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Concerned with baby scratching their nose? This is what it might mean

Your baby scratching their nose could mean more than a simple itch

Once your baby finds their hands, they have to touch everything. But you’ve noticed your baby scratching their nose more than normal. At first, it seemed like it was only an itch, but now it’s turned into your little one constantly touching their nose.

If you have seen your tot grabbing at their nose and getting whiny, there are a few things to check out and try to get them back to a happy baby. An itchy nose outside could mean something needs a deeper look inside. Let’s see what your baby’s extra interest in their nose could really be about.

A little child holding a tissue in their hand and crinkling their face up

Start with the basics

Check in their nose

The first thing to do would be to check up their nose. Your baby might have a bit of dirt or a baby booger in there that is irritating them. Get the sucker and make sure that all is clear. If your baby shows signs that they might be willing, teach them to blow their nose. It might seem too obvious or too simple, but sometimes it is just that. If only all baby cries and cues were that easy to fix.

Check out their bedding

You love to sleep on fresh, clean sheets, right? Your baby’s nose could be getting irritated from dirty and dusty bedding. With all the excitement and then the sleep deprivation that comes with a new baby, it could be something that is easily overlooked on 3 hours of interrupted sleep.

It’s hard to remember to do everything with a new addition at home. Write it down on the board, set new sheets out to remind yourself, or whatever else you have to do to get it done. You don’t like sleeping on gross, stale sheets and that’s something that’s possibly messing with your baby’s nose.

Your baby needs a nap

This is what every parent wants to hear – the answer to a problem is to put your baby down for a nap. Your baby scratching at their nose could mean they don’t want to rub their eyes anymore. If only a nap was the answer to everything, right?

If your baby is overly tired and doesn’t know what else to do with their hands, they’ll make their way to their nose. Getting your little one to take even a small nap resets their little brain and gets them back to normal. We all get cranky, and a nap is the answer to our problems.

Dad holding baby in nursery

If the basics are fine, check for a cold and beyond

Your baby could be sick

If your little one has a runny nose due to a cold, they don’t know what else to do but to keep rubbing at their nose. Get your little one some medicine and keep their nose clear to help your baby leave their nose alone.

When you have a runny nose from a cold, it seems you blow your nose every five minutes. Your baby needs you to do that for them. Don’t forget to keep their nose moisturized, so a dry nose isn’t adding to their discomfort.

Your baby could be cutting a tooth

Ah – the sneaky tooth coming in. This might be overlooked, but if your baby has a runny nose and is always messing with it, they could be cutting a tooth. A runny nose is one symptom of a tooth coming in.

Be careful, but open up your baby’s mouth and feel around in there. If you get bit, that answers your question. If you don’t feel a tooth, feel for a bump and look for a reddened area. If you find any of these clues, this is why your child is worrying about their nose. Cutting a tooth is some serious work!

Parents cleaning a baby's face

If everything else has been ruled out, your baby could have allergies

This isn’t the option you want to hear, but don’t ignore the signs. Do allergies run in your family? Has your baby been rubbing their nose for way longer than when a normal cold would last? Your baby could have allergies and doesn’t know what to do to get the symptoms to stop.

If you think your child has allergies, go ahead and make an appointment with the pediatrician. Remember that you shouldn’t just buy any allergy medicine for your little one. If your child is under 2, you’ll need to get familiar with some natural allergy relief for toddlers because most medicines won’t be safe yet, but there are plenty of non-medicinal ways to help your tot’s nose.

Things to try when your baby has an itchy nose due to allergies

  • Watch your child’s reaction when outside
  • Nice warm baths at night to drain their nose and get dust/dirt off
  • No pets in the room at night
  • Warm compresses as often as possible

If you have tried all the basics, checked every fold and nook for any sign of a reason why, and your baby is still going at their nose, take your little one to the doctor. But like with any reason your child cries or is fussy, it’s best to go through the basic checklist of what could be bothering them. So, if you notice your tiny tot won’t leave their nose alone, make sure you check off everything on our list to get your baby’s hands off of their nose and back on their toys.

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