How to Treat Baby Colds and Congestion

Within their first year, most babies will have as many as seven colds. It could be more depending on the number of people that are handling the baby and even more when they’re in childcare centers. While to many parents this might be a cause of alarm, it is understandable because, around this age, the baby has not developed an immune to most of the most common infections and the common cold that later comes with congestion is one of them.

Signs and symptoms

The common cold might manifest itself in different ways to different babies, which is why to most first time parents, this might turn out to be slightly confusing. Before you start panicking, you can be able to tell if your child is suffering from a common cold and or a congested nose if you can identify one or more of symptoms that include:

  • Sneezing
  • Irritability
  • The baby is having trouble nursing or taking a bottle because of nasal congestion
  • Difficulty sleeping
  • Fever
  • Coughing

Any of these could be a sign that your baby is suffering from a cold and a congested nose. Ideally, they are usually a tandem so one always drags in the other. If you’re very sure that the problem with your baby is none other than a common cold. There are different avenues that you can use to help ease the baby’s discomfort. You should know that there is no remedy or cure for the common cold. Instead the best you can do is try and keep the baby comfortable and your baby should be healthy within 10-14 days.

Home remedies

Baby coldMost parents will agree that home remedies are the most potent and handy of options that are available. This is more so the case if you happened to find yourself with a baby with a clogged nose in the middle of the night. In most instances, it would be almost impossible to find a drug store open and God forbid have your medicine cabinet empty at the same time.

There are a couple of different remedies that you can try out and each of them has different effects especially when it comes to the cold and clogged nose. But, you have to be aware that these are not treatments for cold by any standards. They’re just ways that you can use to help ease the discomfort of the baby and make them less grumpy.

Breathe the steam

If you have nothing in the house that could possible help you in easing the discomfort of your baby, breathing steam can be a great way to work on clogged nose. All you have to do is walk into the shower and turn it up and hold the baby in there for a while. This remedy could also help with a cough as it helps to soothe the irritable throat. Remember not to keep the baby in there for too long.

Lemon treatment

Most parents are often scared by a fever. However, in most instances, it is a sign that the body’s immune system is working and hence should not be really a huge concern. In babies that are less than three months old, signs of a fever should however be checked by a doctor since it is a great cause of concern in such instances.

If your baby has a fever and they’re feeling a bit out of sorts as a result of a fever, there is a great home remedy that you can use to counter the fever. Especially when it is associated with a cold. Slice a lemon over a bowl of warm water to capture the aromatic oils of the fruit. You can then use a cloth or piece of sponge to give your baby a warm lemon water bath. Lemon has magnificent cooling properties and the evaporating water adds to the charm. The reason why warm water is advised is because you don’t want to put the baby in further shock and the warm water is soothing to their skin.

Warm comfort

In isolated cases, as a result of the fever, your baby might start shivering and in most instances, cooping them up in heavy clothing makes them sweat erratically which is also a very scary instance. However, there is a way that you can use to keep the baby warm and when needed you can easily turn it down. Swaddle a hot water bottle using a soft towel.

While battling colds in babies, there is a plethora of other home based remedies that you can use that are just as effective. These would include keeping the baby hydrated and turning up the humidifier. However, you have to note that while there are many remedies available, it does not mean that they will all work in the same way. Some might work wonders for some babies while in other babies you might need to try remedies.

Medical remedies

Baby's coldOn the other hand you have the medical remedies. These are for the parents that are staunch believers of the medicine world and what research can do. There are also a couple of options that you can seek out but again, this will only calm the symptoms and make breathing easier and not necessarily treat a cold.


A fever can be the most uncomfortable symptoms that a child has to go through. While it is usually a good sign, you can never leave it unattended. You will always have to cater to the symptoms. For this, all you need are some Over The Counter (OTC) remedies. In most instances, acetaminophen and Tylenol which also happen to be painkillers are great at combating fever. However, sometimes, it is a great ideal to let the child run a low grade fever. It helps the body fight the fever.

You should however not give acetaminophen to children that are below three months of age. You should also be careful when giving the same to children older than six months since the dosages are a bit confusing.

Other options that you can use to combat fever related to a cold include Ibuprofen, Advil and Children’s Motrin but only if the child is 6 months or older. If the baby is vomiting or dehydrated on a constant basis, it would be a good idea not to give them these medications.

When combating the coughs and colds, you should know that the FDA recommends against the use of OTC medicines to children that are younger than two years. As it has been emphasized over and over again OTC medications do not treat the underlying cause of the cold. In fact, they can make it worse for the child.

Clogged nose

For the clogged nose, you have two options. The first would be to have an aspirator in the home. It is a great tool that every parent ought to have. It is a quick and easy way to open up the breathing paths of the baby functional again. If the nasal aspirator does not the deal done for you, then perhaps some sniffy sprinkles would do the trick. They’re an FDA approved product that helps to loosen the mucus. The loose mucus can either flow out or you can use an aspirator to suck it out.

Another great way to help with a congestion is with the use a homeopathic option known as sinus soothe it offers a great way for the baby to be able to breathe better at night and it does not really including other remedies like the aspirator. If you baby is over one year, there is another great product that would be of help is the Kiddie Boost. While this does not really help to treat colds as well, it helps to prevent them. So your kid does not have to go through the awful ordeal in the first place.

One of the ways that you baby can be able to fight off cold infections is by being able to build a strong immune system. The only and most efficient way that they can be able to do this would be through breastfeeding. Bybreastfeeding them more often you help them build a strong immune that allows them to fight infections more easily.

Other than the home remedies and pharmaceutical products, you can use, there are also some simple adjustments that you can make that would also help a lot in making your baby more comfortable when they have a cold. One of these ways is wearing the baby in a sling and in an upright position. Not only does the proximity between you and them make them feel more comfortable but it also helps with drainage.

You can also place a pillow between the crib springs and the mattress. The goal would be to get a slight inclination that would help with the drainage pf the mucus down the throat. This way, it doesn’t stick around and make it harder for the baby to breathe.

You could also give the baby some probiotics which would help to strengthen the immune system. However, you should know that this wouldn’t be of much help if it is not given to the child beforehand. It is more of a preventative measure.


It is easy for a parent to get caught unaware when their little one falls ill and they have no idea of what they can do. With these remedies you can be able to ease the experience for the baby and keep them comfortable. Home remedies are usually the best when it comes to babies. But before you try anything new, it might be a good idea to consult with the doctor first.