Monday, May 23, 2011

42nd Mommy Mondays

I wanted to share with you our experiences with having croup and RSV in our home the past 3 weeks. It's a lot to read, but hopefully it can be informative. It has been tough dealing with such scary sicknesses in our young children all while I'm still recovering from having my baby and my husband being a little sick with a sore throat.

Croup
Three weeks ago, my husband and I woke up to scary noise this morning - the sound of our son "choking" coughing. It sounded like something was stuck in his throat. I pounded his back just in case and my husband got him to calm down so he would stop crying and coughing. We call his doctor's office. She said we could take him to the emergency room or wait to get an appt. We decided to wait since my husband got him to calm down. I called back when they were "open" to get an appt. We got the first appointment of 8:40am. What a long 2 hours to wait for that appt. My husband looked stuff up online, and we think it's croup....great!
We all pack up and go since I had my doctor appt. at 9am too. Our son got in pretty quickly so I was able to talk to the nurse too since my husband feels like he doesn't know what to say. The nurse think it's croup too and gives us ideas to help: steamy showers and then sitting outside wrapped up. I then take baby girl to my appt. while my husband waits to talk to the doctor. Yup Croup....
We then went to Walgreens to pick up a prescription for our son. We didn't have to get it, but figured anything to help us through the week, we'd try. They gave hims a cough depressant with some codeine in it to help him sleep. We gave some to him right before nap and got him to go to sleep. We didn't hear what we heard early this morning, but you could tell he sounded congested or something while he slept.
Before bedtime, my husband took a shower with him. Then we wrapped him up with a blanket and hat and my husband sat with him outside for a few minutes. We then gave him another dose of medicine before bed.
My husband slept in the room with our son. I woke up at least 3-5x to check to see if he was still breathing. A couple times, he woke up "barking" again. My husband and I both sat with him for a while. I tried not to cry since he sounded so bad. My husband had to yell at James to get him to calm down so that he would stop coughing. My husband then explained to him why he had to stop crying and then soothed him back to sleep.
What a great way to start off my 2nd week being along....a lot more tears and wishing family was around to help us.
I later learned from a friend that with croup, their throat swells up and they could turn blue and stop breathing..it happened to her sister several times when she was little. Scary! Luckily that never happened with James, but that sure made us more worried. He sounded perfectly fine during the day, but when he was asleep he sounded bad and then at night it was worse! Luckily it went away after about 4 days. We did our best to keep our son away from our newborn too - her doctor said she should be okay since she was nursing and there wasn't much we could do because she was already exposed.

RSV
A little over 2 weeks ago on a Friday night, my baby girl started having a little bit of a stuffy nose. By Sunday, she was starting to sound really bad, and we couldn't get anything out with the nose sucker/bulb syringe....thinking maybe it was because her nose is too tiny.

On Monday, I decided to call the doctor's office to ask for any tips to help get stuff out of her nose. If we hadn't switched to the family doctor and were still with the pediatricians, I wouldn't have called them because the pediatricians make me feel like I can only call in dire emergencies. With the family doctor, I didn't feel dumb for calling about a stuffed up nose. Well a nurse called me back and I asked about what tricks to help my baby girl, and she just said bring her in just in case it's RSV. Not what I expected to hear, but glad that I didn't have to fight to get an appointment. I took her at 4:15. The nurse shows me some tricks to get her nose cleared up. Use saline drops or water in her nose. Wait a little and suck it out with the bulb syringe.  The nurse then took a snot sample to test it for RSV. The doctor then checked her out. He also said I could use a wet Q-tip and showed me how to stick it in. He said her lungs sounded good. The nurse comes back in saying she is positive for RSV. I just took a deep breath, trying not cry there. The doctor said he wouldn't have guessed she had RSV because her lungs sounded good. He then tells me signs to look for to bring her to the hospital. So if she sounds like she's panting, call him and then we could take her to the hospital to get oxygen, and they'd watch her and clean our her nose. He said that days 2-3 were the worse so technically we should have been through it already since she's been stuffed up since Friday night. He said he couldn't give her any medicine that he usually gives for RSV since she's so little still. Then just to call him if I had any questions or concerns. I left and of course started bawling, driving while trying to soothe baby with a pacifier. (We started giving her a pacifier Sunday because it seemed to help her focus and stay calm so she could breathe a little better).

she now uses a Nuk pacifier which she seems to keep in better

I kept thinking how did she get this. She hasn't been to church or play group. Wal-mart? My older son and I going to church? My husband being sick with sore throat, etc? I feel like I'm to blame. Then I try to think from Heavenly Father's perspective. We must be pretty strong parents to receive the trial of my son having croup last week and now baby girl having RSV...right. Trying not to think about what others will think - like she should have stayed home....she must have brought her out a lot, etc. She wasn't even 3 weeks old yet.

A couple days after her first appointment, she sounded worse and was holding her breath a lot more when she was asleep or when she started crying. We took her in again. the doctor gave us a nebulizer with a prescription for albuterol. That really helped to get more stuff out of her.



We used that for a couple days, but then she one day she wouldn't go to sleep from 10pm to 5am and her breathing sounded accelerated as if she was hyperventilating. We ended up calling her doctor at 4am and he said that we shouldn't worry because she was awake...if she'd been sleepy and sounded like that then we should bring her in. Later my friend with Cystic Fibrosis explained that the albuterol sometimes makes you feel like that....so scary when you hear it in a baby! For now we've stopped the breathing treatments and if she starts sounding bad again, we'll give it to her during the day. She had 3 nights where she didn't sleep for 5+ hours.
Also we heard that our city (20,000 people) had the 2nd amount or largest cases of RSV this year.

Our baby girl is now a month old. She still has RSV which basically is a really bad cold, but with new babies, it's serious because they can't get the stuff out. She's not stuffed up anymore, but still has some congestion in her and just coughs badly time to time trying to get stuff out so much easier to deal with. We had to work a lot to get snot out of her nose. You never thought you'd be so excited to see so much snot, but we were when we got a lot out of her nose.

I designed her onesie and printed it using Iron-on Transfer Paper.

Overall though, we're doing a lot better in our home. I was getting pretty depressed with everything, but one my baby got RSV that depression went away. Not sure why it didn't go away when my son got croup...maybe because my baby was so new, it was a lot scarier having her sick.
Now that our baby girl is better, our son has been able to get close to her now. He seems much more at ease to be around her and touch her now. Before he'd just watch and look at her. He's such a big helper: giving her a pacifier, telling me when she was crying, talking to her, etc. I love watching them interact!


Me with my beautiful children
My hair is extra messy since my son likes to play with it...

3 crafty contributions:

Jessica said...

I think you are right hun, God wouldn't give those kinds of trials to you if he didn't believe you could handle it. You are a great mom and don't let the silly pediatrician's office make you feel any different.
Cute pics and I love the outfit with the flower headband.
Smilez,
Jessica

christa @ enSTYLEpedia said...

oh my goodness, what a rough few weeks you've had. don't worry about what others will think, babies get RSV sometimes and you are not the first or the last mommy whose baby has RSV. You're doing a great job, the transition from 1 to 2 kids is a rough one but it just gets easier and easier.

Sarah said...

So sorry to hear about you kids being sick! That is one of the hardest things to deal with!!

My Megan was in the hospital with pnemonia a couple weeks ago and it was scary having her on an IV and on oxygen.

Hope things get back to normal very soon. Your little girl looks adorable in her one month oufit! :)


Sweet photo of your kids together. A nice reminder of how precious your kids are & how even trials are worth it in the long run!

Hugs!!