My newborn makes all sorts of strange breathing noises.

Should I worry?Occasional sneezes, squeaks and snorts are completely normal for a newborn and aren’t usually anything to worry about. However, many parents seek reassurance from their health visitor about these noises. Your baby’s tiny lungs and nose have only just started inhaling air. The outside world is also dry compared with your womb, where she has been for the past nine months.Snorts and grunts happen because babies breathe through their noses. This allows them to feed at the same time as breathing. As your baby can’t blow her own nose, mucus stays there and produces a whistle, sniffle or a snort as air passes through. If mucus goes down the back of your baby’s throat it may cause her to gurgle. Mucus can also move further down to your baby’s voice box (larynx) and her windpipe (trachea), which may make her sound “chesty”. If you gently place your hand on your baby’s chest you may feel a gentle rattle. This is a vibration from her larynx. You may be able to feel vibrations lower down as well. This is because the organs that allow your baby to breathe (thoracic organs) are packed so tightly into her little chest. Her breathing may remain like this for several weeks, but this is usually nothing to worry about. In fact many new parents worry and visit their GP, only to be told that their baby’s chest sounds clear. Your baby’s breathing will be assessed at your postnatal check. This will take place when your baby is between six weeks and eight weeks. At this appointment, your GP will use a stethoscope to listen to her heart and chest. If you’re still concerned about your baby’s breathing, this check is a good time to ask your GP any questions you may have. It’s likely that the strange noises your baby is making are just part of her normal breathing. However, there are some warning signs that you should look out for. You should call an ambulance or take your baby to accident and emergency if she has:-More than 60 breaths a minute. -Persistent grunting with the effort of trying to breathe. -Retractions, when the muscles in your baby’s chest (under the ribs) and neck visibly go in and out much more deeply than usual. -Breathing that stops for longer than 10 seconds or regular shorter pauses in her breathing of five to 10 seconds. -Very pale or blue skin, or the inside of her lips and tongue are blue (cyanosis). This may mean that the blood is not receiving enough oxygen from her lungs. If your baby is making a high-pitched rasping sound (stridor) or has a barking cough, she may have croup, a common childhood virus. Contact your GP who will be able to diagnose her and advise you on the best course of treatment. Most of the time, noisy breathing isn’t a sign of anything serious and probably won’t bother your baby. She should stop the grunts, whistles and snorts by the time she reaches her first birthday.