***I participated in a campaign on behalf of Mom Central Consulting (#MC) for MedImmune. I received a promotional item as a thank you for participating.***
Tis the season for germs to be flying with every cough and sneeze. As a nurse who worked in pediatrics, few childhood illnesses have ever been able to scare me. I mean, literally scare me. Respiratory Syncytial Virus, commonly called RSV, had the power to scare me.
Why on earth would a common virus that affects nearly 100% of all babies by the age of two scare me? Because we’ve had a few preemies in our family (13 million babies are born prematurely every year!). Preemies and RSV don’t mix well, since the preemies lungs are underdeveloped and their immune systems are immature.
<—Mister was born at 35w5d. Although he weighed in at a whopping 8lb 8oz, the fact that he was born early increased his risk because his lungs weren’t fully matured. The fact that he was born smack dab in the middle of RSV season, which is typically November to March—though it can vary by region—made me a little neurotic. I inadvertently offended my mother-in-law shortly after his birth because I snapped when she started to pick him up without washing her hands first. Yep, I was ——> that Mom. When we went to church, I chose to babywear, so that I could keep him covered and away from germy hands. I would smile sweetly and say, “We don’t want RSV” and people would just stare at me blankly.
Nearly six years I am still amazed by how few people know what RSV is. As we enter another RSV season with a baby in the house, I wanted to brush up on my RSV facts, because if you have a child under two, you need to know about RSV! It’s serious business. RSV occurs in epidemics each year and RSV remains the leading cause of hospitalization for babies during their first year of life in the United States, with approximately 125,000 hospitalizations annually, and is the cause of up to 400 infant deaths each year. Check out this Infographic, from MedImmune, about RSV.
RSV Symptoms to watch for include:
- Persistent coughing and/or wheezing
- Bluish color around the lips, mouth, or fingernails
- Rapid, difficult, or gasping breaths
Speak to your child’s pediatrician to determine if your baby is at high risk for RSV disease, and if so, what additional steps may be recommended. For more information about RSV and prevention, visit www.RSVprotection.com. I will be taking every precaution to keep my baby healthy this season, so please don’t be offended when I hand you alcohol gel before I hand you my baby! Please remember, little ones are unable to handle big germs, so think twice before you grab a baby’s hand or touch a baby’s face this season. And remember to cover your mouth when you cough or sneeze, so you don’t spread germs and disease!
I participated in a campaign on behalf of Mom Central Consulting (#MC) for MedImmune. I received a promotional item as a thank you for participating.