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A 24-year-old female asked:

what are humidifiers? how can be used to treat cold in infants ?

2 doctor answers6 doctors weighed in
Dr. Ralph Wolf
Psychiatry 39 years experience
Humidifiers: Humidifiers add water vapor to the air we breathe. It does not 'treat' cold symptoms but makes the air your child breathes less dry. Can help with breathing being more comfortable. Good luck.
Dr. James Ferguson
Pediatrics 46 years experience
Moisturizes air: Humidifiers are generally a water source with a fan and some sort of wick, often fabric.The fan draws air across the wick which adds water to the air. It's best use is in settings where dry heat has extracted moisture from the air and made it dry enough to dehydrate your nasal passages and airway. It is never needed in a humid setting.It does not treat a cold, but makes dry heat less irritating.

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A 31-year-old member asked:

Is it safe to put Vicks vapor rub in mist humidifier for infant?

1 doctor answer1 doctor weighed in
Dr. James Ferguson
Pediatrics 46 years experience
Age ??: Early infancy is marked by marked sensitivity to irritants ; dependence on narrow nasal passages for breathing. Later childhood employs mouth breathing to bypass much of the congestion. I hate Vicks steam; consider it air pollution. A lifestyle audit to eliminate any odors/irritants in a kids sleeping area + humidity or steam as long as the measured humidity.

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Last updated May 12, 2016
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