This is an archived article and the information in the article may be outdated. Please look at the time stamp on the story to see when it was last updated.

(WLNS) — Do you have a little one with a cough or cold?

If so, doctors with Mayo Clinic want you to know that over-the-counter cough and cold medicines are for treating symptoms of coughs and colds, but not the underlying disease.

Research suggests that these medicines have not been proven to work any better than placebos.

Doctors also reported that these medications have potentially serious side effects, including fatal overdoses in children younger than 2 years old.

So, what can you safely try?

If your goal is to help clear out a stuffy nose, doctors suggest drinking more fluids than usual.

Additionally, parents can try cold mist humidifiers or steam from a shower, but don’t make it too hot. That will help make breathing easier and might ease irritation.

If your child isn’t feeling well and you have any concerns at all, it’s important to talk to your doctor or another healthcare professional, especially if you plan to give your kiddos medication.

Doctors said not to use over-the-counter medicines in order to treat coughs and colds in children younger than six years old unless it’s a fever reducer or pain reliever.