How To Clear A Baby's Blocked Nose

When your baby has too much mucus, it can give them a stuffy head. It can also make it hard to eat or breathe.

Nobody likes feeling under the weather or having a blocked nose, least of all your little one.
Believe it or not, a runny nosecan be a good thing. It's the body's way of getting rid of germs. But when your baby has too much mucus, it can give him a stuffy head. It can also make it hard to eat or breathe.

But don’t worry, a few home remedies can make your little one more comfortable again. Helping you both get a good night’s sleep!
Saline drops
Put a few drops into each nostril, and then use a bulb syringe to remove some mucus. It's safe to repeat this as often as you need. And if you do it right before your baby feeds/eats it will make mealtime easier.

It works best if your baby is under 6 months. Older babies may get fussy when you use the bulb. If that happens, it's OK to skip that part. The saline drops thin the mucus, so you can let it work itself out of their nose on its own.

Here's how to use the bulb the right way:
  • Squeeze the syringe first.
  • Place the tip gently into your baby's nostril.
  • Release the bulb slowly.
  • Wash it with soap and water after each use.
Remove the sticky stuff
Sometimes mucus hardens into a crusty or sticky mess around the outside of your baby's nose. To clean it safely, wet a cotton swab with warm water and gently wipe the area. They won’t like it very much but it will make them a lot more comfortable.

Place a cool-mist vaporiser or humidifier in your baby's room to add moisture to the air. It helps clear his stuffy nose. Make sure to clean the machine regularly so mould doesn't grow inside it.
You can get the same soothing effect and relief if you and your baby sit in a steamy bathroom.

Give a helping hand
Gently tapping on your baby's back can help ease chest congestion. Lay them down across your knees and gently pat their back with your cupped hand. Or do it while they sit on your lap with their body leading forward about 30 degrees. It loosens mucus in the chest and makes it easier to cough up.

Wait it out
Not every stuffy, runny nose needs treatment. If it's not bothering your baby, you don't have to do anything. As long as your little one is active and eats and drinks normally, it's fine to wait and watch.

Laura Doyle, Mum of 4. Kyle 9, Noa Belle 4, Briar 2 and Milla 12 months. Breastfeeder, co-sleeper, coffee drinker. Staying positive and inspired by the chaos of it all. Follow her on Instagram.

Laura Doyle

Mum of four, Gentle parent living on coffee and trying always to stay positive and motivate in the midst of the madness.

Read more by Laura
{{ post.excerpt }}
{{ post.content.formatted }}

What is Family Friendly HQ?

Family Friendly HQ is Ireland’s trusted parenting community, dedicated to mums and dads, and families of all shapes and sizes.

Read more about us