It is miserable to watch kids suffering from any sickness. Cough and congestion can be the most common reasons for visiting the doctor if you are having an infant or a toddler. There are several in-home treatments available for the kids like using humidifiers, nasal aspirators or drops, steamy showers, etc. However, the application of home remedies for baby congestion relief, toddlers and infants is considered to be safe and result-oriented. In addition, Indian households still trust home remedies as a first-line treatment for cough and cold.

In this blog, you will find some useful home remedies for curing congestion in babies, toddlers and kids along with advantages and some exceptions to it. The aim is to educate you on how to get mucus out of your baby’s chest home remedies.

Advantages Of Using Home Remedies For Curing Chest Congestion In Babies, Toddlers, and Kids:

Find some advantages of using home remedies for congestion in the chest below to relieve chest congestion in babies, toddlers, and children, offering gentle relief without the risk of medication side effects.

Home Remedies for curing chest congestion in babies, toddlers and kids VS Home Remedies for curing chest congestion in babies, toddlers and kids

  • A home remedy is an age-old trusted method for the treatment of any generic health issue.
  • A home remedy is prepared from things available in your home, so you need not have to worry about the shelf life and expiry dates of the ingredients used.
  • You can be 100% sure that the ingredients used are safe and fresh.
  • There are no side effects associated with home remedies.

Causes Of Chest Congestion In Babies, Toddlers, And Kids:

Chest congestion and cough occur in a baby especially when seasons change or during the winter months. But for newborns even a little bit of the mucus, irritation from particles in air or even breast milk that they have spit up can be a reason for Chest congestion as their nasal passages are very tiny and even a little bit of mucus makes the baby congested. So this is the time when you have to take the most precautions. 

  • Viral Infections.
  • Low/ immature immunity.
  • Bacteria
  • Post-nasal drip 
  • Allergies.
  • Acid Reflux.
  • Asthma.

Symptoms Of Chest Congestion In Babies, Toddlers, And Kids:

  • Difficulty in breathing
  • Runny nose
  • Extensive coughing
  • Mild Fever
  • Restless and sleepless nights
  • Inability to suck breast milk (in case of babies below 02 years) and associated Vomiting (at times)
  • Increased irritability and crankiness at night/supper time
  • A rattling noise from the chest
  • Fast breathing or Breathing through the nose

Now, let’s discuss Home Remedies for baby congestion relief for Babies, Toddlers, and Kids.

Home Remedies For Curing Chest Congestion In Babies, Toddlers, And Kids:

Natural remedies for cough for infants can be divided into the following sections for the effective treatment of cough and cold in babies and toddlers:

  1. Home remedies dealing with food/herbs for curing baby chest congestion, toddlers, and kids.
    2. Home remedies revolving around the clothing of babies, toddlers, and kids for curing chest congestion.
    3. Home remedies revolve around room settings for curing chest congestion in babies, toddlers and kids.

1. Let’s Begin With The First Set, Revolving Around Food Items And Herbs – Home Remedies For Curing Chest Congestion In Babies, Toddlers, And Kids:

Please note, that this section doesn’t apply to infants below the age of 6 months. Therefore, kindly check the ‘Age Recommended’ section of the information.

Below recommended are infant chest congestion home remedies or chest congestion infant home remedies that you can use to help your baby get relief from this problem. These chest congestion infants’ home remedies are suggested based on the age category of a baby therefore please be careful while trying any home remedies for cough with phlegm in infants.

Age Recommended: 6 Months To 1-Year-Old

  • Carrot juice – It is helpful in treating dry cough. It can be served once a day.
  • Probiotics – It enhances immunity and reduces the likelihood of cough and cold.
  • Peppermint – It acts as a soothing agent for a sore throat and also breaks down the congested mucus. It can be inhaled via the vaporization method.
  • Encourage your child to enjoy fresh citrus juices, rich in vitamin C, kiwi fruits, oranges, and pumpkin seeds which are rich in zinc. These help to diminish the duration of any cough and cold that arises due to chest congestion.
  • Barley water –  Barley water is a great remedy for fever, cold, and cough.

