Fraternal Twins: Characteristics and Fascinating Facts

Fraternal Twins: Characteristics and Fascinating Facts


The news of becoming a parent indeed brings a lot of joy, as the arrival of a baby is a delightful event. Parents shop for cute clothes and fancy cribs while relatives are off to the gift shops to get their hands on the latest toys for newborns. 


But what if you get to know, you are up for double trouble?


The news of having a twin pregnancy is equally joyous but undoubtedly brings the hassle of having to manage two babies with it. The only thing that makes it easier is that, unlike identical twins, fraternal twins are non-identical, and the parents don’t have to search for ways to differentiate between their twins. 


However, due to non-identical frames of physical traits, the parents themselves would have to spend a lifetime explaining how the different-looking siblings in almost all aspects are twins for real.


Let’s have a look at some of the common facts and characteristics that fraternal twins possess.


How Are Fraternal Twins Formed Embryonically?


In rare cases, two unfertilised eggs can be released in the ovaries simultaneously. If these two different eggs get fertilised by two different sperms simultaneously upon intercourse, both fertilised eggs individually implant in the uterus and grow.


This means that the fraternal twins only share about 50 percent DNA, unlike the monozygotic or identical twins, who share an absolute 100 percent. Hence, fraternal twins are not genetically or physically identical.


While the reason for fraternal twin birth is not precisely known, most often, it runs in the family, and a mother is likely to have fraternal twins if she or someone in the family has had a similar pregnancy before.


Unpopular Facts About Fraternal Twins

 

picture of twins holding each other's hand

 

While we have scratched the surface of fraternal twin pregnancy, let’s dive into some of the lesser-known facts about double newborns.


1. They Are The More Common Type Of Twins


When we hear the word twins, most people would imagine two identical humans with identical physical traits. However, that’s not usually the case. As per statistics, a twin pregnancy is more likely to result in fraternal twins. Around 75 percent of all twin pregnancies are fraternal twins.


2. The Fraternal Twins Can Have Different Sexes, Unlike The Identical Twins


A baby’s gender is determined by the chromosome brought by the father’s sperm to the egg for fertilisation. Since two separate sperms fertilise the eggs for fraternal twins, the gender of the babies can be distinct as well. It means that either baby can be a boy or a girl, unlike identical twins who tend to have the same gender.


This usually serves as a fun factor when someone asks the siblings their dates of birth, and the revelation that they are twins is made on people.


3. Fraternal Twins May Have Two Different Fathers


A phenomenon usually seen in movies is pretty accurate in real life too.


Commonly known as superfecundation or bi-paternal twins, fraternal twins may have two fathers and are generally seen in women with hyper-sexual activity.


The woman’s cycle will be interrupted by the release of eggs multiple times (a phenomenon known as hyper-ovulation), and she will be having sex with more than one partner. Hence, leading to the two different eggs being fertilised by sperms coming from two different fathers, making bi-paternal twins a possibility.


4. They May Not Be Born On The Same Day


Yes, you read it right!


Fraternal twins are not necessarily supposed to be born on the same day. They can have a week or even a month gap in their ages. This happens when a woman releases one egg during her cycle, and it gets fertilised, then her cycle gets interrupted.


Now when she experiences another cycle, she releases another egg while already being pregnant. The second egg gets fertilised upon having sex now, as per a phenomenon known as superfetation. 


This leads to the birth of fraternal twins with a week or even a month’s difference. This phenomenon can take place up to 24 days after the first egg’s release.


5. They Have Separate Supporting Structures


When looked upon in-utero, fraternal twins have completely separate in-utero growth and supporting structures. In addition, since fertilisation and implantation are different, twins develop separate amniotic sacs, placentas, and other in-utero supporting structures.


6. They Might Be Polar Opposites


Fraternal twins only share 50 percent of the genetic makeup. This leads to them being sometimes polar opposites in their characteristics and preferences.


