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Old 10-31-2011, 07:35 AM   #1
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Cool or Warm Mist Humidifier

OK, so I own one of each type of humidifier. I thought they were both good to use for respiratory illness but Dr. Sears says a warm mist (not cool) should be used to help with coughing at night. Both of my sons need it and they sleep in separate rooms. So I'm wondering if I need to buy another warm mist humidifier, or if I can just use the cool mist. Does anyone know anything about this? I really don't want to buy another humidifier.



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Old 10-31-2011, 08:26 AM   #2
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Re: Cool or Warm Mist Humidifier

I would not use a warm mist humidifier. The risk of kiddo getting burned is too great, IMO, and the mist is cold before it hits the child anyway.
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Old 10-31-2011, 08:29 AM   #3
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When we lived in Colorado we had to use a cool mist every night or DD woke up stuffy from all the dry air. The couple of times she had a cold we used a warm mist Vicks one with the menthol stuff for a few days then went back to the cool one for every day
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Old 10-31-2011, 08:44 AM   #4
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Re: Cool or Warm Mist Humidifier

We've used both and I prefer the cool. Only because the worry of the warm mist scares me. I was always worried they would dump it on themselves or accidently knock it down or pull it down on themselves. It's boiled water.
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Old 10-31-2011, 10:02 AM   #5
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Re: Cool or Warm Mist Humidifier

We have used both and the cool mist just didn't seem to do any good. Maybe our is different than what some of the PP have experienced but the outside doesn't get hot. It feels warm but not hot to the touch and wouldn't burn you. We keep it up where LO can't reach it but I am not too worried that he'd be able to hurt himself with it. The heating mechanism is all inside and the water stays room temp till it goes through the heating mech. It has really helped with his congestion.
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Old 10-31-2011, 10:58 AM   #6
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Re: Cool or Warm Mist Humidifier

I like warm mist. Cool mist doesn't do it for us. If you buy another, they make a combo you can switch between warm and cool, that way you don't run into them both needing it and only have 1 again.
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Old 10-31-2011, 11:03 AM   #7
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Re: Cool or Warm Mist Humidifier

Cool mist - we use the dragon one.
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Old 10-31-2011, 11:27 AM   #8
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Re: Cool or Warm Mist Humidifier

I've heard that you should use the cool mist, since the warm one can burn your child. But, the few times I used the cool mist one, it just made the room so cold! Thanfully we haven't needed to use it since then.
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Old 10-31-2011, 12:25 PM   #9
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Re: Cool or Warm Mist Humidifier

We went with a Steam humidifier. Ours holds a tank of cold water and just lets a tiny bit in at a time to the heating element that gets turned into steam. I keep it away from the kids and they have been told every single time that it is turned on that it is dangerous to touch it and it could burn them. They have never touched it.

Below is some info on the different types. The bolded under the cool mist is why we didn't go with the cool mist type. We already deal with mold wanting to grow around our windows, I don't need another thing the could have mold growing in it. Our tap water is also filled with minerals, and I don't want the kids breathing them in. I also don't want to have to wash the whole thing with soap and water every day! LOL!
Cool-Mist Humidifier

These machines work by making water vapor through a rapidly turning disk within the water of the humidifier. Because the vapor from the machine is not heated, there is no risk of burning the child should the water spill or she places her face close to where the vapor escapes. The biggest drawback to cool-mist humidifiers is that the cool water can be an excellent breeding ground for mold and bacteria. Therefore, it is very important (and somewhat bothersome) to follow the manufacturer's instructions concerning cleaning which usually includes cleansing the tank on a daily basis with soap and water. In addition, these machines are quite efficient at dispersing the minerals within tap water which can cause health problems themselves. So, distilled water should be used in cool-mist humidifiers.

Steam Vaporizer

These devices are less likely to have a lot of mold and bacterial growth, but the risk of burn can be significant. Vapor is made in these machines by using a heating element to cause steam. This method does not cause minerals to be dispersed in the air. So, tap water can often be used with these devices making them much less expensive to operate. However, because of the very high temperature of the water, these should not be used for younger children.

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Old 10-31-2011, 02:27 PM   #10
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Re: Cool or Warm Mist Humidifier

Yes - like me_just_me said, there are advantages and disadvantages to both.

If you go with cool mist, remember that it will make the room cooler, and you have to religiously clean and disinfect it like every day so that you don't get mold/bacteria sprayed out in the water. And, the cold can sometimes make congestion worse, while a little extra warmth helps soothe it. Those are the biggest problems.

The warm mist should only be hot at the point where the steam actually sprays out of the machine. The tank/etc. should be cool. Since it boils the water, there may be bacteria in the tank, but it isn't sprayed out in the room. Many newer models, or those made for use in children's rooms, have a guard on the steam vent to keep little fingers from getting close enough to be burned; they should also shut off automatically if tipped.

If you are not in the market for another humidifier/vaporizer, could you move both kids into the same room temporarily?
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