A fairly common problem for parents is the increased excitability of children, their nervousness and irritability, tearfulness and whims, fatigue and depression, sleep disturbance. Not always these manifestations are symptoms of a disturbance of the nervous system.
In modern conditions, not only adults, but also children are often exposed to stressful situations. Already the process of birth is a stress for the baby. In subsequent years, provoking factors and reasons for nervous, restless behavior are many: adaptation in kindergarten and school; increased loads in connection with the development of the school curriculum and before the exams; scandals in the family or lack of contact with parents. Often pediatricians and neurologists have to prescribe sedatives to children. In this article, we will consider various sedative drugs for children.
Sedative (soothing) drugs help to relieve not only nervous excitement, but also a feeling of discomfort due to weather changes or abdominal cramps, to normalize falling asleep and sleep itself.
Methods and means of influencing the nervous system and normalizing the processes of excitation and inhibition in the brain are many:
- Herbal teas and decoctions;
- medicamentous sedatives;
- homeopathic remedies;
- means of traditional medicine;
- pedagogical methods of behavior correction.
Parents often prefer drugs that are of vegetable origin, considering them safe for the child’s body. These drugs have a milder effect, have fewer side effects, can be used for children under one year.
But they also have contraindications and side effects, the dosage of drugs is prescribed depending on the age of the child. Therefore, their use in children should also be coordinated with the pediatrician.
The assortment of preparations from medicinal plants is quite large. Traditionally and most often for the manufacture of soothing drugs are used such plants as peppermint, motherwort, valerian officinalis, lemon balm and others.
Valerian preparations not only reduce the excitability of the nervous system, but also have an antispastic effect (that is, relieve spasms), due to the presence in it of a complex of active substances (essential oils and alkaloids). They are used for increased nervous excitability, sleep disturbance in children, starting with the infants.
Extracts from peppermint have a calming and analgesic effect, as well as relieve spasms and reflexively dilate the vessels in the brain and heart. Leaves and stems of mint are used. They contain essential oil, trace elements (manganese, copper, etc.), tannins, other active ingredients. Due to its composition, mint removes nervous tension, has antidepressant and anti-stress action. This unpretentious plant is used in the treatment of neuroses and insomnia.
A similar pharmacological action is possessed by both lemon mint, or lemon balm. In addition to essential oil of lemon balm, the vitamins (riboflavin, thiamin, ascorbic acid) and microelements contained in it have a beneficial effect on the nervous system. Biologically active substances of lemon balm have a pronounced antihypoxic effect, and even anticonvulsant effect.
With motor and emotional anxiety in children is widely used and a preparation of vegetable origin, like Persen (in capsules and tablets). The preparation consists of plant components: lemon balm, valerian and peppermint. Indications for the appointment of Persen include insomnia, irritability and increased excitability. In the form of tablets, the drug is used for children from 3 years, and in capsules – from the age of 12 years.
The most common form of application of soothing herbs are teas, which can be purchased at any pharmacy. They can be in the form of granules for dissolution or be packaged in filter bags for brewing. Such teas are produced by many baby food firms or pharmaceutical companies.
The effect of such teas can be expressed in varying degrees: from minor to paradoxical, depending on the composition of the herbs entering the tea. Most often in tea use mint, chamomile, melissa, valerian, fennel, motherwort, lime color. Granulated tea can contain sugar, maltodextrose or fructose.
Some teas can be used even in the first year of life. From the second week after the birth of the baby, granulated tea “Sweet Dreams” by Humana has been approved for use. It includes melissa, lime blossom, mallow and thyme. From the age of six months it is possible to use teas: in the form of granules – HIPP, in bags “Bebivita” and “Grandma’s Lukoshko”. They do not contain colorants and preservatives.
Increased excitability of the child before bedtime, restless sleep are indications for the appointment of sedative tea. But the pediatrician should choose the kind of tea for the baby. No matter how innocuous the parents may seem to be, tea should not be exceeded for the baby. Many drugs have an individual effect: helping one small patient, they can not help another, or even cause the opposite effect.
