How to treat this common problem for babies

How to treat this common problem for babies

Congestion is very common in people of all ages, including babies. In fact, babies are actually more likely to become congested than older children.

Congestion can be caused by numerous things; however, the most common are changes in weather, viral infections and allergies. If a baby’s congestion is more severe, he or she may have asthma, the flu, pneumonia or a more severe condition such as cystic fibrosis or bronchiolitis.

“Babies are more congested than adults because their noses are smaller and clog with just a normal amount of mucus,” says Dr. Natalie Sgarlata, a pediatrician at Advocate Children’s Hospital in Park Ridge, Ill.

Some symptoms of nasal congestion include noisy breathing, snoring, clogged nose, coughing, runny nose and sniffling, while symptoms of congestion in the chest could be wheezing, heavy breathing, coughing and difficulty feeding. Some of these symptoms can affect the baby’s daily activities such as eating because of the blocked nasal passages.

“If a baby is congested, you can treat with steam and suctioning by giving a steam bath,” says Dr. Sgarlata. “This will loosen the congestion and allow you to more easily suction the babies nose.”

It’s important to know how to treat your child if they are congested so that congestion doesn’t progress and become even worse.

Always keep an eye on your child to make sure they are getting better and not worse. If you’re not sure how to diagnose if your child has congestion or how to help improve congestion, contact your doctor.

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About the Author

Meghan O'Grady
Meghan O'Grady

Meghan O'Grady, health enews contributor, is a public affairs intern at Advocate Health Care. She is a student at University of Illinois and majoring in Advertising.