How to clear phlegm?

Discussion in 'Baby, Toddler, Child Health Concerns' started by diymummy, Jan 8, 2010.

  1. diymummy

    diymummy Moderator

    My baby is having a fever again. He is super congested with phlegm. I've seen a PD and he has prescribed some meds.

    I'm wondering if there's any other way to help baby clear off phlegm?
  2. apollo

    apollo Well-Known Member

    tt time ds has LOTSA phelgm tt pd also shocked. he taught us to use hand to pat his back and chest few times a day, each time ard 5-10min.. but the hand must make a 'mountain' shape... then when u pat, got a 'pok pok' sound.. but cannot pat right aft milk, ard 1hr aft milk then u pat.. it helps alot for ds, aft 1-2 days, he will slowly vomit out the phelgm.. =)
    diymummy likes this.
  3. diymummy

    diymummy Moderator

    Sigh I so worried.. He's so congested until he milk also don't want to drink. I use syringe then he choke on the milk...
  4. apollo

    apollo Well-Known Member

    did u bring him to pd? what pd said? cos my pd said if a baby's feeding is affected, must bring him to see doctor...
  5. epicurean

    epicurean Member

    Hi diymummy,

    My boy (20 months old) perpetually has phlegm issues coz of the muscle relaxant & tranquiliser that he has to take. What really helps him to clear his phlegm (either by coughing it out or swallowing it & it comes out in his poop) is a combination of advice from his neuro, nurses & osteopath:

    1. To avoid vomitting out milk, do chest taps 1 hour after the end-time of the feed. Chest taps are what reginakoh has recommended - cup your hand and tap on your boy's chest to create vibrations to loosen the phlegm so that it's easier for him to clear. For his front, position him at 45 degrees recline and tap 5 minutes on each side of the chest (right lung & left lung). For his back, you can choose to drape him over your shouder & do the same for both sides. Can do chest taps a few times thru'out the day and esp before bedtime so that he can sleep better without the congestion bothering him.

    2. Give him water regularly to thin out the phlegm ... makes it much easier to clear.

    3. If he's extremely congested, ask your paed if he could prescribe Fluimucil or Rhinatiol which thins out phlegm. Fluimucil is better coz it's non-drowsy. Give him a sachet of Fluimucil then follow up with chest taps ... he'll cough quite a bit coz of the effect of Fluimucil to get him to expel the phlegm.

    My boy has very thick, sticky phelgm which he clears regularly with chest taps. I only need to use Fluimucil when he's sick coz that's when the amount of phlegm increases exponentially! When he really can't clear it despite both methods, we suction it out ... it's an invasive procedure and he hates it so that's the ultimate last resort.

    Don't worry, your boy will be able to clear his phlegm and congestion with your help coz children have a strong sense of self-preservation :)
    diymummy likes this.
  6. diymummy

    diymummy Moderator

    Hi Regina,

    Yes I brought him to see the PD. The PD gave him meds but they seem to be working very slowly?

    Actually when I brought him to see the PD, he wasn't that congested yet... Haiz....

    Hi epicurean,

    Thanks for your post! It really helps.

    I started doing back taps last night and just, this morning. And yeah, it helps. He was coughing more and it "sounds" like the phlegm is coming up along with his coughs. He didn't spit it out though, so I think he swallowed it?

    I will do the chest taps later today.

    My boy hates water so I'm trying to down more milk. But his intake is really little because he can't breathe so he gets tired of sucking from the bottle. I tried to feed him from a spoon and a syringe but both were rejected by him.

    I've tried using Rhinathiol but my PD said it's weaker than Solmux. That's the med that he prescribed to my son. Will ask him abt Fluimucil if my boy doesn't get better by Monday and I have to bring him to see the doc again.

    I also tried to suction the phlegm out through his nose and my boy hates it too. He hates it so much that I was wondering if it is ok to do the suction thing a few times a day?

    Also, when you say that your boy poos out the phlegm because he swallows it, does his poo looks phlegmy?

  7. apollo

    apollo Well-Known Member

    dearie, medi wont wk so fast for babies, cos their medi are mild. my pd told me phelgm needs 1-2 week to recover AFTER cough has recover... so whenever ds down with cough, he will take ard 1week+ to fully recover from cough and ANOTHER 1-2 weeks for the phelgm to go away..

    as for the patting chest, maybe he will vomit out the phelgm 2-3 days aft u started patting him. continue to do until his phelgm is fully cleared =)
  8. epicurean

    epicurean Member

    Hi diymummy,

    Sorry! I didn't make it clear in my post that by chest taps, I'm referring to both front & back taps coz the overall vibrations created are more effective at loosening phlegm. If your boy's nose is also congested, you can give him infant nose drops and add in nasal taps. Our osteo taught us this routine:

    1. Nasal taps - place 3 fingers over cheekbones & tap 10 times on those fingers with 3 fingers of your other hand. Repeat for the cheekbones. This action creates vibrations in the nasal cavity to loosen phlegm to move down the throat.

    2. Then do chest taps, can start either with front or back but do both. The whole process takes around 20 minutes. I usually distract my boy with some music or TV during the process.

    You can check if your boy has indeed swallowed his phlegm by looking at the consistency of his poop ... there'll be 'gooey' parts compared to his usual poop consistency.

