RSV/Baby Etiquette Tips from MedImmune
Not too long ago I believe I shared with you my story of my 30 week Premature baby who only lived with us on this earth for a couple of days. Prematurity is very near and dear to my heart, and RSV is a prevalent risk for those tiny babies. Life as expectant parents is joyous and celebratory, but having those precious lives in our hands can be a little scary at times. In most cases babies arrive on time, healthy and ready to head home with Mom and Dad. But for the more than half a million American babies born prematurely each year, this often isn’t the case. I felt it was important to be a part of RSV/Preemie Awareness because I’ve been one of these statistics. I had a baby born at 30 weeks, and sadly for our family she wasn’t able to survive due to her many structural and congenital defects. Many parents of preterm infants are unprepared for the special medical care preemies often require. I knew ahead of time our little girl was going to have a rough time, but still, it was overwhelming. My doctors did discuss many of the issues she would be facing, so I was somewhat prepared. I don’t think anyone could really be fully prepared for the possibly loss of a loved one.
Despite recent slight declines in rates of prematurity, 1,400 babies are still born prematurely in the United States every day, and 13 million babies are affected by prematurity around the world. At birth preemies often have difficulty breathing, feeding and maintaining temperature. Preemies are often more likely to develop infections and are more susceptible to respiratory problems, due to their immature immune systems.
Nearly every baby contracts Respiratory Syncytial Virus – RSV by age two. In most full-term babies, symptoms are similar to that of the common cold, and parents may be unaware their infant has RSV. However, in the pre-term infant, these symptoms are much more severe and often require hospitalization due to the infection. Parents need to be informed about their child’s risk factors.
As parents, we need to do all we can to keep our babes healthy. We cannot control everything, but there are definitely some steps we can take to try to keep germs away from our little ones. If some of you are first-time parents, then you may not be aware of what things you can do to help.
Parents of newborns need to be cautious of who they expose their babies to. Handwashing is also very key, especially if your baby has siblings. Get those little ones washing their hands before they touch baby, but also the adults. If you are having a lot of guests come over to visit, it may be a little awkward to ask your friends to wash their hands, or to not come over if they are fighting a cold. Remember, that it is our responsibility to keep our little ones safe. If you are visiting someone with a baby, then please also take responsibility and prepare for your visit. Those tiny babes are so susceptible to germs.
MedImmune has provided these tips to remember when a loved one has a new baby:
A few tips to remember when a loved one has a new baby:
· Call before you visit. New parents need time to set up a routine and bond. By giving them time to do so before you visit, you are respecting the new family.
· Postpone a visit if you feel that you may be getting sick, have recently been ill or exposed to illness.
· Remember that parents know best. If you feel they are being overprotective or overly cautious, just consider that only they know what’s best for the health of their new son or daughter.
· Offer to do something to ease their responsibilities as they spend time as a family, such as laundry, cooking or dishes. Sleep-deprived moms and dads will appreciate your help!
If you do schedule a visit with a new baby, keep the following in mind, and take them into action:
Wash your hands frequently—upon entering the home and especially prior to holding the baby. Parents, and the new baby, will appreciate it.
· Leave toddlers at home, especially during the winter months. Young children, especially if they attend day care or preschool, often carry germs and viruses, like RSV, that are easily spread.
The best thing expectant parents can do is to be informed. Health care professionals are there to help, but parents must be the first source for infant protection.
“I wrote this review while participating in a blog tour by Mom Central Consulting on behalf of MedImmune and received promotional item to thank me for taking the time to participate.”