What to Give VERY Congested 2 1/2 Year Old?

Updated on May 14, 2010
B.C. asks from Arlington, TX
13 answers

My daughter was cranky at preschool today and I can see why! She can't breathe! She didn't nap at school today, so I have her down now for a late snooze. She keeps waking up b/c she can't breathe. She's 2 1/2 and weighs 34lbs. Any suggestions besides Saline and an asperator?

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So What Happened?

Thanks ladies! I couldn't get ahold of the doc after-hours, but the pharacist said to give her a 1/2 dose of children's sudafed. Hope it helps!

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answers from Santa Barbara on

I know I'm late, but my son also likes the "little noses" nose drops. They cut straight through the mucus. He also likes Mucinex.
Hope she feels better soon.

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answers from Houston on

Ask your pediatrician about the correct dosage of Mucinex for your daughter. I've had great success with avoiding antibiotics with my daughter because I am able to get everything moving. I also use plenty of steam, saline (Simply Saline aerosol is the best), and a cool mist humidifier. It doesn't work for every child, but it has helped us keep from developing a full blown sinus and ear infection.



answers from Los Angeles on

childrens benadryl 1/2 tsp. i use this on my 3 year old whose 33lbs since she was 14 months with a drs ok



answers from Minneapolis on

A few other suggestions would be to boost up his immunity by taking vitamins and probiotics yourself so he can get them through your breast milk. Florify probiotics are great supplements and VERY affordable, compared to others on the market.
Also, I am a BIG proponent of chiropractic adjustments for everyone, including infants. I have been seeing a chiropractor for years and totally believe in the benefits of chiropractic care. I got adjusted during both my pregnancies and my children have been adjusted since they were days old. We have given our chiropractor the title of our primary family physician and we see him before we go to the medical doctors (that’s how much we respect his expertise!). If you go this route, be sure that you see a pediatric specialty chiropractor for your son…there are chiropractors that will adjust infants and children without specialized training and it may not be a good experience.

Finally, when my girls get congested I rub them down with essential oils, R.C. and Raven. I order mine online through Young Living, but I’m sure you can find them at natural food stores. The oils usually help clear out their sinuses and get the gunk out. It doesn’t treat the infection, but keeps them more comfortable. I use the oils all over their hair, clothes, bed sheets, blankets (avoid the eyes) etc. and reapply 3-4 times a day until their symptoms clear.



answers from Dallas on

Well last week my almost 3 year old daughter had been suffering from a nasty cough and congestion for about a week. Her doctor prescribed allergy medicine and she was cleared up in a day! The allergens are in the air right now, it could honestly be that. Use a humidifier in her room, that usually helps too.



answers from Detroit on

If she felt badly enough to be "cranky" at preschool, I assume you called the dr and spoke with them and possibly took her in? The may have some recommendations for you.



answers from Atlanta on

HI B.,

Even a small amount of Sudafed can cause heart arythmia so please be careful. She's little so she can't express any discomfort or funny feelings. Elderberry syrup which you can get at the health store has no side effects, tastes good and actually builds the immune system so her little body will be able to fight off the symptoms.

My two cents!




answers from Dallas on

THICK coat of vicks on the bottom of her feet and cover w/ socks. You'll be AMAZED. We also give our son Triaminic (spelling?) congestion strips. It says 4 and over. We give him half when congestion is really bad, and it seems to help. No bad side effects.



answers from Minneapolis on

We use Vick's Baby Rub on the kids' chests when they're stuffy like that. It seems to help. Run a humidfier in her room, and prop up her head. We usually put a small pillow under their regular pillow to prop them up some. I don't think there's much in the way of medicine that can help, but when my kids are stuffy like that and having trouble sleeping, sometimes I'll give them some Tylenol or Motrin to take away any sore throat or headache pain they might be having.


answers from Spokane on

Hi B.,

It's my understanding that you cannot give children under 6 decongestant medication. That being said, I know that some doctors will allow it if the child is severely congested. I would talk to your pediatrician and see what is recommended. I know it's miserable for the little ones. My little guy just got over some really terrible crud. Hope your little girl is better soon.




answers from Dayton on

Over the counter Zyrtec and Claratin (both antihistamines) may help and have dosages for 2 year olds. Also, Motrin has a Motrin Cold that has Sudafed in it (a decongestant) that has a 2 year old dose also. Motrin Cold might be hard to find right now though since they just had a recall. Some people say not to give little ones cold medicine, but it has helped mine. Just make sure you stay within the guidelines to be safe.


answers from Columbus on

For my kids when they are congested, I rub Vix on their feet and put on socks. I know it sounds really......weird. It is. But, I swear it works! It has to do with the reflexology mind-set. I also put a little bit on their chest and put a humidifier in their room. Hey, it's worth a try, right?
If she keeps gettin stuffy and you aren't convinced it's colds, I'd have her into the doctor's office. I know in the South, allergies can be a nightmare!
Good luck!!



answers from Cincinnati on

Walmart sells an all-natural plug-in that is approved for tiny babies (Vicks & such are not), so I would look into that. I've used it for my son and myself occasionally, and it really helps. Also, make sure you have her somewhat propped up so that she can drain properly.