While this individuality will undoubtedly be adorable, simultaneously mastering the routines and preferences of two different babies will definitely be a nightmare for the parents. This is because you will be looking after two completely different individuals who are not close to each other, unlike identical twins who have a stronger bond. After all, they share 100 percent of their DNA.


7. Fun Part: They Are Difficult To Differentiate


Fraternal twins tend to look dissimilar enough not to be labelled twins by the general public, who would often be found taken aback by shock when they learn the pair of siblings are twins.


However, often fraternal twins can look identical to a high level as well. For example, they may look like a pair of siblings with 100 percent shared genetic makeup. On the contrary, sometimes, identical twins may not resemble each other so much because of the environmental factors that may lead to slight physical differences. 


The only sure-fire way to confirm if a pair of siblings are twins is the DNA zygosity genetic test. Besides demonstrating the twin status, this test is also responsible and essential for determining the baby’s health.


Conclusion


Twins may be double trouble for the parents, but they are a joyful bliss as they fill the home with positive vibes and laughter. Their dissimilarities make them unique but quite similar at the same time as well.

 

Infant Gas: Quick Tips to Help Relieve Baby Gas

Infant Gas: Quick Tips to Help Relieve Baby Gas


Have you been struggling with your baby’s behaviour lately? Do you think your baby is often grumpy and moody? Though such behaviours can happen occasionally, a baby constantly feeling uncomfortable will make you worry and keep you on your toes all the time.


But what if your baby is like this because of gas issues? Even though it is a bit challenging to dig the exact point of contention in babies in the early months, some signs can help you figure out the specific problem for sure.


As for this article, we’ll be going through some tips and tricks that can aid you in giving your baby the relief that he should have.


Causes That Lead To Gas In Babies


Before we jump into the tips to help a gassy baby, it is essential to know that such problems are common in occurrence. Since the baby’s digestive system has just begun developing, having gas issues is 100% normal.


The passing of gas is a normal human phenomenon; hence a gassy baby isn’t much worry. However, when the gas in the body is unable to pass, it gets collected in the digestive tract, thus causing bloating and irritation in a baby.


Anyhow, it will probably be more fitting if we go through the signs first. That can let you know whether your baby has a gas problem or not.

Some typical signs of babies with gas problems are:


  • Crying for elongated periods.
  • Sulky and sad mood.
  • Improper sleep and food cycle.
  • Discomfort overall.
  • Bloating and Farting.

The signs mentioned above can happen due to various reasons. For example, one of the reasons why babies produce more gas than adults is because of constipation. Other reasons could be the incorrect way you are making your baby burp, the baby’s position, and the sucking of your baby through a pacifier.


Quick Tips To Help A Gassy Baby


Once you have made sure that your baby indeed has gas issues, the tips mentioned are going to prove quite helpful.


You’ll realise that most of these tips are common, and it could be that you indeed do them. But from now on, it will be better if you pay more attention to these and carry them out properly.

 

gassy baby

 

1. Check The Position Of Your Baby


During feeding sessions, ensure that your baby’s head is kept higher than its stomach. That way, the milk shall go down your baby’s stomach and the air upwards.


You can also use a pillow while feeding. Please don’t make your baby lie down as that will cause more gas. If your baby is bottle-fed, go for bottles with nipples that help regulate air and liquid.


For those who breastfeed their babies, you must consult your doctor about your diet, as peculiar foods might be causing that painful gas in your baby. Some food items that can cause gas are caffeine, dairy products, vegetables such as broccoli, etc.


2. Make Your Baby Burp


One of the easiest ways to alleviate trapped gas or relief gas, in general, is to make your baby burp during the feeding session and after it.


You can also gently pat your baby on the back after the feeding, or you can make them lie down on their backs, too, if they don’t burp right away. If your little one lets go of the nipple only a few minutes after you start feeding, then that could be a sign to make your baby burp instead of thinking it’s full.


