How can I help my baby feel more comfortable at night when she is congested or has a cold?
Upper respiratory tract infections, usually from a virus, are common in infants and young children. They can disrupt sleep in both the baby and the parents! The important thing is to make sure that your baby is well otherwise, paying careful attention to their temperature, feeding, hydration (look out for the wet nappies!) and signs of difficulty breathing. Signs your baby is having a hard time breathing might include looking like your baby is working hard to breathe, and/or you can see sucking in of the rib muscles (intercostals) and neck muscles.
When in doubt, be sure to contact your baby’s health care provider or emergency medical services as needed. Otherwise, normal saline (salt water) sprays to the nose 3-4 times per day can help. Running a room humidifier might also help your baby feel more comfortable. These viral infections often worsen on day 2-3 then get better on their own. Always check in with your doctor if your baby has a persistent cough.