Dry cough, Dry throat, Dry mouth, Hoarse voice/Productive cough - Dryness (Element Metal)
To get a more profound understanding on how the different seasons and climatic factors affect children's health it is better to review the material Acute Illnesses - The Role of the Five Elements first.
External dryness relates to the autumn season. Besides the season living in a dry environment such as deserts may also cause external dryness attacks.
Dryness consumes body fluids causing dry skin, dry lips, dry nose, dry throat, constipation, etc. Dryness enters the body through the skin, nose and mouth. As the nose and the mouth are the orifices of the lung external dryness attack results in dry cough. As the throat is dry the voice becomes hoarse. As the large intestine is the partner organ of the lungs, dryness in the lung will lead to dryness in the large intestine, causing constipation.
The antidote to dryness is moisture. Foods that moist dryness are white foods (the color that benefits the lung) with moisturizing quality. Such are eggs, milk, and dairy products. Pears benefit constipation, bananas and apricots have general moistening property, and white fungus, such as button mushrooms, moistens dryness and nourishes the lungs. (1)
Appropriate acupressure points for gentle massage are Lung 7 and Kidney 6, which in combination have intense moistening properties. Kidney 6 also benefits the throat and relieves the dryness of the throat and the hoarse voice. Ren 17 benefits the cough.
Unresolved dry cough often turns into bronchitis. In such cases the cough becomes productive and there may be yellow-green sputum. There may be also fever. In this case the use of moistening foods should be discontinued and drying/cooling white foods and herbs should be used. Such foods are white radish, horse radish, and white pepper. Other foods with drying property are celery, corn, pumpkin, rye and honey. Apples cool down the lung and benefit the yellow-green sputum and the fever. (1)
Appropriate acupressure points for gentle massage are Spleen 9 and Stomach 40, which reduce phlegm, Lung 5, which cools down the lung and reduces fever, Ren 17 benefits the cough, and Lung 7 generally tonifies the lungs. If you want to watch the instructional point location videos for these points you can do so by subscribing to the customized part of this project. To learn more click here.
(1) Pitchford, Paul (2002). Healing with Whole Foods. Berkeley: North Atlantic Books
Note: This text offers explanations and treatment methods, based on the perspective of Traditional Chinese Medicine. It is for educational purposes only! It is essential that you stay in touch with, and consult, your pediatrician at all times! Please read our Disclaimer