Frequent massages can also be effective for babies to easily digest their food and have a happy and energetic mood overall.


3. Make Your Baby Ride A Bicycle


No, this does not mean that you get your baby to bicycle and neither does it require any hardcore effort from your side.


All you have to do is lie your little one down on its back and slowly move the legs back and forth in a bicycle motion. This can aid in the release and push that gas out. You can also push your baby’s knees to his tummy and hold it for a good 10 seconds.


Repeat these minor but productive exercises to relieve gas quickly!


4. Do The “I Love You” Massage


Most of you must be thinking that we are making this up, but no. Usually, the nurses teach the technique of the “I love you” massage to new moms before leaving the hospital.


The steps included are as stated. Lie down your baby on its back and start rubbing the tummy in circular motions with a gentle hand. Start stroking the words “I”, “L”, and “Y” with three fingers on the baby’s belly. Next, spell the words around the entire belly smoothly. 


By doing this, you are helping the gas in your baby’s digestive tract to pass out without any discomfort – Isn’t that a fun yet easy exercise to do with your baby?


5. Don’t Skip Feeding Sessions


If there is one thing that you should never do, you must never skip your baby’s feeding time or wait for a specific time to roll around.


Purposefully waiting for a temper tantrum or meltdowns is like adding fuel to the fire. Babies, especially newborns, are hungry all the time. Moreover, while crying, they are simply chugging air down their throats. This can highly contribute to that terrifying gas episode.  


Since crying is unpredictable primarily in infants, it is better to keep them well fed to avoid unexpected waterworks.


6. Experiment And Encourage Baby Drops


Though it might not be ideal for dabbling around and experimenting, trying formulas that tone down that gassiness can be a good thing.


Apart from testing new formulas for your baby, you can also try baby drops. They are not helpful for all babies, but they don’t cause harm either.


Note: Talk to your doctor before you try or give anything to your baby. The last thing you would want for your baby is to be in pain and discomfort.

 

Conclusion


Here are all the tips and techniques that you’ll need to help a gassy baby. Remember, newborns are pretty sensitive, and almost anything can trigger them. Therefore you must be aware of the signs, causes and remedies related to gassy babies. Not only will that keep you prepared but also you’ll be able to solve the issue yourself!

 

Low Milk Supply: Signs, Causes, and Things To Know

Low Milk Supply: Signs, Causes, and Things To Know


There’s one problem most of the new moms face, low milk supply. It could be a false alarm, but sometimes it isn’t one. There are times when your milk supply could be running low, that’ll reflect in your baby’s behaviour.


Is your baby crying too much these days, or seems agitated? If everything else checks in OK, you should probably pay attention to your milk supply. There are numerous reasons behind the low milk supply, which we will discuss in this post.


So let’s get into it!


Signs: Knowing If The Milk-Supply Is Low Or Not


It’s vital to determine if you’re producing less milk or not. Not only is it harmful to the baby, but it’s not suitable for the mother either. Therefore, it’s essential to assess this problem as soon as possible and seek professional care.


Here are the three signs that’ll help you in knowing if the milk supply is low or not:


1. Poor Weight Gain


Weight loss after birth is quite normal. Newborn babies lose about 5 to 7% of their weight in the early postpartum period. But afterwards, they regain at least 4-7 ounces per week as well. If this is not happening, and your baby is not gaining the usual weight, it’s time you seek professional help.


2. Dehydration


Another alarming sign that you will come across is dehydration. If your baby is not producing tears while crying, hasn’t passed urine in several hours, looks lethargic, and has a soft sinking spot on his head – your baby is dehydrated. Moreover, he is probably dehydrated because he has been experiencing milk shortages.


3. Insufficient Wet or Dirty Nappies


Insufficient wet nappies are the last sign that may help you figure out if your milk supply is low or not. Babies should be damp, smelly, and should have a record of 6-8 wholly soaked nappies in 24 hours. Anything, otherwise, would probably indicate a problem that needs medical attention.