Age Recommended: 1 Year And Above

  • A pinch of Turmeric powder is added to Warm Milk. For best results, serve two times a day.
  • Hot milk with honey. For optimum results, give this to your child before sleep at night.
  • Warm water with salt for gargling. It would be given to babies above 1.5 years of age. However, if your kid is unable to gargle then simply give him/her warm water to drink.
  • Give your toddler Ginger juice with a teaspoon of honey. For best results, serve him/her thrice a day before feeds/meals.
  • Give your toddler Tulsi leaf juice with a teaspoon of honey and ginger to control the night-time bouts of cough caused due to chest congestion in toddlers.
  • Take a few leaves of tulsi, thick-leaved lavender, and Ruta (pre-heated). Warm them in an iron pan over a low flame. Now, crush the warmed leaves to extract the juice. Feed a quarter spoon of this juice to your kid thrice a day.
  • Mix a pinch of Jayfal (Nutmeg) powder with mom’s milk/ cow’s milk/honey. Give one teaspoon of this mixture twice a day on an empty stomach to your toddler. Jaiphal for babies helps release congestion. Using nutmeg for baby nasal congestion keeps the airways clear of mucus and stimulates the chest to cough up phlegm, therefore, making their health better. In addition, parents also use nutmeg for babies’ colds, coughs, and bad breath, to reduce fever and soothe the lungs. It can also help reduce symptoms associated with other respiratory ailments such as asthma.
  • Mix lemon juice (1 tbsp) and honey (1 tbsp). Warm this mixture in the microwave for 2 minutes. Give 1 tablespoon of this warmed-up mixture three times a day to your toddler. 
  • Chicken soup.
  • Blend 2 tablespoons lemon juice with 1 tablespoon honey and add a pinch of cayenne pepper. You can use a small quantity of freshly grated onion in place of cayenne pepper. Onions trigger the cough reflex and bring up the mucus/ phlegm.
  • Take 6 medium onions. Peel and chop them and put them with 4 tablespoons of honey into a bowl set over a pan of boiling water. Cover and simmer for 2 hours. Strain the mixture. Serve it 1 Tablespoon to your toddler at least once a day for three days.
  • Take 5-6 cloves and mix it in honey (1 cup). Leave this in the fridge overnight. In the morning, remove the cloves and give a teaspoon to your toddler at frequent intervals. This will relieve his/her sore throat caused by chest congestion.
  • Take the flower of a vasaka plant (found abundantly in rural India). Crush it and extract its juice. Mix this juice with an equal quantity of honey and feed the toddler frequently in a day. It will cure the cough caused by chest congestion.

Age Recommended: 2 Years And Above

  • Take the acorus plant, and grind the plant in water till it becomes a thick paste. On a low flame, warm down the paste and then spread it over the forehead. This will relieve the headache and nasal block associated with cough bouts due to chest congestion.
  • A spice tea/kadha as we know in India can also be tried. To make the tea, add ½ teaspoon of powdered ginger and a pinch of clove and cinnamon powder to a cupful of boiling water, stir and give it to the baby in a sipper to sip slowly in the daytime.

Age Recommended: 3 years and above

  • An old-fashioned cure is simply giving a mulethi stick to sip to your babies of 3-5 years ago. It sweetly coats the throat and its Vitamin C cures the chest congestion and sore throat. Mulethi for cough can work wonders. Mulethi for babies or mulethi for kids can also treat their problem of cough.
  • Ajwain Water – Giving Ajwain water at regular intervals can also provide relief from cough and clear chest congestion. 

2. Now, Let’s Look At The Other Set Revolving Around Clothing- Home Remedies For Curing Chest Congestion In Babies, Toddlers, And Kids:

While taking care of the baby’s food is an essential way to ease their constipation problems, a parent can also take care of other indirect factors that can improve your baby’s health condition. Clothing is one such factor. There are simple steps or changes that you can bring to your baby’s wardrobe while he or she suffers from constipation. Below are some ways that can aid in improving their condition.

  • Do not let your toddler roam in wet clothes. Change your clothes immediately.
  • During winters and the weather change, prefer warm clothing for your little one.
  • Always use a clean and soft handkerchief for cleaning the baby’s blocked nose.
  • Keep two handkerchiefs in their pockets, if possible: one to be used for sneezing/coughing or wiping nose and the other one to wipe hands before eating meals. Tell them to avoid using anybody else’s hand towels/bath towels.
  • Change the pillow covers and bed sheets every two-three days while the babies are down with cough and cold. Things to know before sending your kids to pre-school
  • Do not let the child carry on with a fully loaded diaper or wet pants. Age Recommended: 3 years and above
    • An old-fashioned cure is simply giving a mulethi stick to sip to your babies of 3-5 years ago. It sweetly coats the throat and its Vitamin C cures the chest congestion and sore throat. Mulethi for cough can work wonders.
    • Ajwain Water – Giving Ajwain water at regular intervals can also provide relief from cough and clear chest congestion. 

