Note: “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.”
It was only a little over a year ago that we welcomed our third child–and first daughter–into our family. She was born in September, which is right at the cusp of all the cold and flu spreading. So of course, as many moms do, I worried about keeping her safe and healthy against all the germs that are out there. RSV (respiratory syncytial virus) is one of the biggest things I worried about, because although it is a mild illness for older children and adults it can be life-threatening for infants, especially those that are born prematurely. RSV is very common and is contracted by nearly all kids by the time they turn two. It occurs in epidemics each year (typically from November through March) and it is the leading cause of hospitalization for babies during their first year of life in the United States. It’s responsible for approximately 125,000 hospitalizations and up to 400 infant deaths each year.
We educated ourselves on the symptoms of RSV so we could know if a simple cold was really something more. You should contact your child’s pediatrician immediately if your child exhibits one or more of the following symptoms:
- Persistent coughing or wheezing
- Bluish color around the mouth or fingernails
- Rapid, difficult, or gasping breaths
- Fever (especially if it is over 100.4 degrees F rectally in infants under 3 months of age)
We also worked to keep our daughter away from germs as much as possible. We washed our hands like crazy and made her older brothers wash theirs a lot too (hand sanitizer was very used in our house last fall and winter!). We stayed away from people we knew had been sick, and we kept her car seat covered when we were out in public. This helped keep airborne germs away, but it also kept out prying hands that might touch her hands or face and spread germs in that way as well.
For more information on RSV, check out this helpful infographic below and also visit www.RSVprotection.com.