Reasons Behind Low Breast Milk Supply

 

how to increase breast milk supply fast

 

Now that you’re familiar with the signs of low breast milk supply, it’s time to learn about the reasons behind this issue. In addition, learning about the problem can help you reverse it with healthy habits and lifestyles.


1. Mom’s Poor Diet


Since you’re the mom, it’s apparent that you’re in charge of producing breast milk. Consuming unhealthy foods or having an unbalanced diet can directly affect the supply. Therefore, it is vital to eat healthy in order to keep producing milk during breastfeeding.


Adding garlic, chickpeas, almonds, fenugreek, dark leafy vegetables, and oatmeal can help boost the production.


2. Mom Under Stress


Taking care of a baby is not an easy task. There are a million things to manage that usually contribute to stress and anxiety. This leads to the production of cortisol and adrenaline. Both inhibit the release of oxytocin which is responsible for milk “let-down.” Therefore, cutting down stress and loving the process can help increase the milk supply.


3. Incomplete Latch


An incomplete or poor latch can also cause a significant decrease in breast milk production and supply. It is so because if the baby doesn’t latch properly, the breasts don’t empty as they should. Instead, it’s the emptying of breasts that stimulates the production of more milk. Thus, to ensure that your breasts don’t run out of milk, ensure that your baby is positioned ideally.


3. Cutting Down Feeding Time


It’s essential to give adequate time for your breasts to empty. If you don’t, your milk supply will inevitably suffer. Try breastfeeding your baby for at least 8-10 minutes on both sides to avoid this problem once and for all.


4. Unhealthy Lifestyle


Everything a mother does affects her baby. For example, if she is smoking, skipping meals, or not massaging her breasts from time to time – it will cause a drastic decrease in the breast milk supply. To avoid these issues, make sure that the moms take care of themselves and pursue a healthy lifestyle.  


5. Alternating/Supplementing with Formula Milk


The arch-enemy of your breast milk’s supply is formula milk.


So if, in the very beginning too, you start to alternate breast milk with formula milk, there will surely be a decrease in your breast milk production. That is because your breasts work on supply and demand – the more you breastfeed, the more milk they produce.


So, alternating with formula milk can decrease that supply and demand process, creating trouble for your baby.


6. Taking Hormonal Oral Contraceptives


While contraceptives don’t affect the milk supply of many others, some may experience this issue. It’s due to estrogen in the pills or patches that causes the decrease in breast milk, especially if taken before your baby is four months old.


7. Scheduling Feedings


Scheduling when to feed your baby and when to not can also disrupt the demand and supply chain. Once disturbed, this can lead to low breast milk production. So, to make sure that you don’t go through this, please don’t schedule feedings. 


Feed your baby whenever they are hungry, and you’re good to go.


8. Skipping Feeds at Night


It’s natural to want to skip breastfeeding at night. But it’s essential to not give in to the desire and feed your baby if he wakes up at night. 


The interval during the night can be quite a lengthy one. In addition, it can potentially trick your body into believing that it’s OK not to produce milk anymore. This can eventually lead to a decreased breast milk supply, and in turn, affect your baby’s health.


Improve Your Breast Milk Supply


Having a decreased breast milk supply is not something unfixable. Here are some of the easiest ways to improve your milk supply:


  • Use a breast pump to maintain good flow
  • Massage your breasts from time to time
  • Switch between both the breasts
  • Aim for the perfect position of your baby so that he latches properly

Summing Up


It’s incredibly essential to look out for fake signs as well. Sometimes, it might feel like your milk supply is low, but it isn’t. Therefore, it’s always better to consult with a healthcare professional. In addition, try to improve your lifestyle, improve breastfeeding positions, and never schedule feeding periods for the baby.