Many dietary supplements also contain medicinal plants and can influence the mood and psychomotor reactions of the child. Therefore, before using them for a baby, you need to consult a pediatrician.
Modern living conditions, a huge flow of information, early infatuation of children with computer games and TV shows have a negative effect on the emotional state of the child and the insufficiently formed nervous system. Therefore, for some children, the appointment of sedative medications is a necessity.
One of the widely used sedatives is Glycine. It is an amino acid that promotes emotional discharge, a reduction in the processes of excitation, normalization of sleep, and improvement of brain function. Appointed also Pantogam, Magne B6, Citral, Phenibut, possessing sedative effect.
In special cases of excessive excitation of the child, neurologists can appoint Phenazepam, Sibazon, Tazepam, Elenium. The listed drugs (tranquilizers) effectively eliminate the feeling of fear, nervous overexcitation. These drugs can cause addiction, so they are used in exceptional cases, for a short time, under the supervision of a doctor.
Some doctors – neurologists and pediatricians – use Citral in their children’s practice, which includes tincture of motherwort, valerian root extract, magnesium sulfate and sodium bromide. However, you should know that a child who takes drugs with bromine for a long time may show signs of accumulation of bromine ions in the body. As a result, nervous excitability is suppressed, but apathy, drowsiness, memory impairment develops; there is a cough and skin rash on the body.
For treatment in children after 6 years of age and in adolescents of Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD) with European and international standards, the only Stratter drug, Atomoxetine, is recommended. He is not a psychostimulant and is not addictive.
It is impossible to prescribe sedatives to the child alone. For all violations of behavior or sleep in children, regardless of their age, you should contact the pediatrician.
It should be remembered that homeopathic remedies are not analogues of herbal preparations. Homeopathic remedies are often used in pediatrics: “Nota”, “Baby Sed” (“Caprizulya”), “Valerianahel”, “Nervoghel”, “Zaichonok”, “Shalun”, “Leovit”, ” “Edas”, “Dormickind”, etc. These drugs are used in case of stress (travel, adaptation period in kindergarten, divorce of parents and others).
Nervousness of the baby and pain during teething can remove the candles “Viburkol”. When sleep disturbances are used drugs “Dormikind” and “Nott”. “Dormickind” and “Valerianahel” can be used and at the age of up to a year. A drug “Hare” is offered as a syrup based on fructose, so it does not give an adverse allergic reaction.
To raise the mood and improve sleep, irritability can be soothing drug in the form of drops “Bayu-Bai”, but it can be taken only by children from 5 years of age. In the composition of drops: peony extract, oregano extract, peppermint extract, motherwort extract, hawthorn extract, glutamic acid and citric acid. The drug also has a generally restorative and light anti-inflammatory effect, an analgesic effect. Schoolchildren work capacity and tolerance of loads increases. All phases of sleep and morning activity of children are normalized.
With depressed states in a teenager, with aggressive behavior, psychological stress, a good effect is given by the drops “Epam 1000”. The composition of the drops include propolis and extracts of herbs (motherwort, valerian, rhodiola rosea). The action of the drug contributes to the restoration of the structure of nerve cells.
A good soothing means for a child can be an aromatic pillow. Her mother can sew and fill herself with dried herbs (mint, chamomile, melissa). But before that, you need to check how the used herbs work on your child, and make sure there is no allergy to these herbs. Herbs can be purchased at the pharmacy or prepared by yourself.
Beneficially affect the baby’s sleep and evening baths with the addition of herbs. Use lavender, coniferous, decongmeral, valerian, nettle broth for addition to the bath. Decoction for the bath is prepared as follows: 3 tbsp. collecting herbs with 500 ml of water is boiled in a water bath for 20-30 minutes. and insist for several hours, filter and add to 10 liters of water in the bath.
There are also ready-made chemist’s baths for “Reassuring”, “Phytosedan”, “Children’s soothing”. Such baths can be used from birth, but up to the year of the baby it is recommended to use a decoction of only one herb. The bath lasts 15 minutes, the course of treatment is 10 days.
