What Can I Put Under a Baby's Nose to Help With the Dry Skin From a Cold?

Close-up of face of baby
Petroleum jelly might help relieve your baby's dry skin. (Image: Comstock/Stockbyte/Getty Images)

Your baby's immature immune system means that he is more prone to experiencing colds. The common cold is caused by a virus, so there is no medication that helps your baby to feel better quickly. While you are waiting for the cold to run its course, the congestion and drainage from your baby's nose can make the skin under his nose dry, irritated and raw. It is important to understand how you can help soothe this part of your baby's skin and prevent the drainage that worsens it.

Safe Substances

BabyCenter recommends applying a thin layer of petroleum jelly underneath your baby's nose to help with dry skin. Make sure to use a small amount, and choose a water-soluble variety. Lawrence E. Gibson, M.D. warns that inhaling petroleum jelly over long periods of time can eventually lead to lung problems, so only use petroleum jelly if it is necessary and talk to your baby's doctor before use.

Warnings

Avoid applying essential or mineral oils to the area underneath your baby's nose. Essential oils, like peppermint, can be too strong and dangerous for your baby to inhale. Avoid using nasal sprays unless your baby's doctor recommends it, as prolonged use can worsen congestion and irritated skin. Over-the-counter cold medications are not safe for your baby so avoid those as well.

Cold Remedies

Offer your baby plenty of fluids while you allow the cold to run its course. You can help reduce congestion and irritated skin under your baby's nose by using a saline solution and suction aspirator to remove the mucus from your baby's nose. Put a cool-mist humidifier or vaporizer into his room to help moisten the air, especially during cold winter months when your home is more likely to be dry from forced heat.

Recommendations

Your baby's cold can quickly develop into something more serious, like pneumonia. Call your baby's doctor if she develops a fever or is extremely fussy. You should also seek medical care if your baby's cough or congestion only seem to get worse after a week instead of gradually better.

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