 

12 Healthy Foods To Eat Right After Labour

12 Healthy Foods To Eat Right After Labour

 

Self-care, right after labour, wouldn’t be making it to your to-do list for at least a month. But the truth is that the initial months are equally crucial for the mother as they are for the baby. 


In the first two to three months, consuming alcohol or incorporating junk food into your diet isn’t a good decision. So ignoring yourself and not prioritising yourself can bear unwanted consequences. Therefore, it’s essential to take care of your health and well-being as well.


To help you begin this process, here are the 12 healthy foods to eat right after your labour. They will provide you with the nutrients required to have a healthy postpartum period.


Foods To Eat After Labour


Eating proper, healthy, and nutritious meals will help you stay active and heal the body faster. Not only that, but it will also prove to be beneficial for your baby.


Following are some of the food items that you must include in your diet:


1. Oatmeal


If you thought that giving birth was scary, then you might have to wait for that postpartum poop. Unfortunately, due to the extreme wear and tear of pushing a baby out of your uterus, it is most likely that going to the washroom will be a significant problem.


Moreover, you can expect episodes of constipation after birth due to pregnancy hormones. So in order to help things move smoothly down there, you must include foods that are rich in fibre in your diet.


Adding oatmeal to your diet will be perfect as it is a bland carb that eases constipation. You can top the oatmeal bowl off with some fruits such as berries, strawberries, and more.


2. Citrus Fruits


Citrus fruits, such as oranges, are a must-have along with an iron-rich meal. In addition, they are a great way to boost your energy levels.


Oranges and other citrus fruits are excellent breastfeeding food items since they are full of Vitamin C. Therefore, new moms need them way more than pregnant women. It also improves your immune system that will keep the baby complete with antioxidants.


You’ll even see your postpartum wound healing pretty quickly once oranges become one of your daily intakes.


3. Green Leafy Vegetables


Dark, leafy greens such as spinach, leaf lettuce, and broccoli contain numerous vitamins like Vitamin A, Vitamin C, Vitamin K, calcium, and iron. Such green veggies are also low in calories and taste yummy – an actual win-win situation!


4. Beef


After birth, it is completely normal to lose some blood. And because of that, you may experience iron deficiency and anaemia.


Both of these can interfere with your recovery. Hence you’ll need a food item that can swiftly help you compensate for the loss. That’s where beef comes to play.


Eating beef or including small amounts of it will help you regain your sodium balance and keep your blood levels in check.


5. Canned Beans


Canned beans are a great source of proteins, and you can eat them with any of your meals! The high fibre and proteins present in beans can aid you in keeping your digestive system running. It’s necessary, especially after vaginal or C-section birth.


6. Eggs


Having eggs for breakfast is a great way to start your day with a burst of energy. You’ll even find your muscles soothed that you have been in an ordeal due to the entire birth process.  


Moreover, the fun part about eggs is that you can have them in any way you like. You can either have it scrambled, hard or soft boiled, fried or in the shape of an omelette.


7. Nuts


Don’t you wish to have a good supply of milk for the sake of your little one? For that, you must take these healthy fats.


Nuts such as almonds, walnuts, and hazelnuts soaked in water fortify their goodness and prove to be a good snack that you can have from time to time. What’s more, these will aid in the proper development of your little one’s brain and organs. That is why you can’t leave out this food item at all!


8. Dates


Dates are the sweet little candies that almost everyone loves. These simple sugars are full of many vitamins. You can pack them with ease and eat anytime.


That said, dates are also said to increase your milk supply and contain dietary fibre and potassium, making the average blood loss and haemorrhaging minor and controlled.


9. Apples


Apples are the perfect mix of proteins, vitamins, and healthy fats. Moreover, they can help you get rid of that bad breath if you cannot walk up to the sink. This fruit is an instant energiser and can keep the lethargic feeling at bay!


10. Chicken Noodle Soup


Since sweating is also a regular post-birth activity, you’ll need something to keep you hydrated constantly. So if you aren’t a big fan of water, then chicken noodle soup might cut out for you!