It is possible to apply for baths and decoction of a mattress of the present: 5 items of l. herbs brew 1 liter of boiling water, insist 30 minutes and strain.
Before going to bed, you can use the bath for 10 minutes from collecting mint, oregano and calendula flowers. 50 g of dry mixture of herbs pour 3 liters of boiling water, insist 30 minutes, strain and add to the bath for 10 liters of water. It is recommended to carry out 3 baths per week (up to 7 procedures in total).
There is no contraindication for the use at any age of the bath with sea salt. This bath has not only a sedative effect, but also a restorative, tonic effect. Through the skin, iodine and other microelements penetrate the body. Such baths are recommended for children with birth trauma, rickets, sleep disturbance.
Depending on the indications, it is possible to change the salt concentration in the bath from 5 to 30 g per 1 liter of water. The water temperature is 38 ° C, the duration of the procedure is 15 minutes. After bathing the child should be rinsed with warm water (wash off the salt).
In pharmacies you can buy sea salt with natural essential oils (mint, lavender).
Pedagogical correction of behavior
The immaturity of the child’s nervous system in early childhood often causes negative behavior. In some cases, this behavior does not require the use of medicines, but is subject to pedagogical correction and assistance from parents in adapting the baby to the surrounding conditions and acquiring the skills of verbal communication.
Often problems arise in connection with the desire of parents to apply the newfangled methods of early development of their child. These techniques can be an overload for a child with whom he can not cope.
In some cases, problems of anxiety and increased excitability in a child, behavior correction can be solved with the help of fairly simple measures:
- adherence to the daily routine;
- sufficient duration of sleep;
- control over pastime at the computer and at the TV;
- obligatory stay in the open air;
- gradual hardening of the baby;
- balanced diet;
- normal psychoemotional situation in the family;
- visiting the kindergarten by the child;
- work in circles of children’s creativity.
Children also have biorhythms, that is, some of them are so-called “larks”, others are “owls.” Depending on the biorhythm should plan the regime of the child’s day. Carefully watching the child and his activity, you can determine the type of his biorhythm and correctly build a regime for him that will avoid hysterics and inadequate behavior.
It is necessary to avoid the child’s excessive custody, not making him “the center of the universe” in the family or the object of worship. Behavioral abnormalities, beginning in childhood, can affect the mental state in the future.
This does not mean that the child and his interests should not be given attention: deviations in behavior can be caused by a lack of parental involvement, when the child by shocking acts tries to attract attention and fill his deficit.
Sometimes, to ensure a quiet sleep of the baby, you just have to exclude noisy games before going to bed, give a glass of warm milk or tea with a spoonful of honey (if there is no allergy), tell a story. There are also musical disks that help to fall asleep. Should not parents organize entertainment in the evening, if the family has a small child, go with him on a visit in the evenings and stay there until late.
The mental state of the child often depends on the behavior of the parents. In a relationship with his child should be measured and calm. Irritability and fatigue of parents should not affect children. Do not forget this. Perhaps, sedatives are needed first of all for parents, so that mutual understanding and peace prevail in family relations. Then the children will not need treatment.
Resume for parents
Modern children develop actively and quickly. But this development has the reverse side of the coin. The child can not cope with the flow of information and emotional loads, which will entail a violation of sleep, behavior change, whims and tantrums. Before you try to find a way out of the situation yourself, use advice from neighbors and acquaintances, consult a pediatrician. The doctor will deal with the cause of the appearance of behavioral abnormalities, will select the necessary remedy for the baby and help to eliminate the increased excitability of the child at any age.
To which doctor to apply
With increased excitability of the child, sleep disturbance, you should consult a pediatrician and consult a doctor about the child’s regimen, non-medicament means, which calms the nervous system. If necessary, the pediatrician sends a small patient to a neurologist who prescribes medications. In cases of impaired behavior in adolescents, it is helpful to consult a psychologist, a psychotherapist, and in severe cases (for example, with depression) – a psychiatrist.