|Wheezing (Other Than Asthma)|
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|When to Call Your Doctor|
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|Call Your Doctor Now (night or day) If|
|HOME CARE ADVICE FOR MILD WHEEZING (until you talk with your doctor)|
- Warm Fluids for Coughing Spasms: For any bouts of severe coughing, offer warm apple juice or lemonade if over 4 months old. (Reason: These can relax the airway and loosen up sticky secretions). Do not give any cough medicine.
- Nasal Washes To Open a Blocked Nose:
- Use saline nose drops or spray to loosen up the dried mucus. If not available, can use warm tap water.
- STEP 1: Instill 3 drops per nostril. (Age under 1 year, use 1 drop and do one side at a time)
- STEP 2: Blow (or suction) each nostril separately, while closing off the other nostril. Then do other side.
- STEP 3: Repeat nose drops and blowing (or suctioning) until the discharge is clear.
- Frequency: Do nasal washes whenever your child can't breathe through the nose.
- Saline nasal sprays can be purchased without a prescription.
- Saline nose drops can also be made: Add 1/2 teaspoon (2 ml) of table salt to 1 cup (8 ounces or 240 ml) of warm water.
- Reason for nose drops: suction or nose blowing alone can't remove dried or sticky mucus.
- Another option: use a warm shower to loosen mucus. Breathe in the moist air, then blow each nostril.
- For young children, can also use a wet cotton swab to remove sticky mucus.
- Importance for a young infant: can't nurse or drink from a bottle unless the nose is open.
- Humidifier: If the air is dry in your home, run a humidifier.
- Smaller Feedings: Encourage small, frequent feedings whenever your child has the energy to drink. (Reason: Child with wheezing doesn't have enough energy for long feedings).
- Avoid Tobacco Smoke: Active or passive smoking makes coughs much worse.
- Contagiousness: Your child can return to child care after the wheezing and fever are gone.
- Call Your Doctor If:
- Breathing becomes difficult, tight or loud
- Wheezing becomes worse
And remember, contact your doctor if your child develops any of the "Call Your Doctor" symptoms.
Disclaimer: This information is not intended be a substitute for professional medical advice. It is provided for educational purposes only. You assume full responsibility for how you choose to use this information.
Author and Senior Reviewer: Barton D. Schmitt, M.D.
Last Reviewed: 9/15/2011
Last Revised: 5/25/2011
Content Set: Pediatric HouseCalls Symptom Checker
Copyright 1994-2012 Barton D. Schmitt, M.D.