The warm, salty broth is going to excite your taste buds and give you something new to have instead of plain water. The soft noodles are going to be easy to chew. Overall, chicken noodle soup will give life to your sour taste.


11. Seafood


If you are going to eat seafood, then you might have to check for fish advisories. However, eating fish like tuna and salmon is DHA and EPA’s richest source on the bright side. They highly contribute to the vision and brain development of the baby.


12. Sweet Potatoes


Eating just one sweet potato can meet the daily recommendation of Vitamin A and is essential for breastfeeding moms. Since sweet potatoes are root veggies, the mineral and vitamin content is much higher and better than the vegetables. 


So get your hands on sweet potatoes and spice it up with a bit of red and black pepper!


Conclusion


Looking after yourself and taking care of your diet equals a healthy baby. So if you want to ensure that your baby is healthy, has a robust immune system along with typical development – then, pay attention to yourself!

 

 

White Bumps In Baby’s Mouth: What Do They Indicate?

White Bumps In Baby’s Mouth: What Do They Indicate?


Let’s say that you’ve noticed these white-coloured bumps on your baby’s gums or their mouth’s roof. You’ll probably think of the first thing that comes to your mind, which is: “Are my baby’s teeth showing up earlier than usual?” Well, the answer is no.


While there are a few exceptions, most babies start teething around six months. If you notice some nodules/bumps/cysts/pimples before six months, they are not teeth. These are cysts of oral cavities. 


Let’s take a look at them and understand the process behind their appearance, when they disappear, and what you can do to treat them.


Types Of White Bumps In Baby’s Mouth


These whitish bumps in your baby’s mouth are not harmful and are usually of five types – with Epstein pearls being the most common of them.


Here are the following cysts that you should know about:


1. Epstein Pearls


Usually, 60-85% of oral cysts are Epstein pearls. It’s a kind of gingival cyst that occurs in babies born to mothers above 40 years, babies who are heavier and born after the due date. However, they do not interfere with the usual teething process of your child.


Among the different racial groups, Japanese newborns are most commonly affected by Epstein pearls, followed by Caucasians and African-Americans.


Causes


Certain factors do influence the development of Epstein pearls, but there are no specific causes.


The appearance of Epstein pearls is primarily a developmental defect in newborns. During the 10th–11th week, when the nasal process and palate are about to assume their full form, multiple layers of the skin can sometimes get trapped between them.


As the mouth continues to develop, keratin (the protein found in your hair and nails) starts to deposit in the trapped layers of the skin. This leads to the formation of keratin-filled cysts known as Epstein pearls.


Symptoms


Usually, Epstein pearls form in groups of 2-6 and appear as whitish-yellowish bumps. You can confuse them with teeth, but Epstein pearls don’t cause any discomfort or irritation, unlike teething.


You’ll most likely notice these during feeding or when your baby yawns. They are benign, asymptomatic cysts that do not interfere with feeding or teething.


Diagnosis and Treatment


There are no particular tests to diagnose Epstein pearls. Instead, they are diagnosed clinically upon examination, and no further investigations are required.


As far as the treatment is concerned – there’s no treatment plan for Epstein pearls. They will usually regress or rupture within a few weeks to three months. Once they do, all the built-up keratin is released and eventually flushed out of your baby’s system.  


Friction from feeding or sucking on a pacifier can also contribute to the rupture of Epstein pearls.


2. Bohn’s Nodules


Bohn’s Nodules can be confused with Epstein pearls, but they are not the same. Like Epstein bumps, these are keratin-filled cysts as well. However, they are the remnants of salivary glands.


These types of cysts are located on the lingual and buccal aspects of alveolar ridges. On the other hand, Bohn’s nodules are true epithelial cysts, with mucous glands of the mouth being their favourite site for making an appearance.


