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.
RSV is such a scary issue. I have had a few friends who had premature babies that went through RSV. I remember the scary moments, my friends excperienced. There is nothing worse than feeling helpless as a parent and with RSV that is what happens. Did you know each year, worldwide, 13 million babies are born prematurely and more than 1 million preemies have died just this year from serious health challenges. That is a heart breaking number, one infant death is one too many in my opinion.
The U.S. has a 12.2% rate of premature babies, which is one of the highest in the world. Rates of preemie babies have risen by 36% over the last 25 years. Unfortunately, even with the rise, 75% of parents don’t know the the definition of prematurity, which is if a baby is born at or before 37 weeks gestation. It’s so important to stay informed so you can be prepared IF you end up being one of the statics mentioned here.
All babies need to be watched carefully, but preemies usually have specialized health needs. We need to raise awareness so more people understand the risks that can come with premature births. November 17 is world prematurity day, we all need to remember and stay informed. One of the things we can do is check out RSVProtection.com to remind ourselves about the one seasonal virus that poses a risk to infants (both premature and full term). That virus is RSV.
Respiratory syncytial virus (RSV) is a common seasonal virus, most children contract it and by the age of 2. It can be mistaken for a cold becuase of the mild to moderate cold-like symptoms in healthy, full-term babies. It is more likely to root in premature lungs, where developing airways are narrowed. Preterm babies carry fewer virus-fighting antibodies—which makes them even more susceptible.
Know The Facts:
- RSV occurs in epidemics each year, typically from November through March, though it can vary by geography and year-to-year
- RSV disease is the leading cause of hospitalization for babies during their first year of life in the United States, with approximately 125,000 hospitalizations and up to 400 infant deaths each year
- RSV disease is responsible for one of every 13 pediatrician visits and one of every 38 trips to the ER in children under the age of five
- Despite being so common, many parents aren’t aware of RSV; in fact, one-third of mothers have never heard of the virus
Learn The 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°F (rectal) in infants under 3 months of age]
- Contact your doctor if your child even has one of these symptoms
- Wash Hands, EVERYONE who will be around babies should do this.
- Keep toys, clothes, blanket and sheets clean
- Avoid crowds and other young children during RSV season
- Never let anyone smoke around your baby
- Steer clear of people who are sick or who have recently been sick
RSV is very contagious and can be spread easily through touching, sneezing and coughing. Additionally, the virus can live on the skin and surfaces for hours. There is no treatment for RSV disease once it’s contracted, so prevention is critical. Be sure to take the proper precautions and know it’s okay to keep everyone away from your baby. Who cares if someone gets mad, it’s your child’s health, and that comes before any visitation or baby handling!
Have you ever had to deal with RSV in your child??