When it comes to taking care of our children we always want the best for them. When you are a parent of a preemie you can become obsessed with trying to keep your little ones safe. RSV (Respiratory Syncytial Virus) can be very serious. This virus has most of the symptoms of the common cold. And while in adults and older children, it acts in much the same way. However RSV to an infant or worse a preemie with lungs that are already weak from being born early can cause serious damage and in some cases even death.
A quote from the National Perinatal Association (NPA) states that nearly half of the parents of preemies are unaware of the preventative medicine that is available. As a parent of former micro preemies I am here to tell you that if you want to know best how to take precautions and protect your preemie you need to be informed. There are numerous resources to help you with that. One of my favorite books on preemie health issues is Preemies: The Essential Guide for Parents of Premature Babies . Also there are blogs and news articles galore.
There are things that you can do to help prevent RSV and protect your preemie. Some of the following are just a short list of sort of the top 5 things
- Wash your hands and make sure that others that touch your little one do the same
- Clean baby toys and wash bedding often
- Keep anyone with a runny nose or cough away from your little one
- Never let anyone smoke around your baby (smoker’s lungs are weakened and they are more likely to have a spread RSV)
- Avoid crowded areas and day care whenever possible
These top five are the basic things that should help you to avoid RSV, for more ideas check out this blog .
RSV season is in effect from mostly November to April depending on the area of the country you live in. Check with your pediatrician for more information on your specific area. Always remember to cover your little one and never let a stranger touch them. You may feel weird about telling some one “sorry no you can not see her” or “please don’t touch him”. It may seem rude to strangers, but it is for your little ones health.
Things that you should keep in mind this season is that if the worse does happen and your baby starts to appear sick or not feeling well do not hesitate to take them to their doctor or to the ER. Symptoms that you should watch for are is persistent cough, wheezing, trouble breathing, throwing up or not wanting to eat, and fever. These could be signs of RSV or several other nasty things. And when it comes to your preemies health, it is better to always air on the side of caution.