3. Congenital Epulis


Congenital epulis is a rare condition characterised by a reddish mass ranging from a few millimetres to a few centimetres. It is a benign tumour that can cause respiratory or feeding problems.


It’s soft, located on the gingival margin, and attaches to the tissue via a stem-like appendage. The only treatment option for congenital epulis is surgical resection making it unlikely to make a comeback.


4. Dental Lamina Cysts


Dental lamina cysts are unstable, solitary lesions that are incredibly transparent. They are more significant in size than Epstein pearls and often go away after a short period.


Their site of development is the crest of the alveolar mucosa in the oral cavities of babies.


5. Natal Teeth


As the name suggests, natal teeth are teeth that are present when the baby is born. They usually represent some developmental anomaly and require immediate medical attention.


Since natal teeth are loose at the root, they can be easily knocked off during feeding – allowing the baby to swallow them. Therefore, they need to be extracted as soon as possible.


Your Approach As A Parent

 

a mother taking care of her baby with cysts

 

For starters – don’t panic. Panicking is not going to help with your baby’s problem. Epstein pearls don’t pose any threat and regress after a few weeks. So, it’s more likely that the paediatrician would ask you to stay put and watch the bumps wither away.


However, it would help if you didn’t try to pop these bumps. It is so because popping these cysts can expose them to opportunistic microorganisms that can cause serious infections. Thus, leading to more problems and complications for the baby that may actually harm your baby.


So please, don’t do that


When Should You Seek Professional Help?


If your baby develops any of the following symptoms, seek help from a paediatrician as soon as possible:


  • Bumps start bleeding
  • The baby looks pretty irritated and agitated
  • Bumps don’t appear to disappear after a month
  • Baby looks like they are in a lot of pain/discomfort

It’s best to get professional help as soon as you can. Since these pearls do not intend to cause any discomfort to your baby – if they do, it means there’s something wrong.


It’s fairly easy to confuse Epstein pearls with other conditions as well. For example, cysts like dental lamina cysts, congenital epulis and Bohn’s nodules can be mistaken for Epstein pearls. Along with infections like oral thrush, which is a yeast infection primarily involving the mouth.


Therefore, it’s always better to have your queries answered by a doctor.


Conclusion


We understand how concerning any issue regarding your baby can be. In this case, the appearance of the Epstein pearls is indeed worrying for many parents. However, please know that your baby is not in pain and that these bumps usually resolve independently.


However, if there’s any pain or discomfort – we’d advise you to get your baby checked by a professional healthcare provider.

 

Infant Congestion: Why Do Newborns Sneeze So Much?

Infant Congestion: Why Do Newborns Sneeze So Much?


Have you noticed your newborn sneezing quite frequently? And is it troubling you these days? Let us tell you that you have nothing to worry about because this is a common occurrence in many babies.


One of the most common reasons for your newborn sneezing could be infant congestion. However, it is not the only reason, as allergies, narrow nasal passageways, and dry air are other reasons for your infant sneezing so much.


In this article, we’ll explore the causes behind excessive sneezing and the home remedies you can use to help your newborn baby.


What Causes Babies To Sneeze A Lot?


We mean, there’s got to be a reason behind the sneezing. What actually makes the babies sneeze so much?


Well, there is a list of reasons that can help you in answering this question:


1. Sneeze Reflex


If you have heard about the cough reflex, then the sneeze reflex would be a piece of cake for you.


Babies sneeze whenever something foreign enters their nasal cavity. It could be breast milk during feeding, dust or mucus. A baby sneezes to expel them out of the nasal cavity to ensure that all these don’t enter the airways.


Intelligent, isn’t it?


2. Narrow Nasal Passages


Have you looked at the size of a newborn baby? It’s so tiny!


Then you can try to (at least) imagine how small and narrow the nasal passages would be. In infants, the nasal passageways can get clogged very easily, and in order to open them, babies sneeze.


It’s not like they want to – but they have to.


3. Dry Seasons & Dry Air


You would definitely come across your newborn sneezing more during autumn than in summer.


