Babies look cute when they rub their noses once or twice.
However, if baby keeps rubbing nose excessively and become fussy or cry, it is a cause for concern. So, why does a baby keep rubbing its nose?
There are plenty of reasons for that, and parenting is all about learning and growing.
So, here is the wealth of information that helps you identify the culprit that’s irritating your baby.
Why does a Baby Keeps Rubbing Nose?
There are several reasons why a baby rubs its nose. Each of them is discussed below.
#1 Unclean nose
The first thing you need to do when your baby is grabbing their nose and constantly whining is to check the inside of their nose.
It might just be a booger or dirt getting stuck, causing the itchiness. Use a sucker to clear up the nose.
#2 Tired Baby
Babies are curious beings and engage their mental and physical senses to explore the world around them.
They rub their eyes and nose to convey that it is time for their nap.
#3 Teething Phase
During the teething phase, babies experience a lot of pain and discomfort.
They attempt to soothe themselves by rubbing their nose and scratching their face to take the pain away.
Keep handy the teething toys that do not break off easily but still are easy on your baby’s teeth.
Refrigerate them before you give these toys to your baby to chew on them. The chilled toys help in managing the teething pain.
#4 Dusty Bedding
If you forget to change their sheets in the crib or their bedding, they feel dusty.
Your baby can be sensitive to dust St rubbing the nose might just go away once you change it.
#5 Stuffed Nose
When a baby has a cold, and their nose is stuffed, they try to open it up by rubbing.
Also, if they have a tricking sensation in the nose because of cold, they try to relieve that itchiness by rubbing their hands over their nose.
Help them blow out their nose or clean it yourself. Most babies have no idea how to blow their noses, so let it be a teaching moment.
Also, warm baths help soften the mucus buildup that makes it come out easily. Try a warm compress for a quick remedy.
#6 Dry Air
When temperatures increase, and the air does not have enough humidity, your mucus feels dry.
It gives the baby a weird feeling, and they start acting up by rubbing their nose. You can use a humidifier to help alleviate it.
#7 Newborn Reflexes
Newborns keep learning everything from the time they are born, and reflexes are one of them.
The most common action they do when exercising these reflexes is to bring their hands to the eyes and nose.
They rub various parts of their face, including their nose, eyes, and ears, when they feel fussy.
#8 Emotional cues
Even babies feel emotional for various actions such as hugging, songs, or talking to them.
They try to communicate their distress by rubbing various parts of their face.
Eyes and noses are readily accessible by their little hands in the early days, so they try to grab them at every possible opportunity.
#9 Outdoor Allergies
Babies also run their noses when they feel discomfort due to seasonal allergies.
The allergens such as pollen cause irritation in their nasal cavity when inhaled and lead to watery eyes and nose.
Also, environmental allergens such as exposure parks, beaches, or similar instances are a good reason.
It is best to consult a doctor for remedies rather than trying anything by yourself at home.
Since allergies can lead to serious consequences if not treated in time, every minute you spend wasting time is taxing on your baby’s health.
#10 Indoor Allergies
Stuffed animals, dusty rooms, plush pillows are all good places for dust mites.
These places and things are sometimes responsible for irritating your baby’s nose. If you have pets, it is best not to allow them into the room during the night.
You can tackle indoor allergies by sweeping, dusting, vacuuming your home, and regularly cleaning the air vents.
A quality air filter also aids in reducing the particles in the air.
Also see: Why Do Babies Growl
How to control allergens?
- Do not fill your complete flooring with the carpet, and also ensure that the carpeted area is vacuumed from time to time.
- Allergen proof your pillows, box springs, and mattresses using zip-up covers.
- Washing linens in hot water every 2 to 3 weeks and then drying them in a hot dryer help in destroying any dust mites in them.
- You can kill the dust mites on a soft toy by putting them in a sealable plastic bag and then freeze them for 5 hours. Repeating this process every week keeps them mite free.
- Use vaporizers and humidifiers only when necessary and not all the time as they increase the risk of dust mites and mold.
- Cuddly and your furry pets such as dogs and cats also cause allergies in your infant; try to keep a non-allergy-causing pet such as a fish.
How to diagnose allergies in babies?
Since there are several allergy-causing factors in and around your home, determine the root cause of an allergy.
Sometimes, there can be one or more allergy-causing irritants.
It is easy for a doctor to diagnose allergies when they have some help from parents.
Parents and caretakers should note down the symptoms as and when they happen. These diary notes should tell them what happened and when.
Be specific in noting down the symptoms by noting even the small details, such as it occurred after meals or so.
Also, keep your family health history and personal health details ready. All these efforts will come in handy when you visit a doctor.
Now you know why the baby keeps rubbing nose all the time. As your baby grows, most of these issues will vanish.
However, allergies need extra care even when they grow up.
Frequently Asked Questions
Why Do Babies Keep Rubbing Their Faces?
In the infant stage, babies are not fully developed. They move their limbs or rub their face as a reflex action while learning to control their body movements.
Why Do Babies Rub Their Eyes?
While the most common reason is sleepiness, it can be anything from tiredness to allergies.
Most reasons mentioned above also apply to issues with eyes. Check for eye infections.
Also, eyesight issues might be a reason in babies older than 6 months.
How To Identify Allergies In Babies?
If the baby has a runny nose or watery eyes, a red face, or a rash on the skin and is fussy, consider getting them checked for allergies.
If your baby is between 7 to 12 months, verify if they are crying from the teething pain.
Iesha is a loving mother of 2 beautiful children. She’s an active parent who enjoys indoor and outdoor adventures with her family. Her mission is to share practical and realistic parenting advice to help the parenting community becoming stronger.