3. Now Let’s Move To The Third And Last Set Related To Room Settings – Home Remedies For Curing Chest Congestion In Babies, Toddlers, And Kids:

This part of the blog looks at chest infection in infants home remedies related to the environment of the room that a baby lives in. The atmosphere around a baby can also affect his or her health to a great extent. Follow these simple steps to treat your baby’s congestion issue.

  • Plenty of sleep is really significant as when the child is inactive due to sickness, it becomes hard for the body to fight off infections 
  • The room in which baby sleeps must be airy, well-cross-ventilated, and not at all damp.
  • In case you use electric blowers or charcoal fireplaces, make sure the baby is not in direct contact with the blower or the ash of the charcoal.
  • If you are using plastic dry sheets on the baby’s bed, cover them with a cotton/woollen bed cover so that way, the baby won’t feel cold at night when the temperatures drop.
  • If your toddler loves to bundle up inside the blanket, try covering him/her on all sides in the blanket at night especially.
  • Pour a few drops of eucalyptus oil on the pillow and the blanket to be used for the baby before you put them to sleep. When the baby sleeps, she will inhale the oil which will help to remove the chest congestion and let him/her breathe and sleep peacefully. Recommended age: For babies above two months of age.
  • Leave a few drops of chamomile tincture in a bowl on the heater/radiator in the bedroom overnight. It is a comforting herb and helps to put the baby to sleep at night. Recommended age: For babies above two months of age.
  • Apply a few drops of mustard oil to your baby’s nostrils. Oil’s warmth will relieve the infant’s blocked nose caused due to chest congestion. Recommended age: 5 days after birth.

Note: Be sure your baby doesn’t have any skin allergies, then only apply this above-mentioned home remedy.

  • Heat a tablespoon of mustard oil on low flame with one/ two cloves of garlic. Once the oil is back to room temperature, massage the baby’s back, legs, stomach, navel, and hands with it. Wipe the baby with a warm water towel and then put on his nightclothes and tuck him/her to sleep. Check out the ways to make your kids stop thumb-sucking. The oil massage will slowly help the baby to remain warm throughout the night. This is one of the best home remedies for curing baby nasal congestion, along with Toddlers, and Kids. Recommended age: As long as the umbilical cord of the baby doesn’t fall off naturally by itself. To keep it safe, introduce massage only after 40 days of the baby’s birth. 
  • You can apply any nasal spray/drops or even a massage with good old Vicks BabyRub. Follow the directions to use which are mentioned in the box. It is safe and especially for the kids. Recommended age: 3 months and above.
  • Once the cold has been cured, change your baby’s toothbrush immediately.
  • Put some rhythm/fun in your massage by using a chest percussion technique. Make the baby lie on his/her stomach on a firm bed/mat. Gently tap your hands over his/her back, moving from the lower back up towards his/her neck. Repeat several times till you feel the child’s congestion has started to loosen up.
  • Try mustard poultice to reduce chest congestion in babies. Mix one part of mustard powder and 2 parts of flour in a bowl. Add just enough water to make a paste. Spread the paste on a thin cotton towel and fold the towel in half. Apply a little petroleum jelly on the child’s chest and then press the mustard poultice towel on the chest. Check the child’s skin and remove the towel if it becomes red/ too hot for him/her.
  • Try using humidifiers in the child’s bedroom to moisten the air at night in winter. This will prevent nocturnal coughing and allow the baby to have sound sleep.

So, these were the Home Remedies for curing chest congestion in babies, toddlers, and kids. Herbs are cheaper than most drugs, they are easily available and in most cases, they are just as effective and often safer. 

Home Remedies For Cold And Cough

While breastfeeding, intake of any medication directly has the potential to get into your breast milk and affect the health of the baby. They can reduce the supply of milk also. Chest congestion in baby treatment is something that is very common and should be cured as soon as possible. During a cold and cough, you can relieve the symptoms without taking any meditation by using some effective home remedies for cough and chest congestion in infants. 

