If there’s a down side to the beauty of autumn, it’s the number of germs that start floating about, just waiting to pounce on some unsuspecting person. And when you have a baby in the house, the thought of a cold can strike fear into even the bravest of souls. Suddenly your nights, which might have just about become bearable, become a series of attempts to calm your baby’s crying, unblock their nose, and just ease their suffering a bit.
I was kindly sent a gift box by Snufflebabe containing lots of goodies – some of which we’ve used for years, and some which were new to me. We’ve been getting lots of use out of them as we’ve all been suffering with a nasty cold for the last few weeks, so I’ve put together a list of tips to help you make it through cold season when you have a baby in the house.
Keep Them Hydrated
I’ve always found that my babies struggle to feed when they have a cold. It makes sense – they breathe through their nose while they’re feeding, so it follows that they would struggle to feed and breathe at the same time if their nose is blocked. As a result I end up feeding more often, which is the best thing you can do. Your breastmilk will magically provide all of the brilliant antibodies your baby needs to fight the germs, and if you’re formula feeding they will need to keep their fluid intake up, so it really is the best thing you can do to keep feeding, even if it seems like that’s all you’re doing.
Get Yourself a Nasal Aspirator (or Snot Sucker!)
Babies can’t blow their own nose, so when they’re all blocked up, it’s really uncomfortable for them. The only way to clear it is through a nasal aspirator, which works like a suction cup. It’s simultaneously awe inspiring and disgusting! You just pop the tip at the entrance of your baby’s nose, and then pop the other end in your mouth and suck to remove the snot from their nose. We had a similar device with Max, but this one from Snufflebabe is far, far better – the previous one worked like a bulb so didn’t involve you sucking, but just wasn’t anywhere near as effective as this one is. I’m not going to lie, using it isn’t a pleasant experience, and usually involves an awful lot of crying from your baby, but the relief that it gives them afterwards means that it’s well worth doing. Having one of these in the house for cold season is essential!
If you find that the snot is quite dry, you can use this in conjunction with the Snufflebabe Nasal Drops, which are saline drops to clear the nasal passage and soften up any blockages. Just pop a few drops in, leave it a few minutes for them to work, and then use the nasal aspirator.
Steam is one of the most effective ways to remove congestion when you have a cold. I’ve found a great cold remedy for babies is to take them into the bathroom and pop them in a bouncy chair while you have a really hot shower. The steam can just do it’s job while you wash your hair – multi-tasking!
Vicks is always my go-to when I have a cold, but you can’t use it on children under two. Thankfully Snufflebabe have created a similar vapour rub, suitable for babies, which I’ve used since Max was tiny. They also do Snufflebabe Vapour Oils, which you just put a couple of drops into a bowl of hot water and leave in your baby’s room while they sleep to work their magic (obviously leave the bowl out of reach of your baby!)
All the Cuddles!
If all else fails, a nice warm bath, snuggle them up in a fluffy baby dressing gown, and have a nice long snuggle.
Disclosure: I was kindly sent the Snufflebabe products as a gift, however I was under no obligation to write this post – I love their products, and wanted to let you know about them.