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How can nasal block be treated?

Q: My 28 months old daughter has a persistent nose block. The doctor told me that her nasal passage may be small and she is finding it difficult to breathe. And when she will grow up it would get better. Can I regularly give her Nasivion - saline? Is it ok if I repeat it every 2 hours or so? Her father has asthma.

A:You have mentioned that your two and a half year old child has persistent nasal block and that the father has asthma. Most children have allergy or another condition called vasomotor rhinitis. In both these conditions, the nasal mucosa may show unstable responses to changes in temperature, cold draughts or to inhalation of allergens like dust, fumes or hair from pets. Sneezing, nasal block and watering from the nose may result. When there is a family history of inhalational allergy or asthma, this may be very frequent. When the nasal discharge turns thick, yellowish or when the child gets fever, antibiotics will have to be started. Your paediatrician is the best person to decide on such things. Very rarely, during the development of the baby inside the womb, the nasal passages may fail to canalise. This condition is called atresia of the nasal passage. When this failure is total, the condition would be recognised at birth. When such failure is partial, the child may show features of nasal block and recurrent cold. A paediatrician well versed with ENT or an ENT surgeon familiar with paediatrics can do some simple tests and rule out this condition.


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