Clearing the Way: How to Treat Nasal Congestion in Babies

Nasal congestion in babies can be distressing for both the child and the parents. As their nasal passages are small and delicate, congestion can interfere with their breathing, feeding, and overall comfort. In this blog, we will explore effective and safe methods to treat nasal congestion in babies, providing relief and helping them breathe easier.

Keep the Airways Moist:

Dry air can exacerbate nasal congestion, so it’s essential to keep the air moist. Use a cool-mist humidifier in the baby’s room to add moisture to the air. Ensure proper cleaning and maintenance of the humidifier to prevent the growth of mold or bacteria. Alternatively, a warm mist humidifier or steam from a hot shower can also help alleviate congestion.

Saline Drops and Nasal Aspirator:

Saline drops can be a game-changer in relieving nasal congestion in babies. Administer a few drops of sterile saline solution into each nostril to help loosen the mucus. Gently suction the mucus using a bulb syringe or a nasal aspirator. Remember to clean the aspirator thoroughly after each use to maintain hygiene.

Elevate the Head:

Raising the baby’s head slightly can help improve breathing and alleviate congestion. Place a folded towel or a wedge-shaped pillow under the crib mattress to elevate the head end. This slight incline can aid in draining mucus from the nasal passages.

Use a Nasal Spray or Drops:

For severe congestion or when saline drops alone aren’t sufficient, consult with your pediatrician about using a nasal spray or drops specifically designed for infants. These medications can help shrink swollen nasal tissues and provide temporary relief. Follow the instructions carefully and use them as recommended by the healthcare professional.

Encourage Fluid Intake:

Keeping your baby hydrated can help thin the mucus, making it easier for them to clear their nasal passages. Offer breast milk, formula, or water (if they’re old enough) at regular intervals. A well-hydrated baby will find it easier to expel mucus through coughing, sneezing, or swallowing.

Use a Warm Compress:

Applying a warm compress to your baby’s congested nose can provide relief. Soak a clean washcloth in warm water, wring out the excess, and gently place it over the baby’s nose and face for a few minutes. The warmth can help loosen mucus and make breathing more comfortable.

Steamy Bathroom:

Create a steamy environment by running a hot shower and sitting with your baby in the bathroom for a few minutes. The steam can help loosen mucus and alleviate congestion. Ensure that the water is not too hot and keep a safe distance to avoid any accidents.

Breast Milk or Saline Drops for Sore Nose:

If your baby’s nose becomes sore or dry due to constant wiping or congestion, apply a small amount of breast milk or saline drops using a clean cotton swab to moisturize and soothe the area.


Nasal congestion in babies can cause discomfort and difficulty breathing. By implementing these gentle and safe methods, you can effectively treat nasal congestion and provide relief for your little one. Remember to consult with your pediatrician if the congestion persists or is accompanied by other concerning symptoms. With proper care and attention, you can help your baby breathe easier and ensure their comfort and well-being.