No one likes having a stuffy nose, especially babies. Since babies breathe through their nose, congestion can interfere with breathing, eating, and sleep, all of which can make for a very unhappy little baby. And when the baby is not happy, nobody is happy.
- Add a humidifier to your baby's room. Dry air can contribute to stuffiness and a humidifier helps to put moisture in the air which can loosen and thin out mucus making breathing easier for everyone in the house. Ideally, the humidity in your home should be around 30% to 50%.
- Bring baby into a warm, steamy bathroom and sit for a few minutes. The moisture in the air will help to loosen mucous.
- Keep your baby upright as much as possible. Being upright helps drain the nasal passages, clears the airways and makes it easier to breathe. Utilize a baby carrier to keep your baby upright while you continue to get some work done.
- Saline nose drops can be lubricate the nose and loosen secretions. Saline solutions can be purchased over-the-counter or made easily at home. Even a few drops of breast milk, with its anti-bacterial properties, can help clear little noses.
- Eliminate or reduce sources of allergens such as dust and pet hair.
- Finally, consider using a nasal aspirator. Nasal aspirators work by using suction to remove stagnant mucous from your baby's nose. There are many different types of nasal aspirators on the market today. Commonly used is the traditional bulb syringe nasal aspirator. Unfortunately, however, the bulb syringe can cause inflammation of the nasal passages if used too often which can exacerbate the congestion. When looking for a nasal aspirator, look for one that does not enter the nasal passages or limit the number of times the aspirator is used if it does enter the nose.
Most babies should feel some relief from congestion when the above recommendations are utilized. Remember, cold or cough medicines are not safe for children younger than two years of age and should not be given. If you feel that nothing is working for your little one, his condition worsens, fever is present, or your baby is under three months of age, contact your baby’s healthcare provider for additional assistance.
How to Relieve Nasal Congestion in Infants
By Yary Mordkovich, President of Baby-Vac Inc. Designed by an award-winning Hungarian scientist, the Baby-Vac™ Nasal Aspirator effectively and safely removes mucus from the nasal cavity in an efficient and gentle manner.
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Author : Diba Tillery RN, BSN, IBCLC, CPST