This post was sponsored as part of an Influencer Activation for Influence Central and all opinions expressed in my post are my own.
Next month marks four years since my first Disney Press Trip. I traveled to LA for Thor: The Dark World and Delivery Man premieres. You’d think Vince Vaughn and Chris Pratt would be among the biggest memories of that trip.They are not. The rank second and third just behind my twins getting RSV at 10 months old.
My Twins Had RSV: What I Wish I Knew
When I boarded the plane in November 2013 my twins both had a bit of a cold starting but I didn’t realize it was worrisome, but I wish I knew. I was gone four days and when I returned began the first scariest ER trip in my life. While Charlie was still in normal cold stages, Oliver had rapidly declined. Red cheeks, trouble breathing, and a fever. They gave him a breathing treatment in the ER and ran an x-ray. An x-ray I wish no mothers have to experience…
Because he was under a year, they didn’t do a typical x-ray and I wish I knew that. I could have prepared myself for when they stood him up in a plastic see-through tube with his hands above his head. I took everything in me to hold back tears and not grab him out of the tube he was wrangling to get free from. It took all but seconds and the x-rays were done. We went back to the room and waited for confirmation that it was RSV.
Thankfully he didn’t need to stay in the hospital. The breathing treatment helped his oxygen levels and we were sent home with a breathing machine that became our best friend. Charlie never needed x-rays or breathing treatments in the ER however, they both still have trouble in the winter and need to use the machine a few times. One of the things that come along when you have RSV but it doesn’t stop them from playing in the snow!
I’m talking about this today because October is National RSV Awareness Month. A great time to educate yourself about respiratory syncytial virus, or RSV, before the “RSV season” from November to March. If you don’t know what RSV is, it’s a common, highly contagious, seasonal virus that affects nearly 100% of infants by the age of two. While many babies get a mild respiratory infection with symptoms similar to the common cold or flu, it can develop into a much more serious infection in babies born prematurely (earlier than 35 weeks gestational age).
Knowing what I know now about the signs and symptoms of RSV disease, I would never have gotten on the plane that day. While I can’t change the past or beat myself up about it, I can help inform other parents on what symptoms they should look for when it comes to RSV.
Signs & Symptoms of RSV
- Coughing or wheezing that does not stop
- Fast or troubled breathing
- Gasping for breath
- Bluish color around the mouth or fingernails
- Unusual lethargy or tiredness
- Fever (especially if it is greater than 100.4 degrees F [rectal] in infants under 3 months of age)
A breathing machine and pain relievers are the only things I used to help elevate the discomfort my twins had with RSV. The are still what we use when they have trouble in the winter. Sadly, there are no current treatment options for RSV available. Learning the signs and symptoms of RSV disease, as well as taking preventative measures are important. If you have little ones, here are some things you can do to help protect your child’s little lungs from severe RSV disease:
#1 Ask everyone to wash their hands after entering the house.
#2 Ask everyone to wash their hands before interacting with your children.
#3 Wash toys and surfaces often to help reduce the chance of exposure.
#4 Keep children away from people who may be sick, and away from large crowds.
#5 Ask your child’s pediatrician if your child may be at high risk for severe RSV disease.
#6 Learn more at LittleLungs.com