Stuffy, blocked or runny noses are unfortunately a feature in almost every household where young kids are around!
It can be boggling to look at the pharmacy shelves when you go in to choose something to help make your WonderBaba feel a little better so I hope to make your choice a little clearer and simpler in this article! I will discuss what different types of nasal sprays are suitable for kids, their benefits and from what age they can be used!
There’s one obvious starting point for this and it’s got to be the simple saline nasal spray. Saline products rinse the nasal canal and help to clear stubborn mucous. They also help to condition the airways which reduces potential inflammation and irritation. Like anything there are different types of saline and many different products so I’ll start by summing these up!
Saline nasal Sprays
There are different strengths of saline – 0.9% which is “normal saline”. This is an isotonic solution which means it contains the same level of salt as your bodies membranes and so does not irritate the nasal canals of young babies and acts as a great sinus rinse. There are also hypertonic solutions, these contains higher levels of salt than your body and are more effective at clearing the airways but due to their potential to cause a small amount of irritation they are unsuitable for small babies. Here is the info you need on the common saline products available in Irish Pharmacies.
- Calpol Saline nasal spray – This isotonic nasal spray is suitable from birth up to two years. The dose for 0-24 months is one spray into both nostrils as required, for children over two years of age or adults this can be increased to two sprays as required. The bottle needs to be discarded (return any unwanted meds to your local pharmacy rather than dumping in household waste) 12 weeks after opening so it is a good idea to write the date you opened it on the front of the pack so you remember! It costs €5.10. This works best in an upright position.
- Calpol Blocked Nose Spray – This is suitable from three years of age. This works best in an upright position
- Snufflebabe Saline Nasal Spray – Is suitable from birth as contains an isotonic dilution of saline. It has to be discarded after 8 weeks of opening which is shorter than the Calpol Saline Spray and it costs more at €7.35… That speaks for itself really. The dose for babies is one to two sprays into both nostrils before feeding and for older children this can be increase to 2-3 sprays as required. This works best in an upright position.
- Sterimar baby – This can be used from birth to three years of age. It doesn’t need to be dumped within a few weeks of opening so you can just go with the expiry date on the pack. It is great as it can be used at any angle as is more of an aerosol canister than a pump pack than the others. It can be used by pressing down for 2 seconds one to two times in each nostril up to a maximum of six times a day. Remember to use it whilst your baby is lying on their side or sitting up with their head tilted a little. Older children from two years of age can use it in an upright position if wanted.
- Sterimar Hayfever and Allergies – This is suitable from three years and up and contains an isotonic blend of saline. It can be used two to six times a day and is handy as also can be used at any angle.
- Sterimar Congestion Relief – This contains a hypertonic mix of saline which means it is more effective at shifting stubborn mucus. It also contains copper and manganese.
- The Neilmed Sinus Rinse for Kids – This is a little different as is not a spray but actually a bottle which comes with sachets which you add to water to make a nasal rinse. The contents of the bottle is then squeezed up the nostrils and the solution cleans the nasal cavities. I am a big fan (it’s gross but it works) of the adult version but I’ll be honest I haven’t managed to convince my kids to try out the child friendly version yet (which is suitable for children four years and up). I will though when the next bout of sniffles kicks in (a lot of these are gone since we started using the Salin Plus device) as once they get the hang of it they will get such great relief from it for any allergies, sinus problems or congestion from a cold or flu. It clears away dust, pollen, animal dander etc and soothes irritation. It’s particularly useful when a nasal drip is causing the issue. Your child has complete control over the pressure of the solution entering their nostrils, all they have to do is squeeze the soft bottle whilst leaning over a sink or leaning over in a shower if that makes things easier. So whilst I haven’t used the kids version that’s more to do with the fact that I haven’t needed to and my guinea pigs have their limits when it comes to unnecessary product testing!! I’ll update you once we have given it a shot!
Menthol Infused Nasal Sprays
Menthol is a great natural decongestant. It relieves the feeling of blocked irritated airways and can have a big impact on nasal congestion from colds, allergies and more. It is not suitable for young babies though and there are different age categories on the different products which I will explain here!
- A.Vogel Sinuforce – This is an isotonic nasal spray which also contains menthol, peppermint oil and eucalyptus oil to ease breathing, and chamomile oil which has a soothing effect on your nose. It is suitable from two years of age which is great for our WonderBabas! The dose is one to two sprays in each nostril three to five times daily.
- Otrivine Natural Nasal Spray with Eucalyptus – This is a hypertonic (at 2.2% sea salt concentration) nasal spray with Eucalyptus globulus, extract of Mentha arvensis. It is suitable from six years of age. The hypertonic nature of the spray will make it really effective for clearing mucus alongside the natural essential oils.
- Olbas Nasal Spray – This is also a hypertonic nasal spray which contains menthol, niauli and eucalyptus. It is similar to the Otrivine Natural one but comes in a little cheaper. It is also only suitable from six years of age.
Becodefence Allergy Spray Kids (previously Prevalin)
The grown up version of this product really saved me during pregnancy! I suffer from hay fever and without this spray I think I’d have lost my mind!! The Becodefence Allergy Kids spray is suitable for 6-12 year old and works within three minutes to line the nasal passageways to prevent allergen contact. This means you get relief from all of those symptoms brought on by exposure to allergens such as pollen, pet dander, dust etc. This can be used 2-3 times every day or at the start of an allergic reaction. During hay fever season it is a good idea to use it before your child goes outside to play or to school etc. To use it shake the bottle vigorously and then spray one to two times into both nostrils. Children and adults over 12 years old age can use the regular Becodefence allergy spray. There is also a Becodefence Allergy Plus spray which contains higher levels of oil to reduce sensitivity to allergens and that is also suitable from 12 years of age.
There is only one non natural decongestant spray which is suitable for use in children and even then it’s only for those over six years of age. It is Sudafed Nasal Spray, unlike it’s natural competitors it pharmacologically reduces congestion and inflammation in the airways but as it contains a medicine you should speak to a Pharmacist when buying it to make sure it’s suitable for your child. The dose is one spray into both nostrils three times daily and it gives up to 10 hours relief. For children this should only be used if other options have failed to provide relief.
Well I think that pretty much sums it up! I hope this article has made your choice a little clearer and that you can find the most suitable product for your WonderBaba! Don’t forget to read all the product literature before using any products on your kids.
All of the natural options are available to purchase by clicking right here!
As always if you have any questions at all please don’t hesitate to contact me by sending a private message to the WonderBaba facebook page or my website contact page or by calling me (Sheena) at Milltown totalhealth Pharmacy in Dublin 6 on 012600262.