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How to Help Your Newborn with Congestion?

by | Newborn

When it comes to babies, congestion is very common in them. It is usually harmless, but gradually it gets irritable for the babies. They suffer from stuffy noses and breathing issues, such as wheezing.

The babies always experience a congested nose or either a congested chest. Making the symptoms quite different from each other, depending upon where the congestion has actually occurred. Nasal congestion does not irritate a baby much; it’s normal for them, as they feed normally.

Treating nasal congestion is also very easy, using a suction bulb to remove the stuffed mucus from the nose. This article will provide you with detailed information about the causes, treatment, and prevention of congestion.

What Causes Congestion in Newborns?

Babies usually get congested because they are sensitive and new to many atmospheric conditions. They get congested very easily if they breathe in polluted air, such as cigarette smoke, virus, or other irritating atmospheric elements. If they are exposed to unclean air, their bodies, as a result, start producing mucus to block the airways, not letting these pollutants get into the baby’s body.

Being exposed to dry air and harsh weather can easily cause congestion in babies. As a result, their body starts creating unreasonably excess mucus. Babies have more chances of having a congested nose or chest than children because their airways and nasal passages are already very little and still growing.

Here are some possible main causes of congestion in babies.

  • The baby might have breathed in dry air.
  • It could be a result of a sudden change in weather.
  • Deviated Septum.
  • Due to a viral infection, such as a cold.
  • Some air pollutants have been taken inside through breathing.
  • Allergic reaction.

 More Serious Causes of Congestion

If the congestion sets deep into your baby’s chest, then yes, it is something you need to worry about. You should instantly get your pediatrician’s appointment. Some of the serious causes of congestion that you should be aware of are as follows.

  • Pneumonia
  • Flu
  • Asthma
  • Cystic fibrosis
  • Bronchiolitis or Respiratory Syncytial Virus (RSV)
  • Transient tachypnea

Symptoms of Baby Congestion

The symptoms of congestion could be found more easily in premature babies than that in full-term ones. These symptoms can vary depending upon the location of the baby’s congestion. It could get pretty difficult to identify the location of the congestion due to the small airways of the babies.

Still, there are ways you can identify the location of congestion in your baby by noticing which area is being affected. If the baby has a runny nose or the nose is being stuffed with mucus, this is because they have nasal congestion. Remember, nasal congestion is very common in babies. They could be only sounding congested in their nose, and no other trace of sickness could be found.

In chest congestion, fluid fills up the airways of the baby’s lungs. It is not very common because it only happens during a serious illness. But sometimes, even chest congestion is normal when the baby is doing all the other activities, such as playing, feeding, or sleeping, perfectly.

Symptoms of a Congested Nose

  • Noisy or wheezy breath
  • Irritated during the feed
  • Stuffed or blocked nose
  • Snoring
  • Coughing constantly
  • Sniffling
  • A runny nose

Symptoms of a Congested Chest

  • Labored tough breathing
  • Coughing badly
  • Difficulty during the feed
  • Quick breathing and wheezing

Things You Should Not Do with a Congested Baby

It is recommended not to use vapor rub on babies. These vapor rubs can be pretty harmful to babies if they breathe them in because of their sensitive airways and still-growing lungs.

Doctors also prohibit the parents from giving the babies any sort of cold and flu medicines. If the congestion is not ending and the baby is much irritated, then you should visit your pediatrician immediately instead of experimenting with medications.

How to Prevent Congestion?

Instead of being worried after the baby gets congestion, you can follow a few steps to prevent congestion in the first place. To do so, keep your baby safe and far away from a list of nasal irritants.

  • Hair sprays
  • Dust
  • Gasoline or paint fumes
  • Aerosol spray
  • Cigarette’s smoke
  • Perfumes
  • Scented lotions
  • Pet hair

For babies, you should be very careful if someone at home is sick or has a cold. Then you should strictly keep your baby away from them. You should be well aware that minor viral infections in adults could result in severe viral infections in babies due to their growing immune systems.

It would help if you were washing your hands every now and then. If there are other kids at home, ensure they keep their hands clean and remain at a distance from the baby if they have a cold or flu.

Keep a hand sanitizer with easy access so that whenever you feel like your hands m, ay be carrying somewhat of bacteria or germs, pump the sanitizer and sanitize your hands instantly.

Also, keep the baby updated with their vaccinations. This helps in keeping the immune system of the baby stronger with every passing day.

Treatment of Congestion

If your baby is experiencing congestion, he might also be super irritated. There are a few things you can do to soothe his irritation and lower the congestion. Try removing the mucus from your baby’s nose; this will soothe him and make him feel better and comfortable.

Home remedies usually focus on giving the baby extra care and soothing them with comfort. If they are being ill and that is how they are experiencing congestion, then they could be treated with their congestion until the illness passes.

Nasal congestion could be relieved by using a plastic suction bulb; some may as well use a nasal syringe to let the mucus make its way out of the baby’s nose. Here is a list of home remedies that could be effective for congestion in babies.

    • Giving the baby a hot shower will melt the mucus and relieve the baby’s breathing issue. Simply let the baby sit in the hot shower and let him breathe that steam inside. After the shower, be very careful to keep the baby warm. Otherwise, the baby will get even more congestion and might get a severe cold.
    • Be regular while feeding: The baby should be fed properly in order to let him regain his energy and help stabilize the immune system.
    • Don’t leave the wet diaper for so long: this can cause further cold in babies, and the wet diaper, after some time, becomes cold. If the baby is being exposed to cold in any way possible, he might not recover from the congestion he is already facing.
    • Use saline water for their nostrils: This will help in clearing up all the mucus.
    • Massage with oil the forehead, cheekbones, and temples of your baby. You may as well massage the baby’s chest; this will initiate warmth in the baby’s body, would relieve their irritation, and make them comfortable or cozy.
    • Try not to smoke inside the home: Smoke can be harmful to a baby’s lungs in any way. It would be best if you strictly avoided smoking inside the home.
    • Clean your home: To remove any dust residues or pet hair, you should always keep your home clean. The dust particles are sometimes the main reason affecting your baby’s tiny airways and nostrils. As a result, mucus forms, and they are infected with flu and cough.
    • Clean up the mucus with a gentle hand: Clean the baby’s mucus to keep his nostrils clean and clear.
    • Use a bulb syringe: if you have already used saline drops, you might as well now try a bulb syringe. This will help in sucking out any mucus, resulting in a clear nose. Be very gentle when cleaning or clearing a baby’s nose.

What Position Should A Congested Baby Sleep In?

Congestion always gets worse when the baby is sleeping or especially at night. You should lay the baby down while holding the baby upright to your chest. Here, the gravitation law will work, and the mucus won’t block the baby’s nose.

This will also help the baby to sleep peacefully. Even during the day, the baby has much more difficulty breathing or feels irritated. You can tilt their head and lay them down; this way, the mucus will seep out of the nose. And the baby will be relieved.


Congestion is very common in newborn babies. But you should be well aware of all the remedies to stop the congestion in the first place it starts. We have enlisted a list of causes, preventions, and treatments you may use for your baby’s congested nose or chest. Knowing the core causes will help you treat the congestion because you know what is going on with your baby.

While congestion is considered normal, we should not ignore it and let it sit on the baby’s chest. Because that is where the major illness seeps in, call your pediatrician and ask for his suggestion immediately to cure the congestion in the baby’s chest.

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