12 answers

How Do You Teach a Toddler How to Blow Their Nose?

My daughter has yet another cold this year (2007) and she freaks out when I try to wipe her nose. I haven't been able to use a nasal aspirator for awhile, as I'm afraid that I will hurt her because she fights me.

Does anyone have any tips for getting a todder to learn how to blow their nose, or any tips on getting through a cold less stressful for both mom and toddler?

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My dad was recently visiting and I was running into the same situation with my 2 year olds. What he did was make a game of it. He first did it to himself, said he was going to blow his nose, and made a loud "HOOONNNKKKK" and was very animated. He did it a few times, said out loud to them "got to blow my nose, (put kleenex to his nose), HONK". He then asked them to hold the kleenex to his nose to "help" him. This was repeated for awhile and now they are better. They still hate it when I just reach down and wipe their nose, but I think that is pretty normal. Good luck.

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It may just be that her nose is sooo tender - that happened to my son and I just kept a ton of vaseline on it and used the dab technique until it healed enough for me to get him to let me wipe it again. I taught my son to blow by making silly faces and blowing out my nose while he mimics me - I'd say blow every time I blew and now he knows what it means without the silly face - but he still makes them sometimes!

My daughter (18 mos old) sort of blows but not really enough to get anything out. Show her how by doing it yourself and over exaggerate it so she can hear the air come out of your nose. Pucker up at the same time. That's the only way I've been able to get my daugter to copy me. We still use what we call the 'snot sucker' because it's really the best way to get everything out. My best tip to pass along is that we use a baby wipe instead of a kleenex and she never gets a raw nose that way.

Our son(22mo) fights the nasal aspirator too, so we just quit using it. Instead, we pin him down long enough to squirt the saline up there, and let all the junk run out (instead of sucking it out). While he's not keen on wiping his nose either, it's certainly less dramatic than the aspirator. Other than that, just increase fluid intake. We usually stock up on gatorade and decaf peppermint tea for these things because he'll drink that more readily than plain water.
As far as blowing, he's just beginning to get the idea. I hand him a tissue and get one for myself and we practice together.


OK- As awful as this is going to sound. I used to have to pin my baby down, put an arm & a leg under each of my legs, bring my legs a little close to keep her head from thrashing around, squeeze the saline up, then suck it all out. She had lots of ear infections, colds, etc. So, we were doing this A LOT!

Thankfully, she grew to hate that whole thing as much as I did & learned to blow her nose really well by about 18 months. She's 4 now & she's a better nose blower than my 7 year old!

Good Luck. The candle trick sounds great!

Due to our son's allergies and asthma, we have been having to use the nasal aspirator on him at least 2 times per day all 22 months he has been alive. Around 18 months he started mimicking me and I picked up on that cue and just kept working with him and finally he got the nose blowing thing. Now, he'll pick up a tissue and put it up to his nose and blow. What I do is just hold the tissue on his nose as I would my own and say "blow" and he knows what that means. I think it's just a training thing at the point in time...
Good luck!

My daughter used to get real bad runny noses too. I would just keep putting mentholatum on it and barely touch her nose with a kleenex. And when I would I would tell her to be a big girl. So she would stand really still while I wiped touched her nose with the kleenex. I don't use the aspirator because I just think it is gross. I didn't like having to hold her down to do it. Another thing that helps my daughter is vicks baby rub. Rub it on her chest and back and let her lay in her bed without a shirt on. This only works for mine at night. I try to keep that stuff on her all the time when she is stuffy. It really helps. Also Johnsons has a vapor bath. It has the same stuff in it that the other 2 have. And let her sit in there and play for a while. As for teaching her to blow her nose, your guess is as good as mine...

I'm having the same problem. Except my little girl is 2.5, she still doesn't get it and she blows raspberries into the kleenex. Last night she grabbed the tissue and wiped her nose with her arm all the way into her hair. Grrr. She's pretty good at wiping her nose normally though. I have tried everything to get her to blow her nose but she just blows with her mouth. I tell her "good job, now close your mouth and blow" she still blows with her mouth. lol. I remember my mom teaching me, I just wish I could remember how she finally did it. She has no clue either. :)

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