27 answers

Horrible Congestion in 11 Month Old

I am wondering if anyone else has had this problem. My daughter has had congestion in her chest since 3 weeks old and is now 11 months. I have asked the doctor repeatedly for reasons why or ways to help with it. All I seem to get is offers for clarinex or nysonex. I am one of those people who do not want to give daily meds unless it is absolutly neccesary. So far I use a humidifier on days that the congestion makes it hard for her to breath, problem is she has problems napping or sleeping when it is on. Any suggestions would be GREATLY appreciated.

What can I do next?

So What Happened?™

I would like to say thank you to everyone who responded. I could not get my daughter into a new doctor so I went back to her normal one but was more stern about my concerns. The doctor is going to work with me on finding out what allergy she has. This week we are checking for milk and dust allergy and then on from there.
Finally the congestion is gone. She is allergic to milk. Thanks again!!

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My Son had lots of congestion problems. At eight months old he got an ear infection. They put him on antibiotics and after two weeks the infection was gone but there was still fluid in the ears. They kept him on the antibiotics to prevent more infections until the fluid could drain off. After a month the doctor said if they could not get the fluid off they would have to put tubes in his ears. He felt that the overall congestion in his chest and sinuses was preventing the fluid from draining and put him on Singulair granuals and Zyrtec. After about a week the congestion was gone. I couldn't believe how much it had helped him. When we went back the fluid was gone out of his ears and they decided to keep him on the allergy meds. I did not like the idea of daily meds either at this age but the change was so dramatic. He still gets colds occasionally but he does not have the constant congestion that goes on and on. I hope this helps.

My daughter also stayed very congested, but more so in the head and nasal areas versus the chest. We were referred to both an ear nose throat doctor, as well as an allergist. We found out that she had a severe sinus infection and needed to be treated with antibiotics. Thankfully she wasn't allergic to anything, but it was worth getting the test done. The allergist ended up prescribing a decongestant which was ultimately the only thing that seemed to help. The clarinex and other stuff didn't work for us either. Try seeing those two types of doctors and see if they can help. Good luck!

It may be time to consider meds. Has she ever had breathing treatments? Could it be asthma? I would definatly talk to the dr. about it.

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My daugher has been congested since birth too. She is now 20 months. They have decided she needs to have tonsils and adnoids taken out. Besides the congestion, she has sleep apnea and has trouble eating due to the large tonsils. We go tomorrow to have her tonsils and adnoids out. I hope this will help with her congestion. You may want to ask your doctor about the T&A surgery.

1 mom found this helpful

It may be time to consider meds. Has she ever had breathing treatments? Could it be asthma? I would definatly talk to the dr. about it.

Hi J.- My daughter had the same problem after returning to the doctor- every week for three weeks!! they gave me a a nebulizer! I gave her breathing treatments 3 times a day for a week and he congestion cleared up!

If she is having a hard time breathing- ask for a nebulizer!

Your daughter sounds like she has asthma! I have a daughter who is now 23 and she had all those problems and I finally got her to an asthma Dr. (own my own) and found out that she had asthma and allergys and now she is doing great!! That Dr. saved my daughters life because if I hadn't gotten her to him when I did she would have probably died within a few months. Good Luck to you and your daughter!

J.,

Have you ever heard of RSV? It's a dangerous respiratory infection that occurs in infants. I'm not saying your child has this because if she did she wouldn't be able to breath properly. BUT, what I am saying is you should take her to another doctor. Someone who'll listen, because that could turn into something very bad for her. Babies can die from RSV and it can cause serious damage to the lungs. Please, I would get another opinion and you are entitled to it. It's very hard to find dr.'s now a days that will listen to you. When you find one, you better hang on to him/her.

And pray over her! God is still in the healing business.

God Bless!
In Him,
G.

As soon as I read your problem, I knew it was a food allergy. I have the same problems with congestion due to food allergies at 40 yrs. old! I definitely would change doctors!!!

My Son had lots of congestion problems. At eight months old he got an ear infection. They put him on antibiotics and after two weeks the infection was gone but there was still fluid in the ears. They kept him on the antibiotics to prevent more infections until the fluid could drain off. After a month the doctor said if they could not get the fluid off they would have to put tubes in his ears. He felt that the overall congestion in his chest and sinuses was preventing the fluid from draining and put him on Singulair granuals and Zyrtec. After about a week the congestion was gone. I couldn't believe how much it had helped him. When we went back the fluid was gone out of his ears and they decided to keep him on the allergy meds. I did not like the idea of daily meds either at this age but the change was so dramatic. He still gets colds occasionally but he does not have the constant congestion that goes on and on. I hope this helps.

