Is it normal that my 5 weeks old boy clears his throat during his
sleep at night? After he clears his throat, he also stretches his
arms and legs and then goes back to sleep.
He doesn’t have any signs of difficulty in breathing and it doesn’t seem
to bother his sleep.
He didn’t do this before and just started at his week 4 of age, is
it something I need to worry?
Please help, thank you!
First, Tracy I would like to say thank you for your question. There are many possible explanations for why your infant might be making this noise. As long as he is sleeping, feeding, growing and developing fine, there is likely no need to worry.
Many newborns are congested around this age and a bit of post nasal drip can cause a throat clearing sound. To help relieve normal newborn nasal congestion, try the following:
- Run a cool mist humidifier or vaporizer in the room during sleep to keep the skin inside of the nose moist
- Loosen mucus by placing a drop of nasal saline (or breast milk) in each nostril. Your baby may cough or clear her throat as the saline drips from the nose down the back of her throat.
- Remove visible mucus by gentle suctioning with a bulb syringe.
Throat clearing associated with arching the back or frequent spit up may also be a sign of reflux. So if your baby is spitting up, not feeding well, arching or crying excessively, talk to your pediatrician.
Newborns also stretch and startle. It’s a natural reflex. If you are concerned take a video to show to your pediatrician at your next visit.
If your baby isn’t feeding well, is spitting up, having trouble breathing or his skin changes color, call your pediatrician right away.