Bringing baby home also means bringing home lots of equipment and contraptions. There certainly is a gadget for every situation when it comes to baby and when you’re up at night for the first time with a congested little one you’ll be glad you’ve got some tools at hand to help baby feel better, like a NoseFrida. Never heard of a NoseFrida? Or do you have one in a drawer and not sure how to use it? Are you just plain scared to try it out? Totally understandable. Let’s clear the confusion…
Place the tube of the NoseFrida into the opening of your baby’s nose so that a seal is formed and then place the mouthpiece at the end of the hose into your mouth and suck lightly to pull out mucus from a stuffy nose. Using saline drops beforehand will help loosen the mucus and make it easier to suck out. Change the filter often for sanitation.
Still not exactly clear on this weird little device? Is it better than a trusty bulb syringe? Still feeling squeamish at the concept of sucking snot from your kiddo’s nose? There’s a reason a sense of humor is required for parenting, but a congested baby is no laughing matter in the middle of the night!
What is the NoseFrida?
The Swedish NoseFrida, created by the fridababy company, is a tool created specifically for clearing little noses of congestion. While it almost seems like a gag gift that might, well, make you gag, the design is hygienic, effective, and super simple to use!
The NoseFrida is a nasal aspirator, which is used to clear the nasal passages of fun stuff like boogers and snot. It comes with a few pieces you put together and then use to literally suck the snot from baby’s nose.
You’re probably more familiar with the traditional bulb syringe, which is a single-piece tool made of rubber or silicone also used for clearing airways of mucus or fluid.
Which one is best for clearing up congestion?
NoseFrida vs bulb syringe
The NoseFrida and bulb syringe both have their place in the nursery and have similar uses, but there are some advantages and disadvantages to each…
The bulb syringe is a single piece of rubber or silicone with a bulb at one end ending with a small opening at the other. The small opening is placed inside baby’s nostril to form a seal and the bulb is squeezed to create suction for the removal of mucus. You probably snuck one home in your hospital bag or added one to your baby registry.
The Pro’s of the Bulb Syringe:
- Has multiple purposes: it can be used to clear fluid from a baby’s mouth, mucus from the nasal passages, and even suck earwax from the ear
- Easy to clean
The Con’s of the Bulb Syringe:
- May not create a great seal with baby’s nostril thus not working well
- You may accidentally insert this too far into baby’s nose causing pain or injury
- Some product reviews show splitting at the seam, so this may be fragile
- Lots of different kinds, so finding one that works well can be difficult
The NoseFrida, while a bit goofy, is an aspirator with a plastic tip you place on the outside of baby’s nose, then once a seal is created you suck through a rubber hose to remove the mucus from the nasal passages.
Pro’s of the NoseFrida:
- Effective (from personal experience)
- Easy to clean
- Non-invasive (is not inserted into baby’s nose)
Con’s of the NoseFrida:
- More expensive than a bulb syringe
- Need to buy multiple replacement pieces (disposable foam filters)
Again, both of these items have a place in the nursery to be used for health and hygiene purposes and it’s probably wise to stick them both in the changing table for use when needed. But, for the simple purpose of clearing up a stuffy nose, my vote is for the NoseFrida. From personal experience, it allows more control, better suction, and you can actually see what you’re removing, which is helpful.
How to use the NoseFrida
When it comes to congestion and squirmy babies, you need something that works well and is easy to use. Time to break out the “snot sucker” and clear up the problem! Before you begin, it’s important to know what’s causing the stuffy nose: is the congestion from a viral or bacterial illness or allergies or some other problem?
If your child has a garden-variety virus, like the common cold, they’ll likely have clear mucus that may turn to yellow or green over the next few days. If baby’s mucus is thick and discolored to begin with and accompanied by a fever, it’s best to call your pediatrician to rule out anything more serious than a common illness. Most cases of congestion are caused by things like allergies, viruses, bacterial infections, dry air or poor air quality…Common symptoms of nasal congestion in babies can include:
- Thick mucus
- Discolored mucus
- Quick breathing, noisy breathing, or snoring
- Trouble feeding due to congestion
Once you know what’s causing the congestion you can work to clear the issue. The NoseFrida is easily assembled for use:
- Insert the small foam filter into the connector
- Connect the plastic nostril cover to the connector and attach the hose
Once assembled, you simply place the nose cover over baby’s nostril, so a seal is formed, and place the mouthpiece into your mouth and suck. You’ll start to see mucus fill the nose cover, but don’t worry, it won’t breach the foam filter.