My son who is now two has been dealing with that problem off & on for the past year. I tried a humidifier and to me it didn't help at all, so I went to the doctor and the prescribed me something different from the meds they have given you. I can't think of the name off hand but if you go to your doctor and tell them that what they have given you hasn't been working, they can tell you better. This medicine you only give to them twice a day for 5 days and it should clear it right up. found it, the name is Prelone. They gave him that on the 22nd of last month so he no longer has to take it but it helped so much.But you know what, my son has asthma. I had been taking him to the doctor since he was six months addressing that concern and they gave me different meds that didn't work and then a little after he turned 1 is when they finally admitted that his problem was asthma, so you might want to ask about that especially if you have anyone in your family who has had any problem like that.

Dear J.
My friend had the same problem with her son. The dr. said that it could be allergies...maybe your daughter is allergic to the bedding, laundry detergent, carpet, curtains...etc. My friend's son ended up being allergic to the mold in the bathroom adjacent to his bedroom. Have you tried keeping her in a different room for a few days to see if it helps? Good luck.
C.

Hi J.,

My experience has been that congestion that lasts that long isn't just allergies. I would think that allergies would respond to one of the antihistamines your daughter has taken. My cousin's son had this same type of wet cough/chest congestion, rattling in his chest for a few months. I don't know if you've tried it or not but milk allergies can cause the same symptoms that you're saying your daughter has. I told my cousin to try soy instead of cow's milk/formula with her son and she said it was amazing and that within a week her son sounded 95%better. He still had the occasional cough but not like before. We have family history of milk allergy but because the doctors had not suggested it to her, she thought nothing of it. I hope this helps. It's a little more expensive than cow's milk but if your little one benefits, it's definitely an option worth trying. Good luck!
-I.
ps-please let me know if it helps or not

I do not believe that doctors know everything. So if you are asking your doctor for help with your child and he/she can not give you any answers, change doctors. Keep changing until someone knows what they are talking about.

My son had ear infections from the time he was 6 months until his surgery to put plugs? in. (to releive the pressure) He was one years old. His ears are now extremely sensitive. He is nine. Since then we changed doctors. When my daughter was born and she started having ear infections, my doctor sugested she get plugs? and refered me to a specialist who also said that plugs? would be a good idea. I opted not and changed my doctor. The new doctor told me to give her benadryl. My daughter is now two and ear infection free. Everytime she has a sniffle, I give her benadryl and wahla......... it dries it right up!

Hi~ I have had this problem and like you do not like meds. I would have a ritual before naps or bedtime. I would bring them into the bathroom and run the shower to steam up the room, and play for like 30 mins. Then drop saline drops in their nose and suction it out with a bulb suction, then get vicks vapor rub for babies and rub it on their chest. They also have that vapor bath by Johnson and Johnson. Good luck and it WILL runs its course.~C.

My son had bad congestion for what seemed like forever too. The doctor finally put him on an allergy medicine (zirtec) and it seemed to work. I don't like giving medicine everyday either, but if you have to make sure it's something that's going to work. I would definitely be more agressive with the doctor or find a second opinion because untreated congestion, especially if it is caused by allergies can cause ear infections and other problems. Hope this help some. Good luck.

Does she wheeze? My nephew has asthma and always sounds congested he will sometimes wheeze for several minutes. Also I would stop using the humidifier until I asked my doctor about ashtma and aspiration. My daughter aspirates liquid (unless it is thick). neither my daughter or my nephew can be around a humidifier, it seems like it is helping them but because their lungs are already "moist" and weakened bacteria breed in their lungs causing massive infections. I learned that the hard way after my daughter was lifeflighted to Oschner with pneumonia.

When my youngest was born, it sounded like he was breathing through fluid. It would get better and worse and then better and worse. But it was continual. By the time he was two months old, my pediatrician decided to have him checked for reflux. I thought she was crazy but he did have reflux. He wasn't throwing up or spitting up but it was just enough to cause him to have mild aspiration. This may not be the case with your daughter but it may be worth looking into.

Sounds like time for another opinion. It's not breaking loyalty to your pediatrician to ask for more tests or another opnion.

Seriously. They are not listening to you. Have they done any diagnostics to find out what is causing the issue?

I haven't been through this particular issue, but my daughter suffered numerous ear infections. After having so many in a year, I asked to see an ear, nose , and throat doctor. They put me off saying that it wasn't bad enough for that. Finally the next time she had one, I took her to the ENT (my ins doesn't require referral)... and they recommend her tonsils come out.

After the surgery the ENT told me that they were worse than the tonsils of a 17 yr old they had worked on earlier. (my daughter is 4). She hasn't even been sick since. (august 06 to now).

So it is not above the realm of possibility that it is a mistake. They could be right. But wouldn't you rather have the tests to prove they are right, rather than take chances with your child's life....