Home Remedies While Breastfeeding

If any mother is suffering from a cold then she must sip warm liquids, such as tea and chicken soup, which can soothe her scratchy throat and loosen congestion.

  1. Honey and lemon with warm water are also beneficial for sore throat.
  2. You can also gargle with hot salt water. This is one of the home remedies for cough in infants.
  3. If you have an infant stuffy nose then you can use saline baby nasal congestion sprays.
  4. You can also take a stream that will reduce soreness and open your nasal passage.
  5. Jaiphal for a 2-month-old baby is one of the perfect ones to go with.
  6. Avoid intake of any vitamin or its supplement while breastfeeding as it has the potential to dry up your milk supply.
  7. Maintain good hygiene to prevent your baby from catching a cold.
  8. Always cover your sneezes and coughs with the crook of your arm or a hanky. 

Home Remedies For Baby Congestion Relief:

Some of the best and most effective home remedies for congested chest in infants are given as follows:

  1. Rest is the best medicine for a baby or kid with a cold and cough. If your child is uncomfortable then try some home remedies to ease them.
  1.  Keep humidity in the room. Humidity is beneficial to coughs for two reasons. First, it enables you to hydrate your child’s sinus tissues. This prevents dryness, which can cause an increase in mucus production and, as a result, a worsening cough. Second, humid air aids in the thinness of your child’s mucus. This makes it easier for them to cough up and expel mucus from their systems. Run a cool-mist humidifier for a few hours each day to increase humidity in your environment.
  2. Breathing in steam is another way to relieve a stuffy nose baby and mucus.
  3. To loosen up dried mucus, use salt water (saline) nose spray or drops, followed by asking your child to blow his or her nose or sucking the liquid from the nose with a bulb syringe. Warm water will suffice if you do not have nose spray or drops.
  4. Keep your child hydrated with warm water or broth. Check the diapers of the babies frequently. 
  5. For toddlers and infants use a bulb syringe to remove mucus and prevent congestion.
  6. Position – Holding your baby in an upright position on your chest may relieve the congestion of the child due to gravity. It will also help the baby sleep peacefully. 
  7. Avoid irritants: Avoid smoking near the baby, use scented candles, and vacuum frequently to keep the air clean avoiding chest congestion for the baby. 

By following these tips you can get relief from colds and coughs at home only.

For toddlers, there are certain food items like jaiphal for a 2-month-old baby to keep them away from infections and one of them is Breast milk – Breast milk is a good source of antibodies and can also strengthen the immune system of a child. You can also check if your baby is congested. Breast milk is therefore one of the home remedies for congested chests in infants.

Exceptions Of Home Remedies:

  • Traditional home remedies for congestion in the chest may not work effectively if your kid is having a breathing disorder, not due to the baby having a blocked nose.
  • A home remedy may also not work if a child is allergic to any herb or food.
  • If a child is having a high fever (101 degrees F or more), then it is good to avoid natural remedies for cough for infants as they may not be reliable.

Age Recommended for Adults:

Many doctors have suggested increasing fluid intake and inhaling heated, humidified air to thin secretions during cold preparations that may be effective in adults. In a randomized controlled trial, an herbal solution was shown to reduce the duration and severity of 10 different cold symptoms.

When To Consult A Doctor?

If your baby, kid, or toddler is unable to eat due to chest congestion or there are severe breathing problems that they make noises while breathing, if your baby is below 3 months and has a fever over 100 degrees or higher, or if your child’s mucus does not go away for 3 days, consult a doctor immediately.

Preventive Measures That Can Be Taken To Avoid Chest Congestion:

We all have heard prevention is better than cure. Well, this holds utmost importance when you are talking about a small child’s health. No parent would like their little angel to suffer from health issues such as constipation at such a young age. Below we have listed a few preventive measures that can be implemented:

  • The best preventive measure that can be taken to prevent cold, chest congestion, etc is to maintain hygiene be it in terms of washing hands frequently, toys they play with, door handles, or the food, they eat to prevent germs or bacteria from entering their body.
  • Wear the proper amount of clothes in winter
  • Cover your mouth when you sneeze as many germs are expelled in the air when you sneeze without covering your mouth which can cause cold or respiratory problems due to bacteria entering into the body

Remember: The whole aim of suggesting home remedies for curing chest congestion in babies, toddlers, and kids is to enable you to handle small emergencies and in fact, not let them become a serious ailment. But if you find nothing is working for your child, do not let it go on for long. Consult your doctor as soon as possible.

