So what is RSV you ask?
RSV stands for Respiratory Syncytial Virus. (Yes another virus). According to WEBMD, RSV is a common, and very contagious, virus that infects the respiratory tract of most children before their second birthday. For most babies and young children, the infection causes nothing more than a cold. But for a small percentage, infection with RSV can lead to serious, sometimes life-threatening problems such as pneumonia or bronchiolitis, an inflammation of the small airways of the lungs. For More Info Click Here
This is more serious for premature babies. This is a critical season for them. I have lived through this season for three years (Pray fully this will be my last season to be severely worried about). My daughter was born at 24 weeks, she couldn’t breathe on her own, and therefore she needed all the breathing treatments: ventilator, cpap, and cannula oxygen. She was diagnosed with chronic lung disease. Due to this journey my daughter had to take, she is more prone to getting RSV. She has danced around getting RSV. How you say? Well there are symptoms to look out for.
What Are The Symptoms?
There are a few symptoms you have to watch out for. Your baby/toddler could have a common cold, could just have allergies, or could have RSV.
Some symptoms that you should watch out for is easily upset or not wanting to do much. Listening for high pitch whistles while they breathe, looking to see if your baby/toddler is having trouble breathing, if there is a slight cough with/without yellow, grey, or grey mucus. The most important symptom to LISTEN out for is whistling while they breathe, and watching to see if they are having trouble breathing. How can you see that you ask? Just watch their chest. If their chest caves in when they exhale, and it’s not so much happening when they inhale, they are having trouble. I am going to make this clear… I AM NOT A DOCTOR, A NURSE, OR A KNOW IT ALL. I am just sharing my experiences. If you have any concern, CALL YOUR CHILD’S DOCTOR!
There are ways you can avoid your child getting infected with RSV. Would you like to see? Well, here you go…
Tips for Keeping Baby/Toddler Safe
#1: Stay Inside
Try your best to stay out of the elements. If you must go out, please bundle up. Have a lot of blankets on hand to make sure they continue to stay covered. The cover that I had for my preemie worked great. She stayed warm and she was fully covered. I brought mine from Buy Buy Baby. I believe it was a reasonable price, but I wasn’t putting a price on my premature baby’s well-being.
#2: Stay Inside
I cannot stress this enough. Think of it as keeping your baby safe (which by the way is what you should be doing). Do not let your cabin fever make you put your baby at risk. Try to sign up for every delivery service possible. Someone delivers. You can check and sign up with your grocery store, your drugstore (most have delivery options now and for free), your clothes, you household essentials and nonessentials. Just try to stay in. If you need to get some air, please do it in a safe way. A fellow blogger and Vet Preemie momma gave great advice that I overlooked. Ebony Ford reminded me that if you do go out, make sure you leave your shoes at the door and make sure to disinfect all surfaces. You can also visit her site for more information about preemies as well. Just click her name.
#3: Wash your hands often
If you have been trying to stay safe from COVID, and if you spent time in the NICU, you know you have to wash your hand every second of the day. Yes, your hands will get dry. Yes, you have to moisturize, but who’s more important here? These moisturizers works great and doesn’t leave your hands greasy.
#4: Sanitize all areas
I know these times are different than normal, and I know things you once could get with a blank of an eye, you just can’t get as easily anymore. If you can search between the hours of 2am and 4 am for lysol, clorox, and microban. If you have, make sure you Lysol everything, wash all clothes, toys, and make sure you sanitize surfaces even if you feel it may be clean. There is always a way. *History Lesson* Way back when, people had to find a way to get what they needed… Keep that in mind. Taking care of a preemie is hard. It is even harder when you have other children or others that you are caring for in general. When you have down time, please just sanitize, if you haven’t done so already. Also make sure to sanitize all surfaces upon entering and thinking about it. This includes your devices as well.
#5: Writing Down Essentials
If your baby requires medical devices and reorders, make sure to write it down where you can see it. My daughter required oxygen and I had to order it once a month. I made sure I didn’t forget about the order, especially with so many doctor appts and other things to keep up with. I have a dry erase calendar and made sure it was written big and bold. Alarms and reminders will be your best friend. If you have a set schedule, you can then prepare for when the delivery comes, that way you can get it safely and you can sanitize one time.
#6: Don’t get lost in the dust
Make sure you order and buy things for yourself. Don’t loose yourself. You need attention too. Order candy, flowers, a movie, a book, even if you never read it. Just know it’s for you!
If you are a vet at RSV, you too are a newbie this year due to COVID. There are similar things you need to do to stay safe so you still got this! Just remember, automatically your baby/toddler is high risk, you have to be extra careful. Please put your child’s health before your cabin fever!
As always, I hope this helps and shined some light on a topic a lot of people are new to. As usual, I want to know what you thought about this article. Good, bad ugly or negative. Lay it on me. Thank you and be safe.