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Tips for treating summer cold & infections in children

Summer is more than just holidays and summer camps for children. Parents also gear up to protect their children from the heat, harmful UV rays, and dehydration. Have you considered colds and infections? Children can catch a bad cold or several diseases, even in summer. Read on to know more.

Book an appointment to consult Dr. Hemalatha R Mallaya for pediatric & Neonatology concerns

Why Do Kids Get Colds in Summer?

Did you know kids are prone to summer colds and infections? Yes, you read that right. Colds in summer are not uncommon.

Most people think children and even adults are prone to colds only in cold weather conditions. Colds are caused by a virus and not the weather. So be it summer or winter, if you catch the virus, you will catch the cold. The same applies to kids. Rhinovirus is what causes the common cold and the symptoms and impact don't change from season to season.

Kids have a weaker immune system than adults. In summer, they tend to venture out more to play with their friends or take part in summer classes. Their exposure to other children, viruses, bacteria, etc., is higher. Hence, they tend to get colds and infections more easily in summer. It is not due to the season but due to the increase in exposure.

How Do You Treat Summer Colds for Kids?

You cannot keep your child indoors or away from their friends during summer. It is tough to prevent your child from catching a cold or an infection from their friends during the summer. Here are some ways to effectively treat your kid's summer colds and infections:

1. Hydrate

Drinking plenty of liquids can help flush out the toxins and germs causing infections. Keeping the body cool and hydrated can also help the immune system fight better and recover faster when attacked. Encourage your kid to drink plenty of water and other fluids. If they prefer drinking juices, offer fresh fruit juices without sugar for maximum benefit.

2. Maintain Body Temperature

When your kid catches a cold or develops a fever in winter, you are more likely to wrap them up in a thick blanket and keep the room warm. During summer, if your kid catches a cold or an infection, the internal body temperature can rise when the immune system starts fighting the virus. Keep the room cool and well-ventilated to maintain your kid's body temperature. Do not let their body get too hot, as it can become unsafe.

3. Use A Humidifier

The humidity can be low if you live in a dry and hot area. This can cause a dry throat or a stuffy nose, which can be very uncomfortable for a kid. A viral cold can make the nostrils and throat drier. Use a humidifier in the room, or use saline drops before your kid goes to bed. Both can help retain moisture and reduce the dryness in the nose and throat.

4. Address Dry Skin

Summer can cause severe dehydration and dryness. If your kid's skin is dry, it increases the risk of cuts and scrapes that can develop into open wounds. Open wounds are breeding grounds for viruses and infections. Use a light, non-sticky moisturiser to keep their skin supple and soft.

5. Over-the-Counter Medicines

It is not ideal to visit the doctor every time your kid catches a cold. Consult your doctor to learn what over-the-counter medications you can give your kid and when you should come in for a consultation. Ensure you stick to the doctor's dosage and consult the doctor if the symptoms do not subside. Avoid continuing medications beyond the recommended dosage.

6. Steam/Hot Showers

Inhaling steam can help relieve congestion caused by cold. If your kid refuses to cooperate, you can opt for a hot shower. Let the water run for a few seconds with the doors closed. This will fill the room with steam. When you take your kid inside, they inhale the steam, which can offer temporary relief.

How Long Does Summer Cold Virus Last?

A cold in summer will last as long as a cold in winter. As mentioned earlier, the cold is caused by a virus, not by weather conditions. So, your kid's summer cold will also take about a week to ten days for the symptoms to reduce and for the cold to resolve fully.

If the cold develops into something more serious, it will take longer to resolve. If you do not get a medical opinion and try to treat the symptoms on your own, it may only work sometimes. So, the time taken for the cold to resolve can also vary accordingly.

Also Read : How to Manage 5 Common Summer Health Problems in Kids?

Home Remedies for Summer Colds and Infections in Children

Are you keen on trying some simple yet effective home remedies to treat your child's summer cold or infection? Many such home remedies have been passed down through generations. However, it is always advisable to seek your doctor's advice before you start any such remedies. Sometimes, these remedies can interfere or react with the medications you may give your child. To avoid over dosage or counter medications, it is safer to discuss with your doctor first.

You can try the following home remedies for simple infections:

  1. Honey or warm liquids to treat cough.
  2. Steam inhalation or vaporub to relieve congestion.
  3. Humidifier for dry throat.
  4. Nasal drops for a blocked nose.
  5. Elevate the head to get better sleep when suffering from a blocked or congested nose.


Kids have a weaker immune system than adults, so they are more prone to catching colds or infections. If left untreated, these common colds can develop into something more serious. So, if your child has a cold and the symptoms seem to worsen or get severe, do not hesitate to

consult your paediatrician. Identifying the cause of the cold and treating the symptoms can give your kid good relief and help them recover faster.


1. What viruses circulate in summer?

In India, in addition to respiratory infections like the common cold and cough, viral diseases such as Chickenpox, Measles, and Typhoid are common during summer. Waterborne illnesses such as diarrhoea, dysentery, and, in rare cases, cholera are also prevalent in summer, as water scarcity forces people to use unhygienic water for various purposes.

Want to consult the Best Pediatricians in India? Please find the links below.

  1. ‍Best Pediatricians in Bangalore
  2. Best Pediatricians in Chandigarh
  3. Best Pediatricians in Chennai
  4. Best Pediatricians in Faridabad
  5. Best Pediatricians in Gurugram
  6. Best Pediatricians in Hyderabad
  7. Best Pediatricians in Ludhiana
  8. Best Pediatricians in Mumbai
  9. Best Pediatricians in Noida
  10. Best Pediatricians in Pune
  11. Best Pediatricians in Panchkula
  12. Best Pediatricians in New Delhi
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