FAQ’s on Home Remedies For Curing Chest Congestion

1. What are some home treatments for chest congestion?

The best home remedies for baby cough and chest congestion include tapping your child’s back with a cupped hand. In order to do this, you can lay your child across your lap and then tap their back in order to loosen the mucus. This can significantly help with infant chest congestion. In addition to that, you can also take your child and make him sit on your lap in a steam room to help with chest congestion. In case your child doesn’t find it convenient to sit inside a steam room, you can use the steam from a steam iron and direct it towards your child to help him/her inhale the steam. A humidifier can also be helpful.

2. How common is the problem of chest congestion?

Congestion is a pretty common problem in babies, toddlers and kids. Usually, this problem relieves itself with proper care and remedies but you should consult your paediatrician in case your baby is too uncomfortable or if the problem persists beyond a few days. You should make sure that your child isn’t losing appetite, or weight or is becoming dehydrated.

Having said that, it is important to note that chest or nasal congestion requires attention and care because if this condition is left untreated, it can lead to serious accompanying issues like SIDS (sudden infant death syndrome).

3. Is it possible to prevent chest congestion/chest congestion remedies?

It is very difficult to prevent toddler chest congestion because children are prone to respiratory tract infections but it is possible to take proper care and precautions to prevent chest congestion from worsening. You can take note of the aforementioned home remedies and treatments to effectively take care of your child’s chest congestion.

4. How do you get mucus out of a child’s chest?

Baby chest congestion can be a worrying problem for a parent. However, there are several home remedies for congestion in toddlers such as:

  • Encourage hydration: Make sure your child drinks plenty of fluids, such as water or clear soups, to help thin out mucus and make it easier to cough up.
  • Use a humidifier: Running a humidifier in your child’s room can help loosen mucus and make it easier to cough up.
  • Steam: Sitting with your child in a steamy bathroom or using a warm mist humidifier can also help to loosen mucus.
  • Chest physiotherapy: This involves gentle tapping or clapping on the child’s chest and back to help loosen the mucus and make it easier to cough up. This technique should be done by a healthcare professional.
  • Saline nose drops: These can help to loosen mucus in the nasal passages, which can help to reduce congestion.

5. When should I worry about my baby’s congestion?

Baby chest congestion is very common, especially during their first year of life. However, there are certain signs to look out for that may indicate a more serious condition and warrant medical attention even after trying several home remedies for congestion in babies. Here are some things to notice:

  • Difficulty breathing: If your baby is having trouble breathing or seems to be struggling to breathe, seek immediate medical attention.
  • Persistent congestion: If your baby’s congestion lasts longer than two weeks or seems to be getting worse, it may be a sign of an infection or other underlying condition.
  • High fever: If your baby has a fever of 100.4°F (38°C) or higher, it may be a sign of an infection that requires medical attention.
  • Refusal to eat or drink: If your baby is refusing to eat or drink, it may be a sign that their congestion is making it difficult for them to swallow or breathe while feeding.
  • Wheezing: If your baby is making a whistling sound when they breathe, it may be a sign of a respiratory infection or asthma.

You can take your child to a doctor if any of these signs are noticed. 

6. How long does chest congestion typically last in babies and toddlers?

Chest congestion in babies and toddlers often lasts from a week to ten days, however this might vary depending on the reason and severity. Congestion tends to last longer, especially if the child’s immune system is still developing or if they are exposed to irritants such as smoke or allergies. However, with proper treatment, including home remedies and medical assistance as needed, most cases of chest congestion resolve within this timeframe, allowing the kid to breathe more peacefully again.

7. Can I use essential oils to relieve chest congestion in my child?

While some essential oils, such as eucalyptus and peppermint, can help relieve chest congestion in children when used correctly and diluted, it is important to use them with caution. According to research, these oils contain compounds with decongestant and antimicrobial properties, which can help clear nasal passages and make breathing easier. However, essential oils can be potent and cause side effects, particularly in young children. Always consult a paediatrician before using essential oils on your child, and if you do, make sure they are properly diluted and used according to safe guidelines to avoid any possible risks.

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About vidula

I am a retired short service commission officer of Education branch of IAF. Training and educational administration are my forte. Presently enjoying being a mother to my 8 year old prodigy{daughter}. Love music,movies and my daily walks...Love of writing made me land here!

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