Babies battling with stuffy noses can indeed be quite grumpy. The question of “How to unclog a baby’s stuffy nose?” often arises among parents, especially since infants, unlike adults, can’t clear mucus independently. Usually triggered by allergies, dry air, or common viral illnesses, mild nasal congestion is usually not a cause for excessive concern. This article will discuss reliable home remedies, including the use of saline nasal sprays, to alleviate your baby’s discomfort.
How to Clear a Stuffy Nose with Saline Nasal Spray
If your infant has a stuffy nose, you might be tempted to reach for the decongestant. However, decongestant medication should never be given to children under 4. The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has warned that some of these drugs can have fatal side effects in infants and toddlers.
Saline nasal spray is one option. “You can gently clear your newborn’s nose with saline solution and a bulb syringe,” explains Michael Rothschild, M.D., director of pediatric otolaryngology at Mt. Sinai Hospital in New York City. Only a nasal spray made of saline solution should be used on newborns, infants, and toddlers.
How to Clear a Baby’s Nose with Saline
In order to apply saline solution:
- Lay the baby on their back and, if you can, tilt their head just a little. Don’t try to force it, though.
- A saline solution should be sprayed into each nostril with two to three drops. It’s okay if some of the sprays comes out when your infant sneezes; if any does, just gently wipe it away with a tissue.
- After spraying the saline solution into your infant’s nose, you can remove any excess mucus with a bulb syringe or nasal aspirator. Dr. Rothschild recommends using an aspirator with a rounded, acorn-shaped tip to fit into their little nostrils.
- After releasing all of the air from the bulb, carefully place the tip into your child’s nostril without forcing it in too far.
- Squeeze the bulb, remove the mucus, and wipe it off on a tissue.
- To relieve stuffiness, repeat the same in the opposite nostril.
Some nasal aspirators, like the FridaBaby Snot Sucker, are more convenient to use than manual bulbs. Nasal aspirators allow you to more easily and gently remove mucus from your child’s nose by using your tongue or a motor.
Alternative Home Treatments for Stuffy Nose
Are you interested in alternative natural treatments for your infant’s stuffy nose? These three methods could be used in between applications of saline drops and the nasal aspirator to assist in relieving congestion.
Put on the shower’s steam.
If your infant has a stuffy nose, you might want to take a few minutes to run a hot shower. Once the restroom is nice and steamy, you can sit there with your baby for a while. The mucous in their noses will loosen up thanks to the warm, humid air. Warning: bringing a baby into a hot shower might cause serious burns.
Keep a cool-mist humidifier running.
Dry air from indoor heating systems, which most of us use throughout the colder months, can worsen an already congested nose. A cool-mist humidifier can help alleviate the dry air and stop the congestion in your baby’s nursery. It’s important to keep the humidifier clean to stop the growth of mold, mildew, and germs.
Please drink water and take a nap.
When a baby is unwell, they typically need extra sleep, but the symptoms of their illness might make it difficult for them to fall asleep. Don’t skip your calming pre-bedtime ritual just because your kid has a stuffy nose. Ensure your baby is well hydrated by giving them enough breast milk or formula to drink. Keeping your infant upright during feedings can help relieve congestion.
When You Need Medical Attention
Most cases of infant congestion are harmless. However, if your infant has a fever, isn’t eating, is wheezing, or has trouble breathing, you should make an appointment with the doctor. You should schedule an appointment if the congestion doesn’t improve after four or five days.