7 Ways to Ease Your Baby’s Stuffy Nose

by Elizabeth Peters August 29, 2016

7 Ways to Ease Your Baby’s Stuffy Nose

A stuffy nose is a common complaint with newborns, who are getting used to breathing air for the first time. While an infant stuffy nose normally isn’t something that requires a trip to the doctor, it can be tough on a newborn and can cause concern in parents. Nasal congestion in babies can make it hard for them to eat or breathe and can cause overall discomfort. Fortunately there are several newborn congestion remedies you can do at home to alleviate infant stuffy nose and get your little one feeling comfortable again. 

Try Saline Drops
Saline nasal drops are available at your local store and are the only type of nasal drops you should use with your baby. That being said, they work well to break up mucus so that it can make its way out of your baby’s nose. For best results, lay your baby down on her back and gently tilt her head back a little, then put two drops of the saline solution in each nostril. Don’t fret if your baby sneezes some of it out, a good amount most likely made its way into her nasal passage. Because nasal saline drops are safe to use in babies, you can use them as many times as you need to for your baby’s stuffy nose.

Use a Vaporizer
A vaporizer or humidifier used in your baby’s room can keep the air moist, which can help clear up baby nasal congestion. Don’t have a vaporizer or humidifier? Try steaming up the bathroom by running a hot shower, and then sit in the steamy bathroom with your baby (but don’t take your baby in the hot shower – that’s dangerous!). The steam will have the same effect as a vaporizer or humidifier would and can help clear her nasal congestion.

Use a Bulb Syringe
A bulb syringe is a tool that is shaped like a bulb and is used to suction mucus from your baby’s nose. Bulb syringes are inexpensive and can be purchased from your local store. To use the bulb, squeeze it and gently put the tip into your baby’s nostril. Slowly release the bulb and it will suction your baby’s nostril as it releases. Be sure to wash the bulb syringe with warm water and soap each time you use it. If the bulb doesn’t seem to be clearing the nostril, try first using a few saline nasal drops to break up the mucus and make it easier to suction out.

Clean The Area
Sometimes mucus can become crusted around a baby’s nostril, causing her to be stuffed up. Try wetting a cotton swab with warm water and using it gently clean the area well, removing all the crusty bits so that she can breathe easier.

Pat Her On The Back
Gently patting a baby’s back can help ease nasal congestion in babies by breaking up the mucus in their chest. For best results try laying her across your knees as you gently pat her on the back. Doing this to break up the mucus can aid her in being able to cough it up and get rid of it.

Raise The Crib Mattress
Sleeping with your head elevated can help you breathe better and get a good night’s sleep. Since it is dangerous for babies to sleep with a pillow due to the risk of SIDS, you can try to elevate her head a little while she is sleeping by slightly elevating the head of her crib mattress instead. You can do this by placing a rolled up towel or small blanket under the head of the mattress to raise it up slightly. Be careful to only raise it slightly and not to raise it so much that she might slide down to the other end of the mattress during the night though, as that could be dangerous.

Place a Bowl of Warm Water in Her Room
Placing a large bowl of warm water in your baby’s room while she sleeps is another way to keep the air moist. The warm water will evaporate into the air of the room, adding moisture to the dry air which can help break up mucus.

Any of these newborn congestion remedies can help ease your baby’s stuffy nose, but don’t fret too much over your baby’s nasal congestion. As long as your baby is eating well it’s ok to just wait it out until the congestion passes – she’ll be her usual happy self before you know it.

Elizabeth Peters
Elizabeth Peters


Elizabeth Peters is a mother of two and freelance writer who specializes in the parenting/family niche. When she is not writing for clients she can be found blogging about parenting on her own blog at TheMommyVortex.com. She currently resides in Alabama with her husband and two young children. Connect with her on Twitter: @themommyvortex

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