mom did the same to her. The paste brings relief from the intense itching. It really works . . . try it!
Why It Works: Nobody knows, but even the Mayo Clinic recommends it. According to Larry Millikan, M.D., professor and chair emeritus of dermatology at Tulane University, the paste probably hydrates the outer layer of skin, which feels soothing. Or the baking soda may adjust the pH of the skin “just enough” to make it feel better. Either way, I swear by this one!
Swaddle Your Baby To Calm Him Down
I swaddled all three of my children from day one . . . just like they taught me to do in the hospital. And my babies all seemed to sleep more comfortably and were less likely to wake up then when they weren’t swaddled (yes, I experimented!).
This Miracle Blanket is truly a miracle. It works, and I had several of them. I also give them as baby shower gifts because they really work!
Why It Works: Swaddling replicates the feeling of closeness in the womb and prevents the baby’s natural “startle” reflex from kicking in and waking up the baby.
Salt Water To Soothe A Sore Throat
Another hand me down from my mom is the salt-water gargle. You put a tablespoon or so of salt in some warm water and have your kids gargle it (or my three-year-old just swishes it around in his mouth and I tell him to try to make bubbles in the back of his mouth without swallowing it.
Why It Works: It help by rinsing away debris and secretions and may even remove germs. Adele Evans, M.D., assistant professor of pediatric otolaryngology at Wake Forest University says: “It’s like washing and cleaning a wound.”
What home remedies do you swear by?