What is RSV? RSV or respiratory syncytial virus causes respiratory infections among infants and small children. Is your newborn at risk for RSV?
Most likely to occur during the winter months, RSV is characterized by cough and cold like symptoms. However, an infant who is exposed to anyone who has a cold can develop a severe infection in their lower respiratory tract. Because newborns are susceptible in the first few weeks of their being born, developing RSV can result in their having to be hospitalized.
If you notice your baby is having problems breathing; appears to be less active and listless; is not too interested in eating; take the baby to your doctor as soon as possible. Your pediatrician will prescribe medication immediately. If your doctor feels that your baby merely has a stuffy nose or cough, treatment may not be required as the [tag-tec]RSV[/tag-tec] is not severe.
In order to ensure your baby does not become infected with RSV, keep the baby away from anyone who has a cold. Since RSV affects adults as well, it is advisable to ensure that anyone who comes in contact with your baby has clean hands and, if necessary, wears a face mask to avoid transmitting any kind of infection to your baby.
Keep in mind, too, that once RSV has cleared up, it is unlikely any damage to the lungs has occurred. During the winter months, keep your child at home. Use preventative measures to ensure anyone with a cold or virus does not come in contact with your baby. While all [tag-ice]newborns[/tag-ice] are at risk for different types of infections, in addition to RSV, the rule of thumb is to wait until the baby is a few months old before venturing out.
As a mom, you may have other children attending school. Try not to take your [tag-cat]baby[/tag-cat] to a school or any other public place where germs and other factors can be a contributory factor. Keep your home relatively free of germs. As always, if any symptoms begin to appear or you have any concerns, don't hesitate to call your doctor.