To get a better understanding on how the different seasons and climatic factors affect children's health it would be helpful to review the material Acute Illnesses - The Role of the Five Elements first.


Children   Summer   Pediatrics



  • acute sore throat
  • red, swollen tonsils
  • high fever


  • general symptoms caused by heat - headache, mouth and tongue ulcers, swollen and painful gums, restlessness, thirst, profuse sweating
  • untreated heat resulting in dehydration - dry lips, dry throat, scanty yellow urine, constipation
  • heat transformed into fire - nosebleed



External heat relates to the season summer.

The nature of heat is to flare upward. Thus when the heat invades the body the majority of the symptoms manifest in the head, and the upper body. Typical external heat invasion, especially in children, include acute sore throat with red swollen tonsils, and high fever, and they tend to manifest predominantly during the summer season. Other heat symptoms include headache, mouth and tongue ulcers, swollen and painful gums, restlessness, thirst, profuse sweating, etc. but these are more “internal heat symptoms” and belong to the “internal disharmonies” rather than acute attacks of external climatic factors. In both cases cooling the heat with cold drinks, fruits and vegetables (which have cooling nature) will bring about relief.


One of the best remedies for sore throat with strong anti-inflammatory properties is bee propolis. It is considered one of nature’s most powerful antibiotics. There are different types of bee propolis products available which are suitable for children for example honey-propolis sucking tablets, alcohol free propolis extracts, propolis mouth and throat spray. It is essential for the parent to inform him/herself about what the appropriate dosage of the product for the age and weight of the child as all products contain different amount of propolis. Certainly if the child is allergic to bees and bee products propolis may not be used.


Very powerful remedy for red, painful and swollen tonsils is throat-wash with grapefruit seed extract. Another natural antibiotic, considered harmless for children (even for those who have citrus fruit allergies but if this is the case the parent should be aware!). Ten drops of GSE is diluted in 150 ml of water, which are then offered to the child to gargle. The solution should be held in the mouth for 30 seconds then spit out. If the child is too young to gargle on its own the parent may dip her finger in the GSE solution and massage the child’s throat and tonsils. Certainly not the most pleasant experience, but it is nontoxic and effective.


GSE is never to be used undiluted! The concentrate is highly acidic and may burn the child’s mucous membrane.


Another nontoxic remedy, which is largely used in traditional medicine to locally massage the sore throat, is baking soda. The logic is that most viruses and bacteria live in acidic environment. Inflamed throat means that there is  bacteria in the area, thus the area is acidic. Baking soda neutralizes acidity. Putting a little baking soda on the finger and gently massaging the child’s throat couple of times a day will destroy the living environment of the bacteria, thus neutralize it. Again – not the most pleasant experience for the child, but safe and effective!



Mother Carrieng



Foods, which have particularly cooling effect on the throat are cucumber, lemon, strawberry, and radish. (1)


If the heat remains untreated it will eventually dry up the child's body fluids. Symptoms include dryness of the lips and throat, scanty yellow urine, and constipation (not enough fluids to nourish the intestines).  Hydrating the child with electrolyte rich fluids is essential. Moistening foods are apricot, papaya, and pear.(1)


Untreated heat may transform into fire. If the fire reaches blood level it will increase the blood flow and force the blood out of the blood vessels, causing bleeding. Symptoms include nosebleed, spitting up of blood, blood in the stool and urine, etc. A doctor should always be consulted if the child has bleeding!


Appropriate acupressure points for gentle massage are Large Intestine 11 combined with Stomach 44 to clear heat and reduce fever, Lung 10 to clear heat from the Lung, which governs the throat, and Kidney 6 for sore throat and moistening. 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:  These healing methods are compiled from the author's perspective of traditional Chinese medicine and her personal experience as a parent. Nevertheless it is essential that you stay in touch with and consult your  pediatrician at all times! Please read our Disclaimer!


Related Articles:

Spring (Element Wood) - "wind evil" - common colds, flu

Summer (Element Fire) - "summer-heat evil" - sweating, dehydration, fever, thirst - all during summer season

Late Summer (Element Earth) - "damp evil" - diarrhea, colic, vomiting

Fall (Element Metal) - "dry evil" - dry cough, dry throat, dry mouth, hoarse voice/unresolved dry cough leading to productive cough

Winter (Element Water) - "cold evil" - muscle cramps, pain, ear infections

Preventive Pediatrics - The Role of Yin and Yang

Healthy Eating Habbits for Children Based on the Theory of Yin and Yang