Nasal washes with serum are very helpful if applied correctly, but they can be bothersome, ineffective, and occasionally harmful. Here are the most common mistakes we make when performing a nasal wash on the child.
1- Perform nasal washes when there is no nasal congestion. Older children will complain if they are "too stuck." If they are not, why are we going to do a nasal wash? In the same way, younger children should only be subjected to a nasal wash if they have great discomfort, preferably before feeding, so that they can eat without difficulties.
2- Nasal washes do not have a preventive purpose. There are parents who do nasal washes to their children because they think that this way they will not get a cold. That's not true.
3- Putting several drops of serum in the nose is useless. Nasal washes are performed with a good jet of serum, or taking one or more inhalations of powdered serum, and not just with two or three drops.
4- If the child is uncomfortable, it is better to leave it. Older children have other strategies for getting rid of snot (for example: vigorous blowing, good hydration, etc.). Therefore, if every time you wash your child's nose, this is a real headache, it is better that you resort to other strategies.
5- Do frequent nasal washes to children with repeated nosebleeds. If your child bleeds easily, it is better not to do nasal washes, because the cure will be worse than the disease.
6- Do nasal washes to children with clotting problems. These problems will make it easier for the child to bleed from the nose, so it is better to avoid nasal washes. If they have to be done, it is best to be extremely cautious.
7- Combine nasal washes with snot suction in babies under 6 months. Very young infants have a very short Eustachian tube, so aspiration of mucus has a pulling effect on the eardrum, which in turn leads to irritability due to earache.
8- Do nasal washes to an infant, with the baby sitting up. The best thing is that it is lying down, because this makes it easier to hold the head. A well-supported head prevents the child from turning it sharply, which is why we can harm their nostrils. Furthermore, possible aspiration of serum will be avoided.
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