Using a Humidifier for Baby
“Now that cold weather is upon us we have begun turning on our heater at home. The problem is that now the air in the house has become extremely dry. My 7-month-old son suffers from eczema and on top of that his nasal passages and the skin around his nostrils are dry. Besides the creams and saline drops that I currently use to combat this problem, do you recommend using a humidifier for baby in his room?”
Dr. Jim’s Advice:
The air in the house can get very dry when the heater is running. The air passages need to stay moist in order to stay healthy. I highly recommend using some sort of vaporizer or humidifier for baby throughout the night. You don’t have to buy an expensive humidifier to add more moisture to the air. There are many inexpensive, simple ways to create humidity around you.
DIY Humidifier Solutions
When we travel, we will run the hot shower in the hotel room for a few minutes to get a little steam in the air. Also, leaving some water in the bathtub can provide a little extra moisture in the air. In the morning, be sure to open windows and let the rooms air out for a while, otherwise mold can start growing on the walls. (I learned this the hard way…)
At home, allow a pan of water to simmer on the back burner of your stove. Just keep a careful watch on it to ensure it doesn’t boil dry!
Another easy way to add moisture to the air is through houseplants. Moisture evaporate through the leaves causing the plant to act as a natural humidifier. Be sure to keep the plant well watered.
Hang damp bath towels to dry on a clothes rack near registers or radiators. As the hot air flows over the moist fabric it absorbs the moisture and carries it throughout the house.
Humidifier vs Vaporizer?
Hot Vs cold? Doesn’t really matter. There are some very nice units on the market that can give both warm or cold mist; these are great. I have usually just used the cheap $15 units that give a warm steam, and they have been fine. You need to be careful with these because the steam can burn.