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Runny Noses

How do you make a Kleenex dance?   Put a little buggy in it.

Runny noses occurs off and on for our life time and the frustration is to decide when to call and what to do.  Especially in the very young.  If the mucus is clear, it is going to be a viral cold or an allergy.  Treating this with a decongestant/antihistamine will not stop the nose any sooner.  They will not prevent ear infections.  The medications are so you can rest.  If the runny nose or cough are bothering the child then treat them but do not give medications because it just bothers you.  Just as you and I do.... we take meds if it is interfering with our sleep or function.  Otherwise we just snif, blow, and go.

If the mucus is green or yellow, there may be bacteria in the mucus.  But it may be just in the mucus and not in the body of the child and not causing disease.  If there are no other symptoms such as laying around, fever, irritable and decrease appetite, then it does not need antibiotics.  We are trying no to over do them. If the green nose is causing symptoms, then it may need medications, especially if there is fever.   When it is thick green mucus, then the cold medications will not slow it down.   The cold medicine may work after the antibiotic turns it clear.

Dr. Knapp