For more help and details on how to use the NoseFrida, you can view their tutorial on YouTube below:
Some tips for easier use and maximum mucus removal:
- Use a saline nose drops to help loosen mucus before you use the NoseFrida
- Gently move the nose cover in a circular motion to help remove more mucus
- Change the filter after use to help maintain powerful suction and cleanliness
- If baby is especially squirmy, wrap baby in a towel or blanket to prevent flailing limbs or hands from getting in the way
- Don’t try to suction baby’s nose while they’re laying on their back-try propping them up to help with drainage
Other ways for helping to alleviate a baby’s stuffy nose include:
- Use a humidifier
- Use saline nose drops, which helps loosen mucus
- Elevate baby’s head by using a crib wedge at night (DO NOT use pillows or blankets in the crib to elevate baby’s head to reduce the risk of SIDS)
Don’t use menthol rubs or give baby cold medicine. If congestion doesn’t improve, worsens, or seems to be especially troublesome for baby, give your pediatrician a call for instructions and guidance.
How to use the NoseFrida with saline
Saline spray or drops (like these here) can be really helpful in loosening up mucus and congestion in little noses. Saline is essentially a saltwater solution that is safe for use in infants and babies. To use saline solution, be sure to follow package dosing instructions and these simple steps:
- Use clean hands when administering saline drops
- Hold baby in a reclined position. Remember, you can wrap baby in a towel if they’re especially squirmy to keep hands and arms out of the way or have another adult help
- Administer the drops according to package dosing instructions
- Try not to insert the tip of the bottle into baby’s nostril to reduce the spread of germs and bacteria
- Wait a few seconds for the drops to fully enter into the nose
Once the drops have had a few seconds to work, you can now use the NoseFrida to remove the loosened mucus from the nasal passage. Repeat in the other nostril.
Saline drops are very helpful for loosening tough mucus and helping to alleviate congestion in babies (and adults), so be sure to keep some stocked in your medicine cabinet.
How often do you change the NoseFrida filter?
To maintain cleanliness and reduce the spread of germs and bacteria, be sure to change the small, blue foam filter after each use. When you purchase your NoseFrida it’s a good idea to also add a pack or two of additional filters to your cart, so you have plenty on hand. They come in packs of 20. Using a clean filter also helps maintain good suction and reduces moisture buildup.
Potential dangers of NoseFrida
According to Fridababy, the NoseFrida is 100% safe when used properly for babies ages newborn and up. Because the tip of the nostril cover is not inserted into baby’s nose, but instead fitted snuggly on the outside of the nostril, you don’t have to worry about sticking something inside baby’s nose potentially causing pain or spreading germs.
Can NoseFrida be used on newborns?
Yes, the NoseFrida can be used on a babies aged newborn and up.
Can NoseFrida hurt baby?
If instructions are followed properly and it’s used for its intended purpose only, then, no, it is not harmful to baby. Be sure to store parts and extra pieces in a safe place where little hands cannot reach.
Is it bad to use NoseFrida too much?
Try to limit suctioning of your child’s nose to 4 or fewer times per day. The best time to clear a baby’s nose is before feeding and before sleep.
Is the NoseFrida sanitary?
Because nothing is entering the body and the filters help to catch germs, bacteria and mucus, the NoseFrida is sanitary as long as proper use and cleaning instructions are followed. To clean your NoseFrida properly:
- Remember to change the blue filters after each use to prevent the spread of germs and bacteria
- Clean the nostril cover with warm soap and water after each use
- Clean the thin tube with a few drops of rubbing alcohol
- Wash the mouthpiece with warm soap and water
- Once dry, reassemble with a fresh filter
Where can I buy a NoseFrida?
This product has gotten super popular and you can find one at most any local pharmacy, major grocery chains, and online.
As of the time of this writing, your cheapest option is on Amazon which you can find right here.
With those items, you’ll be all set!
Few things can stop us in our tracks like illness-especially when it comes to baby.
Add a NoseFrida to your registry, medicine cabinet, nursery inventory along with some saline drops and a bulb syringe to help combat congestion and help baby (and you) feel more comfortable when illness strikes!
Don’t forget to consult your pediatrician whenever baby is unwell to be sure medical care is not needed.