Vaporiser or Humidifier: Which is Better for My Baby?

‘Tis the season for blocked little noses and scratchy coughs…while there’s not much you can do curatively for a viral cold, vaporisers and humidifiers are often suggested to help ease baby’s discomfort–but which works better?


According to paediatrician Dr. Sears, vaporisers are preferable for a couple reasons:

They’re cleaner

It’s obviously important that babies are breathing clean air, and because vaporisers produce steam, the hot vapour kills germs (which also prevents airborne transmission of the virus).

Easier to breathe

Because they produce steam, vaporisers can double as bedroom heating–which means you can turn down the radiators and thus lessen dry air circulating. Dry air causes the mucus lining airways to thicken into globs, making breathing more difficult. Warm, moist air from vaporisers thins and loosens mucus to ease breathing.

The primary concern with regards to vaporisers is the steam’s burn risk: keep out of baby and toddlers’ reach, and pack away when not in use.

If you’d prefer to buy a humidifier, opt for ultrasonic models that utilise high-frequency sound to disperse water particles into fine mist–which penetrates breathing passages more effectively.