Cough Cough Puke, Cough Cough Puke……
It’s the time of year for streaming colds. Our school children are merrily sharing their germs with each other and still needing reminding to ‘use a tissue’ and ‘cover your mouth’ and ‘don’t sniff like that’. Oh joy.
At home, 2 precious newborns, shielded from the germs of the outside world until their older siblings come home, snot on their sleeves, dirty hands and demand kisses and cuddles with the babies. “Wash your hands’ ‘please don’t sneeze on the babies’ its relentless!
Young babies have immature immune systems and teeny bodies that are not built to deal with colds. Babies are nose breathers so feeding is not much fun and parents are flocking to invest in steamers, and chest rubs and not to mention the snot suckers…. Ewwwww.
Babies also can become breathless and get a nasty cough, which can cause them to vomit. That is what happened in our house, and multiplied by 2 meant we were in for a rough few days.
The babies contracted something called Bronchiolitis from most commonly the RSV (Respiratory syncytial virus). Because bronchiolitis is a virus it cannot be treated with antibiotics. Some babies struggle to keep any feeds down with coughing and need fluids, and sometimes-extra oxygen to help them breathe.
We’d experienced bronchiolitis in our house before so when twin one was showing symptoms I called the lovely people at 111 for advice. Twin one was not keeping feeds down due to coughing and her little chest was rising and falling quickly as she wheezed for breath. 111 sent an ambulance. Here comes Gary and his teammate to whisk us to children’s A & E. A night in hospital with various observations and checks and we were discharged home and ride out the virus with regular small feeds. Most babies recover completely with the cough hanging on sometimes for up to a few weeks. For us, baby one, passed the RSV virus to her twin and we replayed the whole affair 2 days later.
Whilst bronchiolitis is common in the winter months and very contagious it is not deemed as life threatening. However, young babies will always be treated with caution, so if you are concerned ring 111 for advice or if your baby is struggling to breathe or becomes unresponsive call 999. No one will ever tell you off for being over cautious – and in our case, Gary the Paramedic offered to come and talk at some of our first aid classes! Result!
We are at last a well house, the only reminder is a little cough from the babies and as I discovered this morning a disk of white goo on our bathroom floor – which was in fact baby puke, cooked on by our newly installed fancy pants under floor heating – seriously its welded on.
All we hope now is that we stay well for Christmas, the Elf has moved in (we checked him for germs first) and tinsel mania has begun.