RSV is a very serious and scary issues that can affect anyone.
You see that little face right there on the left? That was me when I was several months old. I was lucky to grow into a healthy baby because I started life out 2 months earlier than I should have. I was a preemie, born right around the 32 week mark. I was lucky to make it that far, because my mom actually had her water break in June. They had to keep me in my safe little home as long as they could. Finally July 31 I came into this world 2 months early.
Being an early arrival, put me at an even great risk for infections and diseases. It was imperative that I get the treatment needed to form my lungs and mature more to go home. Once home, it was even more important for friends and family to make sure they were as germ free as possible to keep my little immune system in tip top shape. I, myself, was never the parent of a preemie but being a preemie I knew it was so important for everyone around me to be germ free around my kids to protect them from virus’ that can be extremely harmful to their little bodies.
One virus, in particular, that parents should know about is respiratory syncytial virus, commonly known as RSV. RSV is contracted by nearly all children by the age of two, often causing symptoms that mimic the common cold. However, preemies are most at risk for developing much more serious symptoms, including a serious respiratory infection (severe RSV disease) from the virus, because their lungs are underdeveloped and they don’t have the antibodies needed to fight off infection.
Preemie awareness day was November 17 and to help bring awareness here is a little more information about RSV:
- RSV is the leading cause of infant hospitalization, and severe RSV disease causes up to 10 times as many infant deaths each year as the flu.
- RSV is most prevalent during the winter months. The CDC has defined the “RSV season” as beginning in November and lasting through March for most parts of North America.
- In addition to prematurity, common risk factors include low birth weight, certain lung or heart diseases, a family history of asthma and frequent contact with other children.
RSV is VERY contagious, as there is no cure, we have to do our part to help prevent the spread of this to preemies and infants. Here are a few tips:
- Ensure you, your family, and any visitors in your home wash their hands or use hand sanitizer
- Speak with your child’s doctor if he or she may be at high risk for RSV, as a preventive therapy may be available.
- Say No! It’s okay to tell friends/family you are not comfortable with having visitors. Your child’s safety is priority.
Check out this infographic with a few other tips on RSV prevention. It also gives symptoms to look for so you know when to get your child to the doctor.
RSV is a very serious issue, so we as parents, friends, or extended family, must do our part to help prevent it!
**I wrote this review while participating in a campaign for Mom Central Consulting on behalf of MedImmune and I received a promotional item to thank me for my participation.**