Noisy Breathing in Infants: Knowing When to Seek Medical Advice

18 October 2023

Babies’ breathing sounds can be surprisingly noisy due to their narrow nostrils and throats. When air passes through these small spaces along with saliva and other secretions, it can create a variety of noises ranging from snuffles to grunting sounds.

Dr Lim Wei Leng, a paediatrician at Sunway Medical Centre, assures that this is completely normal and should not be a cause for concern if the baby is otherwise healthy and feeding well.


Identifying Normal Baby’s Breathing Noises

To determine if your baby's noises are normal, consider the following factors:

  • Baby's overall health and behavior
  • Absence of excessive coughing or runny nose
  • Ability to feed and suck effectively

As your baby grows and their airways expand, the noises they make will likely decrease over time.

Tips for Managing Your Baby Noises

While it can be stressful to hear your baby making unusual noises, there are a few strategies to help you manage their sounds:

  • Maintain a calm environment: Keep the surroundings as peaceful as possible to minimize additional noise and stimulation.
  • Focus on proper feeding: Ensure your baby is latching correctly and feeding well to help reduce any feeding-related noises.
  • Monitor your baby's health: Keep an eye on your baby's overall health and seek professional advice if you are concerned about their noises or other symptoms.

When to Consult a Paediatrician?

While most baby noises are normal, it's essential to consult a paediatrician if you notice any of the following:

  • Persistent or worsening noises
  • Difficulty breathing or feeding
  • Signs of illness, such as fever or excessive coughing

If you notice persistent or worsening noises or difficulty breathing or feeding your baby, it's important to seek medical help. Don't hesitate to seek medical advice if you're concerned about your baby's health.


Babies’ breathing noises can be a source of anxiety for new parents, but understanding the reasons behind their sounds and how to manage them can help alleviate stress. It's important to remember that most baby noises are normal and will go away with time.

By keeping an eye on your baby's health and seeking professional advice when needed, you can confidently navigate this noisy stage of infancy. Book an appointment with our paediatricians for more information: