or Connect
Mothering › Mothering Forums › Toddler › Life with a Toddler › Alcohol based tinctures for toddlers? It feels wrong.
New Posts  All Forums:Forum Nav:

Alcohol based tinctures for toddlers? It feels wrong.

post #1 of 14
Thread Starter 

Am I the only one who thinks that giving a toddler an herbal tincture,  in a alcohol base, is weird?  ...or not good?


I saw a naturopath today for my son's eczema.  She wanted to start him on some unda drops.  I don't really feel like homeopathy is very science based, and for now I don't really buy it....so I told her that I didn't want to.  She then said we could do some herbal tincture instead and I said ok....It's in an alcohol base and I feel like giving my kid a little dose of alcohol everyday for 3 months just seems wrong.  

Is it just me?  


As a side note, we're also doing blood tests to check for allergies, and she gave me a couple topical creams for the itching.  The tincture is supposed to be used in the meantime,....to help his liver?

I just don't understand how an herbal extract actually helps the liver detox better.  I mean, how do we actually know that?   I just feel like it's kinda quacky, and the alcohol part freaks me out, but I want to do what's best for my son.

Plus, I already paid for it and opened it.

But, I'm about 100% sure my uber skeptic husband is not going to want me to give this to our son.



post #2 of 14

Usually the tinctures are measured out in drops, so the amount of alcohol is minimal. I can understand the pause though.  We have done a couple of tincture for my DD in the course of her 6 years, and I always felt the benefit outweighed the small amount of alcohol.  But I totally think that if it gives you pause, you should ask or look for something that is not alcohol based.  Herbs for Kids does a lot of things that aren't, and actually taste pretty good.

post #3 of 14
Thread Starter 

Thanks for your reply!


Well, I'm supposed to give 2-3 dropperfuls a day, which kinda seems like more than a few drops.

I think because I just really don't understand how/if it's an actual legitimate treatment, or if it's even necessary, I can't say that I know the benefit outweighs the risk.


I just feel like the doctor thinks it's important and I don't understand it, so it makes me feel uncomfortable.  I asked her to explain what it will do and why he needs it, but honestly it just sounded like a bunch of BS.  When I asked about the alcohol content being an issue, she  assured me that it was fine.  ...but I still didn't feel better.  ...so it kinda makes me feel like I'm the crazy one.

Edited by GuavaGirl - 7/23/12 at 9:43pm
post #4 of 14
Thread Starter 

If anyone has any links with some good info, I'd love to read it!


thanks in advance.

post #5 of 14
Could you list the ingredients in the herbal tincture for your son? I'd have a better response if I knew what was in it.
post #6 of 14
Thread Starter 

Burdock, yellowdock, dandelion, & oregon grape.  ...and alcohol, but I'm not sure exactly what kind.


She mixed it herself while I was there today.  It seems like it might be homemade because there are little particles in it.

Edited by GuavaGirl - 7/24/12 at 7:25am
post #7 of 14

It's probably brandy.  Or at least the flower essences are brandy.  Which TBH i think is partly why they work!  LOL.


If you're uncomfortable with it don't give it, whether it's herbs, homeopathy or allopathic stuff!  Also if you feel your Dr was talking BS then change dr's, there are some great herbalists out there, you absolutely need someone you trust (and REALLY trust, not make yourself trust!) if they're prescribing medication of any sort for your little tots. :D

post #8 of 14

I agree with PP, if you don't feel great about using it, then don't!  I also agree that if you don't place much stock in herbal remedies and homeopathics, maybe a conventional, allopathic doc is a better fit for you.  I waver back and forth in my "belief" in homeopathy - I'm inclined to call it BS until I use a remedy that works like magic!


Not that my opinion matters, because if it makes you uncomfortable you shouldn't do it, but that amount of alcohol (I don't know how big the droppers are, but I can't imagine we're talking more than a tablespoon spread out over a day) wouldn't concern me too much.  The alcohol's effect on gut flora would concern me more than anything else!

post #9 of 14
Thread Starter 

luckiest:  I'm totally on board with the naturopath philosophy.  I think getting to the root of problem instead of masking symptoms is great. I'm a believer in natural supplements, nutrition, and wholistic health...but for some reason homeopathy does not make sense to me. 


...and in this case giving my son a spoonful of alcohol everyday for three months, to help his liver deal with toxins supposedly contributing to his eczema, does not make sense at all.



I know this sounds lame, but I'm bummed that I spent $25 on something that I can't really take back.  ...so I'm secretly hoping to convince myself that it is something I should give to him. :)   ...but I'm not sure if that's going to happen.

post #10 of 14
From what your describing, The herbal tincture isn't homeopathy. It is herbs preserved in alcohol. It sounds like you don't trust who you saw. Perhaps you should seek out someone different.
post #11 of 14

eek, I would NOT give an alchohol based tincture to my toddler. They make vegetable glycerine tinctures for children.

It sounds like this natropath wasn't so good and maybe you don't feel like her advice is good. I would say try to find a better natropath that you trust.

I you do feel good about the tincture but not the alchohol then find a glycerine based one kinstead.

I know there is a brand called Gaia Kids that makes childrens herbal tinctures and stuff, you can look on their website.

Trust your gut on this and I think try to find someone better to see who gives you more concrete answers. Just because someone is a natropath does not mean they know what they are talking about! There are good and not so good doctors for sure.


Here is another company that does glycerine based tinctures



But personally without being sure for yourself that you want to give those herbs to your chld I wouldn't give large doses of tincture for excema.  I would research execma on the computer and find out as much as I can about it first thing.


I know some of those herbs you mentioned-  burdock, yellow dock, they are good but can be strong so you want to make sure you feel it is the right thing. You can also try tea with honey from those herbs but your toddelr oribably wouldn't drink it.

when I have stuff like this come up for me or my family, I often find that the first practicioner I go to doesn't give me all the answers I need. I keep going to people and researching on my own till I really feel like it gets unravelled and clear.

Dandelion root tea is a little more mild and better tasting so you could even try getting some dandelion root and making a weak tea with something sweet in it and see if your child will drink that. If so the extra water with the herbs can also assist the liver.

post #12 of 14
I wouldn't use that stuff. Have you tried 3 water soaks (baths without soap) a day with thick lotion immediately after the soaks?
post #13 of 14

Maybe I'm alone here but I don't think that's a lot of alcohol...one dropper three times a day. I just don't see how that would cause any harm. It's so so so very little.


But, I agree that if you cannot deal with the idea then get a glycerine-based tincture.


As for "believing" in it....no need to believe in anything. Herbal remedies have been researched and many scientifically proven, not to mention used to good effect for thousands of years by every culture on the planet. The mechanisms by which they function in the body are scientifically explained. I'm sorry I don;t have the time to google this for you, but you could easily find lots of relevant studies and info online. Many if not most pharmaceutical drugs are based on the chemical components in plants and herbs that have the effects on the body.


I understand not trusting homeopathy. But herbal medicine is something entirely different.

post #14 of 14

Hiya! It seems like there is some confusion about homeopathics and herbalism. Herbalism is based on traditional herbal medicine and backed with scientific evidence. You can get herbal glycerites (non alcohol tinctures) from several sources, herbpharm is one. Maybe ask you N.D. about tea's for your little one. If you live in an area that has more then one N.D. or herbalist maybe check out the others who work with children. I can ask around my herbalist friends in Oregon if you p.m. me your area.

New Posts  All Forums:Forum Nav:
  Return Home
  Back to Forum: Life with a Toddler
Mothering › Mothering Forums › Toddler › Life with a Toddler › Alcohol based tinctures for toddlers? It feels wrong.