Baby colds and coughs

On average, children can catch a cold three to eight times a year* so while your baby’s immune system is still developing they are likely to contract several colds.

How can my baby catch a cold?

  • Babies can come into contact with viruses by putting contaminated toys into their mouths, which is something we know all babies love to do!
  • Your baby can easily come into contact with other people who are carrying a cold virus and not have the mature immune system to fight it off.

The signs of a cold include:

  • A runny or congested nose
  • A clear nasal discharge that may become thicker and even turn green over the coming days
  • After being thick, the discharge becomes runny and clear again
  • When your baby develops a low grade temperature during the first 48 hours
  • Sneezing, coughing, red and watery eyes
  • A hoarse voice

Treating my baby’s cold

  • keep him well hydrated with plenty of fluids
  • keep her room at a regular temperature
  • consider using an air purifier to remove pollutants and allergens that might be irritating your baby’s respiratory system
  • keep your baby’s room at an even temperature (20-22 degrees)
  • if your baby has a fever, you can treat with age appropriate anagesics to keep them comfortable
  • heat a flannel with warm water and place over baby’s nose and cheeks (ensure airways are clear). This may help loosen some of the nasal congestion and soothe headaches
  • Use a humidifier to moisten the air or sit in a steamy bathroom with your baby
  • give lots of cuddles

When should I see a doctor?

  • When your baby has temperature above 37.5ºC and is less than 3 months old
  • If the symptoms of a cold persist for over a week
  • Baby begins to wheeze or gasp for air
  • If your baby begins to pull on his ears
  • If you are at all concerned with the health of your baby, then check with your doctor

* Source: Colds in children –

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