Parents and children preparing meal in clean kitchen

What Is the Best Humidifier for Kids?

This content has been reviewed and updated on January 5, 2024. 

Keeping your children healthy is a top priority as a parent or caregiver. Have you ever noticed that your kids are under the weather more often in the fall and winter months? Although kids are decked out head to toe in hats, mittens, puffy coats, and boots before going outside, playing in the snow and slush is often to blame for their stuffy noses, sore throats, and additional cold-like symptoms later. 

Even though viruses are the likely culprits for winter illnesses, you may want to limit your children's time outdoors during the colder months. Prolonged exposure to low temperatures and the wind chill factor can impact body temperature, and the dry air outdoors paired with the heated indoor environment can lead to discomfort that can feel like a seasonal illness. Using a children's humidifier helps maintain optimal indoor humidity levels year-round, making it the key to addressing kids' skin and respiratory wellness needs and comfort.

What Is the Optimal Indoor Humidity Level for Children?

Let's start by noting that children and adults need humidity to remain healthy. Optimal relative humidity levels for year-round comfort should fall between 30% and 50%. Keep indoor humidity closer to 50% (and no more than 60%) in homes with children.

Maintaining adequate humidity levels might be easier said than done, as weather and seasonality affect how much moisture is in indoor and outdoor air. Outdoor humidity levels drop significantly in fall and winter because cold air cannot hold moisture like warm air in the spring and summer months. Although the forced heat from a furnace combats the cold to keep your child cozy, it also dries out the air in the process. This is not to say that your family is in the clear during summer's heat waves, as cranking the air conditioner can also make the air dry.

How a Humidifier Aids Kids' Skin & Respiratory Wellness

Mother and baby with Canopy Nursery Humidifier

Children can experience discomfort and health concerns when the air is too dry. Babies and toddlers can't articulate that they aren't feeling well, which can cause sleepless nights for youngsters and their parents. That's why humidifiers are valuable devices to keep in your child's room and the main living area year-round. A humidifier turns water into water vapor, which is released into living spaces to moisten the air. The added moisture benefits children in numerous ways, including:

Alleviate Skin Itchiness and Irritation

Children's skin is thin and loses moisture faster than adults' skin. Their immune systems also need to mature enough to ward off common illnesses adults can manage. This means your child's skin is more vulnerable to the effects of a dry environment. The dryness pulls moisture from the skin, which can cause itchiness, flakiness, dry scalp, chapped lips, scaley hands, and eczema flare-ups. Using a humidifier to add moisture to the air will combat indoor dryness and alleviate your youngster's skin problems by improving their moisture barrier and reducing transepidermal water loss (TEWL).

Ease Congestion & Soothe Dry Sinuses

Nasal congestion and dry sinuses could be to blame for your child's restless nights. Dry air causes congestion by thickening the mucus in nasal passages, hence your youngster's stuffy nose. Conversely, a dry environment can dry out the mucous membranes lining the sinuses, leading to a bloody nose. Running a humidifier can reduce nasal congestion by thinning and breaking apart the mucus clogging nasal passages. The water vapor also keeps the sinuses moist to alleviate irritation.

Relieve Sore Throat Discomfort

To call a sore throat aggravating is an understatement. Each cough can feel like little daggers scrapping the throat. The painful sting can cause your child to toss and turn in bed at night, leaving them cranky in the morning. Breathing in dry air can cause your child's discomfort by pulling moisture from the throat. Turning on a humidifier will moisten your child's throat to alleviate the soreness.

Ward Off Cold-Causing Viruses

As mentioned earlier, children's immune systems haven't fully developed, which makes it easier for them to catch a cold when compared to adults. Exposure to viruses is the reason why your child develops colds. Viruses are transmitted in various ways, including breathing in air droplets. A cold can cause congestion, asthma attacks, and other respiratory problems. A humidifier can effectively reduce the risk of your child developing a cold, as it is harder for viruses to travel in moist air.     

Why Choose a Cool Mist Evaporative Humidifier for Kids?

Mother and child sitting on sofa next to Canopy Humidifier Plus

When searching for the best kids' humidifier, set your sights on one with cool mist

evaporative technology. It is an ideal option to keep your child's throat and skin moist, ease congestion, and ward off the common cold—and it keeps them safe in the process.

What is a cool mist evaporative humidifier, and what makes it different? All humidifiers require water, which is often absorbed through a filter. What makes a cool mist unit different is that fan inside the device evaporates the water and releases it as an invisible, room-temperature stream of moisture instead of hot steam. Contaminants are left behind in the filter, ensuring the moist air your child breathes in is clean.

Warm mist humidifiers can be risky in homes with children. These humidifiers generate heat and release steam, which can burn your youngster's fingers. Since the steam is visible, it can attract curious kids who might want to touch or grab at the device.

Caring for Your Canopy Humidifier

The upkeep requirements for a Canopy evaporative cool mist humidifier make it a simple, convenient choice for busy families. A dishwasher does most of the work keeping the tray and water tank clean.

First, unplug the humidifier and disassemble the removable parts. Put the cap, fan, tray, and water tank in the dishwasher on the normal cycle. Use a damp cloth to wipe down the main housing and replace the old filter with a new one when you reassemble the device.   

Kid-Friendly Hydration & Fragrance

With several models to choose from, Canopy makes it easy to find a humidifier to suit your needs. The Nursery Humidifier is ideal for increasing your baby's comfort and ensuring a good night's rest. The pediatrician-approved device hydrates up to 500 square feet of space and offers up to 36 hours of uninterrupted hydration.

The Nursery Humidifier + Filter Subscription bundle includes the two-piece Little Dreams Aroma Kit. The Rise blend features citrusy orange and minty, earthy eucalyptus aromas to help your baby breathe better. The calming scents of vanilla and lavender in the Lull blend will help lull your little one to sleep. The filter should be replaced every six weeks, which makes the subscription option that includes a new filter every 45 days a worthwhile investment.  

Keep the Humidifier Plus in the main living areas, as the device can hydrate up to 1,000 square feet. This means everyone in the family can benefit from a steady stream of moist air. The Humidifier Plus bundle includes a filter, diffusion well, and three-piece aroma kit. You can also opt to receive a new filter, diffusion well, and aroma kit every 45 days.

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