My daughter has had this problem since she was an infant and is about to turn 5 in 2 weeks. After many trips to the ER, because of being so congested and not being able to breathe we were finally sent to a Pulmonologist. She was diagnosed with Asthma and put on meds. She still suffered from congested and the obly thing the doctor would do would give her Prednisone (steroid) so I finally got fed up last month b/c she is on a steroid almost every 4-6 weeks. So we had a CT Skan done and it showed chronic blockage of her sinus cavity. They put her on Augmentin for 14 days and you wouldnt believe how much she sneezed out. We were then referred to an ENT (Ear, Nose, Throat) doctor. We actually jsut met with him this afternoon and she is scheduled for surgery next week. The CT Skan showed that her adenoids were inlarge and blocking some of her airway - and they can hold a lot of bacteria. So she is to have those removed. But I just wanted to give you some ideas to what it could be or could not be. Hopefully, your daughter wont have this much trouble. Oh, my daughter is too on Nasonex and Singulair along with 3 other prescribed meds. I've also noticed with all 3 of my children that when they are teething they do have congestion in their chest. So, that could be a reason why. I hope I helped you in someway!

Hey J.,
I am a certified Pharmacy Technician and a mother of 2 children, my youngest has a lot of problems with drainage (which causes chest congestion)we are planning on getting tubes put in his ears, if your child keeps fluid behind his ear drums that is a sign that they aren't draining properly and it causes horrible coughing and chest congestion, We give our son a prescription antihistamine each night before bed called Ed chlorPed (it is a long acting antihistamine) and it helps with the drainage going into his chest without cause agitation like benadryl does.
Hope this helps~Good Luck
~B. J. McEwen, TN

We had this problem with our daughter (now 9). Many nights I would sit with her in her car seat (elevated position) so she and I could get a little sleep. Then my husband tilted her mattress to give it a little elevation (NOT TOO MUCH or she'll scoot down). This worked wonders although sometimes we would still have to revert to the car seat. Also ... I didn't like medication or the humidifier (wallpaper was coming off the walls) and an elderly lady told me to use Thyme Oil (found at health store). I put a drop or two in a potpourri jar. The only problem with that is that toddlers are facinated with flames. I had to really really look for the perfect size jar to hold a tea light candle and finally found one with Christmas trees on it at a dollar store. Even though many people would ask what a Christmas tree was doing in her room, she slept wonderfully. But ... again you have to be very very mildful to blow out the candle once the room fills with the scent and to place high. Hope this helps.

I would start with switching to a new doctor for your daughter. It sounds like you are not getting the answers you are looking for. I can highly recommend GHCC (green hills children's clinic). We have been highly impressed with all of the doctors there, my son's doctor is Dr. Lillard. Make it clear to them what you have been offered and that you are not interested in just another drug, instead an explanation. Being in the medical field myself, I have become increasingly frustrated with the lack of explanation and lack of personal time and care, in exchange for numbers and reimbursement. You care about your children, make sure their doctor does too. Good luck!

My son had this stuff too. I really think it didn't stop until we got him on allregy shots when he was 18 months. He still has alot of problems with drainage in his throat though so we are going to have to talk to the allergist about that. Logan's pediatrician called it junky in the chest. Nobody could ever really explain it,some said they didn't hear it, I have decided I think it was from the allergies.

I found from experience that you know your baby better than anyone. If you feel like somethings not right speak up.

I agree with most of the other posts that you need to have some tests run. Please get referred to a pulminologist. The congestion could be reflux, aspiration problems, allergies, asthma, or poor drainage due to large adenoids/tonsils. We also dealt with this with my son (17 months now). He's on reflux meds, we thicken his liquids due to aspiration, he gets a daily breathing treatment due to reactive airway disease, and we had his enlarged adenoids and tonsils removed 3 months ago. He breathes better now than ever! I'm not suggesting your child has all of these issues, but it could certainly be one of them causing so much chest congestion. And the issue with chest congestion, is that it can turn into pneumonia if it's not treated, so please seek some testing. Good luck.

My daughter also stayed very congested, but more so in the head and nasal areas versus the chest. We were referred to both an ear nose throat doctor, as well as an allergist. We found out that she had a severe sinus infection and needed to be treated with antibiotics. Thankfully she wasn't allergic to anything, but it was worth getting the test done. The allergist ended up prescribing a decongestant which was ultimately the only thing that seemed to help. The clarinex and other stuff didn't work for us either. Try seeing those two types of doctors and see if they can help. Good luck!

Does she have trouble sleeping because the humidifier is noisy? If this is the case, you might try a new one. I bought a Vicks humidifier ($10) and it is virtually silent. It is a warm water vaporizer which means that the device boils the water. The whole unit gets a little warm, but not hot. I am not sure how it works exactly. I would say to put it in a place where she can't get to it. I have found that a humidifier helps my whole family out. We all struggle with sinus and allergy issues. I hope this helps! A.

Do you have a cat? It might be an environmental allergy. She also may be allergic to cow's milk, either in infant formula or if she is breastfed, from your own dairy intake, although usually milk allergy is accompanied by a rash. Anyway, just somethings to consider. I hope you are able to get some help.

Blessings,
D.

There is a homepathic remedy called euphorbium sinus relief. You just put a few drops in her mouth every few hours. It's completely natural with no side effects and it worked really well for my daughter when she had her first cold. Also, I would use the humidifier all the time, especially at night, as your central heat robs the air of moisture. Hope this helps.

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