I was disheartened today to read in the newspaper about a woman in Arkansas who had her three children taken away. She was charged with child endangerment after her 10 month old was brought in to the hospital unresponsive with a blood alcohol level of 0.19. After trying a couple different children’s medicines that didn’t help her teething child, the woman turned to the home remedy her mother suggested of rubbing alcohol, such as whiskey, on the baby’s gums to help numb them. Instead of properly following the remedy’s instructions, she added it directly to the child’s bottle and came close to killing him with alcohol poisoning.

Now, I understand the desperate need to get your child relief, but as parents, we do have to be smart and have common sense when deciding what to give our children. I am a big believer in home remedies and know that they can be very helpful. However, we must be sure we know how to properly administer them, especially to our younger children. We must also research and understand home remedies so that we know how they work and can avoid misusing them.

To those who would condemn any use of alcohol for anyone under the age of 18 or 21, I advise you to look at the ingredients for numerous children’s medicines. That’s right; amongst all of those ingredients that you can’t pronounce is alcohol. I personally would rather use it in a purer form that doesn’t have all of those unnecessary additives and use less of it. Now, I personally have not tried this remedy, but I have heard it works. I know how whiskey tastes and prefer to rub Savannah’s gums with a clove tea. It provides the same antibacterial and numbing benefits without the bite of whiskey. However, I did grow up in a home that prescribed hot toddies for the flu. I only had the flu once or twice bad enough to be given one, but it was a much-appreciated relief when I did need it. I didn’t turn into an alcoholic because it was administered nor did it damage by brain (though that may be contested by any liberals that get into an argument with me).

To close, just be sure you understand the specifics of the home remedy you want to use. Be smart and double check information before you do something that can have extreme negative results. Most importantly, let us gain knowledge and common sense and pass these things on to our children so they won’t have to experience the disastrous result of a home remedy gone wrong.