RSV: Learn the Signs and Symptoms

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This post was sponsored as part of an Influencer Activation for Influence Central and all opinions expressed in my post are my own.

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As fall creeps along here in Western NY, I’ve gotten hit with my yearly fall cold – happens every year like clock work.  It’s always a great reminder to get my flu shot, because flu season is right around the corner.  In addition to flu season, as parents, it’s important to remember that it is also RSV season! You may not have heard of RSV – it doesn’t get the same amount of media time as the flu, which is why I’m excited to bring you some info today about RSV from Little Lungs during National RSV Awareness Month before the season really gets going.  RSV season is November through March.  RSV is a common and highly contagious virus that affects almost 100% of infants before the age of two.   

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I first learned about RSV when my daughter was pretty young.  I’m pretty sure that my daughter contracted her case of RSV at daycare; it’s often spread in epidemics during RSV season. RSV is common, and often it resembles the cold or flu, but in some babies, particularly premature babies born earlier than 35 weeks, it can be a much more serious infections.  Signs and symptoms of a severe case of RSV can include coughing or wheezing that does not stop, fast or troubled breathing; gasping for breath, a bluish color around the mouth or fingernails, unusual lethargy or tiredness, or a fever (especially if it is greater than 100.4 degrees F [rectal] in infants under 3 months of age).  While my daughter was not premature, she has had asthma and breathing issues since she was very young, and she did get RSV.  And while there is no cure for RSV, we were able to get her some help breathing to alleviate some of the symptoms after a visit to the pediatrician.  It can be a scary thing for parents so it’s important to know the signs and symptoms so you can get your little one to the doctor.   There’s been few things in the world that have been more difficult than watching my baby struggle to breathe.  Knowing the signs and symptoms can arm parents of newborns and toddlers with the information they need to seek medical attention.    

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Protecting our kids from sickness is never easy.  As with many viruses this time of year, I try to adopt the prevention is the best medicine approach.  We use a lot of organic disinfectants, and I encourage my kids to wash their hands throughout the day, and not touch their face.  Like with many viruses, RSV is highly contagious, and while my girls are older and aren’t at risk for RSV, they can carry it.  Plus, washing hands is a great way to prevent spreading illnesses in any case.  I also encourage my girls not to rub their face, eyes, or nose without washing their hands first.   If you have very young children at risk for RSV, ask everyone to wash their hands before coming in the house or interacting with children.  Washing toys and surfaces frequently is important, as is keeping children away from sick people and large crowds – especially if your child is at high risk.  If you aren’t sure if your child is at high risk, definitely talk to your pediatrician!

Check out this amazing infographic from Little Lungs with tons of information for you to help keep your little one protected this RSV season.  

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Make sure that you talk to your pediatrician about RSV, and get educated at LittleLungs.com!  Parents, comment and let us know if you have any experiences with RSV to share.

 

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