Cold and RSV season is here and it is important to know how to treat a baby’s cold. Or determine when it is appropriate to take your baby to the doctor to rule out RSV or some other cause of cold-like symptoms. When your baby is sick, keep in mind that your baby’s cold can be just as hard on you, since there isn’t a ton of things you can do other than give your baby extra snuggles and treat the symptoms.
Disclosure: This post isn’t medical advice. Please speak to your baby’s pediatrician if you have any concerns.
Increase Baby’s Fluids
The best thing that you can do to help ease your baby’s discomfort and keep their cold symptoms from worsening by ensuring your baby gets sufficient liquids. Increase the amount of breast milk or formula if your baby is less than four months old. Older babies can have a bit of water.
Use Saline Solution
To help relieve your baby’s stuffy nose and congestion, try using over-the-counter saline solution drops into each nostril. Then use a rubber bulb syringe or the Electric Nose Frida after a few minutes to extract the mucus and liquid. If your baby seems to struggle breathing through their nose while feeding, using the saline can help open up their airway so they can eat. Try putting a small amount of petroleum jelly to the outside your baby’s nostrils to help reduce irritation.
Try A Steamy Bathroom
When my babies had a cold, I would often sit in the bathroom while the hot shower was going for about 15 minutes. The steam will help loosen congestion and make it easier for your baby to breathe.
Run a Cool-Mist Vaporizer
I would also use a cool-mist vaporizer or humidifier to help increase the moisture in their bedroom. Additional mostiure can help provide some relief and help make it easier for your baby to breathe.
Give Baby a Warm Bath
A warm bath could also work, and might provide your baby with some additional comfort.
Raise the Crib Mattress at a Slight Incline
Sleeping at a slight incline can help relieve postnasal drip and allow your baby to sleep better. Use a couple of rolled up towels between the crib springs and mattress. NEVER place any pillows or another prop in your baby’s crib. Doing so increases the risk of suffocation. Also, don’t allow your infant to sleep in their car seat, the car seat isn’t designed for sleeping.
Be sure to contact your pediatrician at the first sign of any illness in an infant less than three months old, especially in instances of a fever of 100.4 degrees or if she has a cough. Your child’s pediatrician can give you guidelines about what constitutes a fever and what you should do to treat it. If baby’s symptoms don’t improve within five to seven days, her cough worsens, she’s wheezing or gasping (possible pneumonia or respiratory syncytial virus, or RSV), or tugs at her ear (possible ear infection), your pediatrician should also be notified immediately.