A blocked nose may be the most banal of maladies, but when a baby is the sufferer, it can mean sleepless nights, difficult feeds, and the stress of hearing your little one struggle to breathe. Here’s the top tips to help alleviate the problem.
“The main problem a blocked up nose causes is that it makes it difficult for your baby to feed,” says Dr Rob Hicks.
“Try increasing the humidity of the air by putting a bowl of warm water in the room, for example in the bedroom while your baby is sleeping, which can help loosen thick mucus. You could also try sitting with your baby on your lap in a steamy bathroom, which can help shift mucus, too.”
If you’ve exhausted the above remedies, and baby is still struggling, Dr Rob advises saline nose drops prior to feeding: “A natural seawater nasal spray can also be used regularly throughout the day to help loosen and clear the mucus.”
On the Madeformums forum, mums share some tricks on what’s worked for their tots, ranging from basic nasal aspirators, to putting Olbas Oil in a sink of steaming water while baby is in the bath, sitting with baby in the bathroom while a hot shower steams up, and using a humidifier at night.
Though uncomfortable and distressing, most colds resolve without treatment, but Dr Rob does caution to seek medical advice immediately if:
- Your child is finding it difficult to breathe
- Your baby is less than three months old and has a fever higher than 38C.
- Cold symptoms last for longer than 10 days and mucus is brown, green or yellow—possible signs of a bacterial infection.
- If your baby is rubbing his ears—a possible sign of an ear infection.