When kids are off climbing trees, digging in the sandpit and running in the playground, scrapes and bruises are an everyday occurrence. Children also pick up colds and viruses from their playmates, and then bring them home to the family.

As a parent you don’t want to wrap your kids up in cotton wool, but at the same time you want to protect them from harm. That means being prepared with natural remedies that have been scientifically tested and actually work. To help you with this mission we’ve identified three of the best:

Manuka ointment

Manuka is a native to New Zealand and a cousin to the Australian tea tree. Studies have shown that manuka oil is more potent than tea tree oil, particularly when it comes to anti-microbial, anti-bacterial and anti-fungal properties. Using manuka ointment helps to keeps skin abrasions clear of bacteria that can lead to infection. Manuka also has cicatrisant properties, meaning it helps to repair damaged skin and prevent scar formation. Plus it can be helpful to heal and reduce the itch of bug bites and stings. A natural all-in-one first aid kit!

Zinc supplement

Zinc is usually obtained in a normal diet that includes plenty of fruit and vegetables. It plays a vital role in your immune system, especially when it comes to fighting cold and ‘flu viruses. However New Zealand’s soil is lacking in zinc[1], so our locally-grown fresh produce doesn’t always have the amount of zinc you need. Taking a zinc supplement has been shown to decrease the severity and length of illness[2][3]. It has also been proven to reduce the number of sickness events.

Colloidal silver spray

Another natural product that is useful for infection prevention is colloidal silver[4]. When tested on bacteria that were resistant to traditional anti-bacterial agents, colloidal silver was found to be an effective anti-microbial and anti-bacterial agent[5]. When applied to minor wounds it acts as an anti-inflammatory too, reducing swelling and speeding up healing time. When sourcing colloidal silver spray, ensure the product you buy is reputable and be aware that long-term use can have negative health effects.

[1] https://researcharchive.lincoln.ac.nz/handle/10182/1501

[2] https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC2277319/

[3] https://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2013/02/130207131344.htm

[4] https://wellnessmama.com/130001/colloidal-silver/

[5] https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/25660077