It is because of the dry air that irritates the nasal lining, causing it to release more mucus in order to keep the nasal cavity moist. And this eventually leads to a build-up of mucus, which makes your baby sneeze. 


4. Amniotic Fluid – Are You Still There?


Well, sometimes, the amniotic fluid isn’t really ready to leave – so it stays.

And when this happens, then it accumulates in your baby’s nose. Because of its accumulation, it can trigger the sneeze reflex, causing your baby to sneeze more than they usually do.


It’s not something to worry about as the amniotic fluid clears up in a few days.


5. Allergic Reactions


Newborns are incredibly delicate, and almost everything can cause an allergic reaction.


Your baby would likely be allergic to dust, pollen, the fragrance of your shampoo, or the material of the pillowcase – like we said before, almost everything.


The only thing you can do is figure out if it’s an allergy or not. And once you have determined the cause, then you can try your best to eliminate the agent.


6. Small Noses


While small noses are adorable and wanted by everyone, they can be a bit of a problem for newborns.


Because of the small size, the dust particles find it easy to lodge themselves and cause irritation in the nasal passageways. And inevitably, irritation is followed by sneezing.


Infant Congestion

 

chest congestion in babies

 

Let’s take a look at one of the most common problems in newborn babies – congestion.


Infants are newborns who fall in the age bracket of 0 till 2 months. Yes, this is when you label a newborn as an infant. And it is also a fact that the immune system is not fully developed by this time, allowing them to fall victim to diseases like – common cold.


Once your baby has contracted the common cold, the sneeze reflex would come into play, trying to expel the viruses out of the nasal cavity and the respiratory tract. It does this by making excessive mucus. The excess mucus can accumulate in the nose and the airways, which is referred to as congestion.


Now infant congestion can be of two types; nasal and chest congestion. Let’s dive into each one of them separately and understand the difference between them.


1. Nasal Congestion


Nasal congestion can occur as a result of allergies, deviated nasal septum or dry air.


Following are the symptoms that can help you figure out if your baby is suffering from a congested nose:


  • Coughing
  • Sniffling
  • Thick nasal mucus
  • Difficulty in eating

2. Chest Congestion


On the other hand, babies suffer from chest congestion due to pneumonia, premature childbirth or asthma. So if your baby is continuously coughing, wheezing, and grunting, then it could mean that your baby has a congested chest.


What Are The Treatment Options?

 

a smiling baby

 

Your baby having a congested chest, nose or sneezing a lot is not a grave problem. It happens to all the babies once in a while and only requires extra care. With proper attention, love and a few home remedies, there’s nothing you cannot fix.


1. Nasal Drops


Your doctor will help you with this. They’ll recommend the nasal saline drops that you should use, and only two or three drops are enough to break down the thick mucus.


2. Don’t Stop Feeding Your Baby


If your baby is unwell or is sneezing quite a lot, it doesn’t mean that you should stop feeding your baby. On the contrary, it is crucial to keep them hydrated and well-fed at all times. This will boost the immune system and help fight against the virus.


3. Care & Affection


It goes without saying that you need to take extra care of your baby while they are unwell. Hot baths and ensuring that they are comfortable at all times will help boost the recovery.


4. Humidifier


Humidifiers are easily available online and can prove to be quite effective against dry air. Cool mist is the best option when it comes to humidifiers, and it can help to loosen the excessive mucus causing congestion.


5. Massage


Even babies love massages!


You can try massaging the temples, forehead, bridge of the nose, and cheekbones as well. Having a congested nose or chest could be pretty annoying for your baby, and the best you can try is to give them comfort.


Conclusion


So, sneezing is okay; it’s normal. Infants tend to sneeze more than adults, and it’s not a problem. However, it isn’t always right to ignore a sneezing infant. If you notice a slight increase in the frequency of the sneezes – there’s no harm in getting a consultation.