It’s that time of year again…cold and flu season. With the mild weather we’d been having, we were really hoping to hold off the germs for a little longer but no such luck! Between daycare and my husband’s job at an elementary school, we were bound to get hit by the cold bug eventually. Head colds are the absolute pits for anyone involved, but it seems particularly unfair to infants as they battle through without the aid of decongestants or even a little throat lozenge.
The unfortunate truth is…no amount of medicine will make a virus go away any faster. So, the best way to cope with a cold is for your babe to tough it out. There are a few ways to provide some relief and help them endure their symptoms a bit more easily.
Saline spray ~ There’s nothing worse than trying to drink while having a stuffy nose! A little saline spray will help to loosen their little nose.
Nasal aspirator ~ Applying a little suction after using the saline spray can do wonders to clear a clogged nose. I do advise caution though, most babies tend to rebel when you go after their nose too often. I try to limit this tactic unless absolutely necessary. I found that first thing in the morning and after long naps are the best times to tackle the stuffed up nose. This has the added benefit of easing their discomfort shortly before they get a bottle so they are a bit more free to drink comfortably.
Push the fluids ~ At 5 months old, our babe is well on her way to exploring solids. But while she’s got a cold, I try to push the bottle more than the spoon. While her nose is running, it’s easier to eat from a spoon but I want to be sure she’s hydrated. I’ve resorted to splitting up her bottle feedings because she gets so exhausted battling her stuffy nose while drinking.
Humidify ~ Having a humidifier definitely helps to ease the crusty nose syndrome and lets her sleep a little more peacefully. She’s also loved having her bath every night as it relaxes her and adds to the benefits of having some humidity in the air. We almost skipped her bath a few nights but she was so happy in there we couldn’t bear to deprive her!
Cuddle time ~ The most effective treatment is likely lots of love and attention for your little one. While it may not seem to help right away, rest assured they’ll know you’re looking out for them and will definitely appreciate the extra snuggles.
Five days later and the baby is making a great recovery. She’s gotten through the worst of it and come out smiling! Of course…now we’re all coming down with the symptoms. Here’s hoping that it’ll pass a bit more quickly for us…