Is Your Newborn Sneezing A Lot? This Could Be the Reason Why

Is there anything cuter than watching your newborn stretch, yawn, coo, and... sneeze? That tiny little "achoo!" can be nerve-wracking, but have no fear—newborns are built to sneeze.

"Similar to hiccups, sneezes are a normal physiologic response to neurologic input," says Rachel Schlueter, M.D., a pediatrician at Children's Hospital & Medical Center in Omaha, NE. "As babies adjust to the world outside of the uterus, these responses are very common and not typically cause for concern."

If your newborn is sneezing a lot, you may be wondering how much sneezing is too much and when to call the doctor. We talked to the experts to learn more about newborn sneezing.

Is It Normal for My Newborn To Sneeze a Lot?

Yes, it is normal (and natural) for newborns to sneeze a lot. "Frequent sneezing in newborns is normal. Usually, there's nothing to be concerned about, especially if other signs of illness don't accompany the sneezes," says Christine Kingsley, APRN, the health and wellness director of the Lung Institute in Manchester, Connecticut. "Babies sneeze as a way to clear their noses of germs and other particles. It's their reflex or natural defense against respiratory illnesses, so it doesn't necessarily mean that they have a cold."

Newborns are getting used to their new surroundings, and that includes having to deal with breathing air that might have dust and other particulates that can irritate the nasal cavities. And sure, it can feel alarming to watch your newborn sneezing since we often associate sneezing with allergies or sickness, but most of the time, it's nothing to be concerned about.

If your baby is sneezing a lot, try some of these tips:

Avoid burning scented candles or using air fresheners that rely on harsh chemicals to create a scent. Use air purifiers to filter the air in your home, which can reduce the amount of dust your baby is breathing. Vacuum regularly, especially if you have pets. Use houseplants that are natural air purifiers to help keep your home air clean—make sure to keep them out of reach of small kids.

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