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Treating congestion in Newborns written by: tkeziah A stuffy or congested nostril can bring about a situation where it becomes difficult for your child to suck and therefore keeping his/her nasal passages clear critical.
There are various ways and techniques of treating congestion in infants. Some of these methods include:
(1) In case your pediatrician gives you go ahead, use a nasal saline/salt water spray which is available at most baby drug and supply stores. Follow all the directions and instructions on the bottle. Mildly spray the saline water into one nostril at given time. One droplet of your breast milk in each nostril regularly may also help to clear the congestion. To suck the mucous out, you should use the bulb syringe which is also available at various drug stores and is at times given out at the health center. You should press the syringe bulb after gently inserting its tip into your child’s nostril. Slowly allow the bulb to re-inflate thus taking out the mucous. Always clean the bulb syringe thoroughly with hot water and soap after use. Also, ensure the syringe is dry before applying it again.
(2) Using a humidifier in the baby’s room help in keeping the dry air humid/moist hence easing congestion. To control mold from growing specifically in the tub, you should keep on changing the water. Staying with your child in the shower with the door closed and hot water running may as well help in loosening congestion. Allow the hot water steam to fill the newborn’s room while sitting with the child for a short while but ensure that he/she does not get too warm. In case his/her cheeks or other body parts gets red, or he/she looks uncomfortable, you should move to a cold/cooler room.
(3) Allowing your baby to sleep to certain extent sloping in a swing or car seat may also help his/her breathing especially when hi/her chest or nostril is congested. Ensure the baby is buckled in well and the car seat is nearly on the ground to prevent the child from being knocked over.
(4) Giving gentle love pats on the baby’s back can help in easing chest congestion. You should lay him/her down across your knees or sit him/her on your lap and gently pat his/her back with your hand cupped. This mechanism loosens the mucus in the chest making it easier for him/her to cough it up.
In case the baby loses his/her desire for food and drinks or is very congested such that it is unlikely for him/her to eat or breastfeed, you make a call to the child’s pediatrician. It is also wise to understand that not every congestion or running nose requires treatment. If it is not bothering your little one, you do not have to do anything. As long as your baby is active, eats and drinks normally, it is fine to watch and wait first.