    If your boy is resisting feed coz bothered by his congestion, try to aim to do the tapping process in between feeds so that he'll clear some phlegm to feel better to feed. The nose drops also did help my boy when he struggled to drink when his system was so clogged up. You do need to be patient coz it takes time for your boy to learn to clear his phlegm, to recover & for the phlegm situation to revert back to normal.

    Btw, nasal suction doesn't work for my boy coz his phlegm is so sticky & thick. The suctioning I was referring is the process of putting a thin tube into his nose or mouth, down his throat & using the suctioning machine to get the phlegm out. It's traumatic to say the least, for me & him. He so hates it!
    apollo likes this.
  9. diymummy

    diymummy Moderator

    Wow.. That's along time... Sigh...

    Sorry, can I also ask, I remember you mentioned that your boy got bronchitis from the coughin? How did you know that it became bronchitis?

    Thanks! Will look out for the gooey stuff in his poop.

    Thanks for all the info epicurean!

    For the nose drops, are you using Otrivin?
  10. epicurean

    epicurean Member


    Nope, his paed advised me to get Iliadin (for infants) which is available at pharmacies without prescription.

    Btw if your boy appears to have trouble coughing out his phlegm (eg. he's really struggling, face turning red from coughing or gagging), put him on his side and pat his back. This position helps to clear whatever that is in his airways and minimises risk of aspiration. I put my boy on the sofa which is lined with a piece of incontinence sheet and a nappy cloth to catch the phlegm. Sometimes he's so stubbornly determined to cough out the phlegm, he coughs like those 'ah peks' at coffeeshops! So that's his vom station :)
    diymummy likes this.
  11. Phoebii Cheng

    Phoebii Cheng Well-Known Member

    Hi diymummy,

    If your boy is coughing a long time, and his breathing got the "rrrr" sound, most probably it is bronchitis.....actually bronchitis is "leng ge" or cooling cough that's what my son's PD said.....

    Normally we are told to avoid dusty area or toys for my son, so we dun buy soft toys for him....

    For phlegm right, one of my colleague told me to give my son the pearl powder...he said it works, but bf tht my PD always give my son ventolin to open the airway so that he can cough out the phlegm......

    My PD oso told me to do the tapping of the back, but now that my son is big he does not want to keep still for us to do tht.....we only do it when he is younger
    diymummy likes this.
  12. apollo

    apollo Well-Known Member

    from what my pd and nurses told me, if a baby is down with bronchitis, the cough will affect his slp at nite. which means, in the middle of night he will cough until he WAKES UP, aft he is 'done' with his coughing, den go bk to slp. tt's what happened to ds during that few mths.. on and off.. recover and come bk again.. hopefully bronchitis will leave him forever.. =)
  13. diymummy

    diymummy Moderator

    Thanks epicurean, Phoebii and Regina mummies for the tips! Will try it out on my son. :)

    Yeah regina, hope your son will not get bronchitis again!
    Last edited: Jan 10, 2010
    apollo likes this.
  14. epicurean

    epicurean Member


    You're welcome :) Really hope that your boy gets well soon ... take good care of yourself too.
    diymummy likes this.
  15. shespice

    shespice Member

    Hi mommies, my gal also have cough, running nose and phlegm. I sometimes can hear the phlegm when she is breathing.
    Today went to doc and was given cough and running nose medicine and ventolin also. Could she be having bronchities also? She tends to cough more at night especially since lying down. These few nights she cry more also and wakes up in the middle of the night.
    When you child is coughing and having running nose, do you mommies still have the room air-con on or the fan? I tried not to use air-con (my temp is usually 28 deg) and use only fan but she perspires in the night. Any thoughts?
    Thanks :)
  16. diymummy

    diymummy Moderator

    Hi shespice,

    I still on the aircon for my son but I will make it warmer and use the fan to circulate the air a bit. Because when aircon is warmer, the air tends to get a bit stuffy.

    I also let my son sleep on his tummy so that the runny nose will drop out and not clog up in his nose. But in the middle of the night he also flip to sleep on his back.

    If your PD has heard your baby's lungs and said it sounds clear, then she doesn't have bronchitis.
    shespice likes this.
  17. apollo

    apollo Well-Known Member

    did pd mention tt ur girl has bronchitis? if he did not mention, u shd trust him =)

    when ds was coughing very badly, we will not on the aircon.. or on it for 1-2 hrs b4 bedtime and wait until he is aslp or the room is cool alrdy, off the aircon and on the fan.. if he is improving and left those mild cough, we will still on the aircon..

    try to let ur girl slp slightly upright so she can breathe better =)
  18. Phoebii Cheng

    Phoebii Cheng Well-Known Member

    We don't on the air-con most of the time now....and since then we realise that my son has been well even though now I got flu
  19. shespice

    shespice Member

    Hi mommies, thanks for sharing. My gal seems to be a little better with the medication. The pd gave her cough syrup, runny nose syrup and ventolin. Yesterday when she breathe can hear the phlegmy sound but today slightly better. Will monitor and hope she gets better. I didn't bring her to the pd myself yesterday coz hubby brought her. But the last time when she had cough and runny nose, the pd did say that it could be mild bronchitis so must take care otherwise could develop into asthma. Unfortunately, as advised by the pd, as long as my gal goes to infant care centre, chances of her catching another bug from another kid is high, but until I decide to stop work, we still need the infant care I guess. Last night, I didn't turn on the air con but had the fan on for her.
  20. diymummy

    diymummy Moderator

    Get well soon Phoebii mummy!!!

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