Vicks VapoRub is a great ointment which can help relieve the effects of congestion as well as cough. When applied directly to the chest, it makes a person feel better and breathe more properly. On cold, frosty nights when your cough is bothering you, there is nothing quite like Vicks to make you feel better.
Kids, especially little babies are often sick with cough and cold. The problem is particularly bad because babies essentially breathe through their nose and when their nose is blocked, they can spend all night wailing and crying. This is stressful not only for the babies themselves but for the parents as well.
In such cases, many parents wonder if its ok to rub a little Vicks VapoRub on their child to make him feel better and sleep peacefully.
Can You Use Vicks On Your Baby?
Although Vicks is a great gel for adults, it should not be applied to babies under 2 years of age, according to expert pediatricians. In young babies, it can actually lead to worsening of symptoms and even respiratory distress.
Vicks contains camphor as well methanol, which can be harmful in young babies. These and other ingredients present in Vicks VapoRub can act as irritants, causing the airways to produce even more mucus, which can lead to further breathing problems.
This is particularly important if Vicks is applied directly under the nose, as the vapors will be inhaled in large quantities. Babies have narrower airways than adults which have more chances of being blocked by secretions. This is why in serious and rare cases, Vicks application can even cause severe respiratory distress.
When applied under the nose, infants can end up ingesting the gel, which can then enter their wind pipe and result in choking.
A lot of parents apply Vicks to the feet, thinking that this is a safe route of administration. While it is not as dangerous as applying Vicks directly under the nose, it can still be harmful. Similarly, it should not be applied to a small baby’s clothes.
For Babies Older Than Two Years Of Age:
Vicks VapoRub can be safely applied on babies more than 2 years of age. These babies have wider airways which will not be irritated by the contents of Vicks.
In children older than 2 years of age, Vicks VapoRub can relieve the symptoms of congestion. It can open a blocked nose and help the child breathe more easily. As a result, your little one will be able to sleep more comfortably. Methanol present in Vicks acts on the brain cells and induces a sensation of cold, which in turn makes the child feel as if he can breathe better than before. The same occurs in adults.
Vicks also helps in reducing cough as it clears up the secretions in respiratory pathway. Again, this helps in calming the baby down and helping him have a more relaxed sleep.
How Should You Apply Vicks?
In babies older than 2 years, you can apply Vicks to the feet, chest or the clothes. Avoid applying it directly under the nose, even in adults.