Humidifier Vs. Vaporizer

Updated on December 24, 2008
G.D. asks from Keller, TX
14 answers

My 2-yr old daughter is having a difficult time with her nose and sinuses lately so I looked at humidifiers and did not realize there were so many variables! Any suggestions are greatly appreciated.

2 moms found this helpful

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J.B.

answers from Dallas on

I prefer a steam vaporizer. I kept one in my daughters room and ran it any time she was asleep, summer or winter. It was up high where she could not put her hand in front of the steam vapor and I unplugged it the moment she awoke. My problem with the humidifiers is that they must be carefully cleaned to avoid a different set of health issues because of the lack of heat. We tried the cool mist humidifier for a short time when she was older...just for a cold and did not feel it did the job as well as the vaporizer. Plus, the vaporizer allows you to add mentholatum in different forms and carries it through the room.

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D.C.

answers from Dallas on

My 5 year old had the same problem since birth and our doctor said no to either one of those because of the bacteria that can grow in there and it was too dangerous for him. That doesn't mean you can't he was extremely sensitive to everything and suffers from allergies & asthma; but I'll tell you what we did. We used saline several times a day and steamy bathrooms before bed. He's now old enough we can actually stick him in the shower and let him clean out his sinuses. We recently started with ENTSOL and have found it to be a miracle. Its very expensive, but the relief he gets because it blows up into his upper sinuses is amazing.

Good luck! There is nothing worse to a mother than watching her child struggle to breathe.

1 mom found this helpful
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M.F.

answers from Dallas on

We have cool mist humidifiers in the kids' rooms. The doc recommended the cool mist kind because the warm ones are more likely to get moldy. Main thing you want to look at is the size -- is it appropriate for the size room you want to use it in? and the design -- will it be easy to clean? easy to fill? (we had some cheap ones once that were a pain to open and fill so we tossed them out and got our current ones). If there's a demo open in the store, take it apart and mess with it. And check how easily you can buy/replace filters. You may not want to get something that is really unique and is a lot of trouble (and money) to maintain. I forget the brand of the ones we have now, but we like them a lot. It may be Reli-On. It looks like an aquarium. It may also be "ultrasonic." Not sure what that means, but it's very effective!

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L.Z.

answers from Dallas on

Although this isn't quite what you're asking, I still want to share. I use a cool mist humidifier and it leaves a really bad white dust on EVERYTHING in my daughters room. I finally learned (ok, I read the manual finally) that in areas where there is hard water, this will happen. So, I'm currently trying filtered water to see if I have the same problem. I do, but it is much less severe. I will either go to distilled water (which is the manufacturer's reccomendation) or I will buy a air purifier. But then I have to wonder if the air purifier will suck up all the humidity as well as the dust particles. I guess the bottom line is this: if you get a humidifier and it leaves a bad chalky white dust on everything, it's just the water you're using and not the humidifier. A different kind of water will help. Hope this is helpful.

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M.R.

answers from Amarillo on

The hot mist humidifiers work wonders. When my son is sick I turn his on in the room. Don't put it to close to them but close enough where they can get use of it. It will help her breath alot better. Also when I was little my parents used to make me a tent with a sheet & put the humidifier in it with me. I never figured out why but it always made me feel better. Hope this works!!

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G.F.

answers from Dallas on

Well, this is old school, but my sis, brother and I turned out great! My mom put VICKS on our chest under our pj's when we had a cold or congestion. She also put VICKS in the little area outside of the vaporizer, so when the steam blew out, the heat of the vapor melted the VICKS and VICKS goes in the room to help the kids breathe...Sometimes my mom would put vicks on us, then wrap a towel around our neck with a safety pin (still haven't figured out the reasoning behind the towel, maybe not get it on our pjs?)...I'm 50+ and I did that with my girls now 21 & 25 :)...

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J.S.

answers from Dallas on

We were told by our pedi. to use a cool mist humidifier. The warm mist ones tend to get moldy and then spews that into the room. So, after some investigating, we ended up with the Graco cool mist humidifier: http://www.toysrus.com/product/index.jsp?productId=2909897
It has worked for us great over the last several months since we started using it. It is easy to take care of, my husband rinses out the tank and filter every day or every other. I suggest reading the reviews online because some cool mist will put out a white powder into the room that will get on furniture, etc. Anyhow, the humidifier helped out our boys, it cleared up our boys' sinuses in a couple of days and they haven't had a problem since. Hope this helps. Good luck.

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B.P.

answers from Abilene on

Use a cool mist humidifer and be sure to get one that is "dust free" (or something like that). The can put off a white powder otherwise that I guess is from the minerals, etc in the water.

We bought a $25 one from Wally and it is great and has lasted for over 5 years!

Oh -- and be sure to clean it every other day or so (rinse the filter and water tank). It can grow some pretty funky stuff!

Best of Luck and God Bless!

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T.M.

answers from Dallas on

Our Doctor told us that at a young age they don't want to give infants any cold meds. So he told us to do a saline mist spray in the nose to keep the nasal passage moist and it will also flush out any germs that may be trapped in there. He also stated Vicks Vapor Cream on the chest and back to help with congestion as well and a Cool mist vaporizer to moisten the air mainly if you use or heat the house over 75. Use the saline mist regularly to ensure that the nose stays moist and doesn't dry out the sinus.

T.

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K.S.

answers from Dallas on

For regular use my vote is for cool mist. However, ALL humidifiers, not just the warm, collect bacteria and germs and spray them into the air if you are not very careful about cleaning them, changing the filters, etc.

For just an occassional stuffy nose, illness, etc... the warm ones work great.

In our case, the humidifier didn't help a bit. Saline nose spray worked better.

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A.J.

answers from Dallas on

I have always preferred the good old fashioned Vicks Vaperizor and steam showers...I also like the plug in stuff that gives off a menthol scent. that seems to help my kids and me. :o)

A. J

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C.C.

answers from Dallas on

My 2 year old is going through the same problem. My own personal preference is a warm mist humidifier. I've tried the cool mist ones for all of my children and just don't think they work that great. And the warm mist helps keep my daughter's room warmer, which is a plus at this time of year. Just be sure to keep it out of her reach, because the warm steam can scald her.

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S.H.

answers from Dallas on

Everytime I have ever had to use one my pediatrician says to use a humidifier. I own both, but I don't think the vaporizer has been out of the box in over a year. Hope that helps!

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S.S.

answers from Wichita Falls on

I use a Vicks Vaposteamer with the Vicks in the water and Vaporub on their feet, under socks.

My pediatrician recommends a Cool mist humidifier because it holds particles lower to the ground with less risk of a child being burned - but you have to be very diligent about cleaning them or they grow fungus and bacteria and spread them in the air.

S.

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