During the winter months there is always an extra worry about RSV. RSV is a dangerous virus that individuals can get that is especially worrisome for infants and young children. This is why it is very important that parents take extra precautions to make sure that they are protecting their children from RSV. Here are a couple things you need to know about the virus.
What Is RSV?
RSV stands for respiratory syncytial virus. This is a virus that starts out as nothing more than a common cold but then spreads to the lungs and compromises the child's health. It can become bronchitis or even pneumonia. RSV is most dangerous for young infants who do not have developed immune systems or children who already have weak lungs and/or a weak heart.
How Do You Get RSV?
RSV is passed just like a cold is. You can catch it by coming in contact with surfaces that are unclean or other people who have the virus. Saliva is a sure way to spread the virus, so by sneezing, kissing, sharing a straw etc., you can easily contract the illness.
What Is The Treatment For RSV?
The reason RSV is so severe and dangerous is because there really is no cure. The body has to fight the infection completely on it's own. If it were a bacterial infection, an antibiotic would help to fight the disease, but antibiotics do not affect viruses. That means that all you can do for the child is help them get enough rest so that their immune system jumps into action.
This is why it is important that you give the child plenty to drink to keep them hydrated. Rest is also essential to the equation, so make sure the child is not overexerting themselves. You should also be cleaning the nose of mucus, especially young babies who cannot blow their nose. You can also give acetaminophen to help combat a fever and relieve discomfort.
How Do You Prevent RSV?
The best way to prevent RSV is to keep your young baby away from crowds. Try to avoid allowing people to hold the child, and if they do, make sure they wash their hands first. Avoid kissing the baby around the face and sneezing or coughing around the child. Many professionals recommend keeping a child away from crowds for the first couple months of life. This will protect them from the virus.
For more information, contact a business such as Valley Medical Care.