This post was sponsored by AstraZeneca as part of an Influencer Activation for Influence Central and all opinions expressed in my post are my own.  #LittleLungs #RSVAwarenessMonth

There are a lot of things to learn when you become a parent for the first time. Like how to get your child to sleep through the night, what soothes her when you’re on your last nerve, and how to fit her needs into your already too busy life. But one of the most important things new parents need to know about is one many won’t likely discover until the find their infant with a fever and then they’ll suddenly realize their child’s well-being is in their hands. If they’re prepared for their child’s illness, they can save themselves a lot of worry and heartache, so learning ahead of time about some of the most common childhood diseases your infant is likely to experience is a must.

One such disease is RSV and since October is National RSV Awareness Month it’s a great time to share some excellent resources for parents. But first let me tell you a little more about this common, seasonal virus that normally strikes between November and March here in the US. It’s so common that most children will contract it before their 2nd birthday. But sadly, many of these infants will require hospitalization to recover. In fact, RSV is the leading cause of hospitalization in a baby’s first year of

Children without complications usually recover in 7-14 days. But what makes RSV so different is that a child can continue  to spread the virus for up to three weeks after recovery. That’s one of the properties that makes RSV so different. Most people assume once a fever is gone, the child is no longer contagious, but with RSV, that’s simply not the truth.

Preventative Measures to Avoid Contracting RSV

Beyond keeping your child away from those who are or have been sick with RSV, what else can you do to keep your child safe? Handwashing is the number one way to prevent the virus from being passed from one person to another. Wash your hands before and after attending to your child’s needs and ask friends and family to do so as well. Wash toys and bedding at least once a week or at the first sign of soiling. Also, keep your child away from crowds and cigarette smoke.

Don’t be afraid to ask visitors to adhere to your standards,  you’re the one who’ll have to deal with an ill child long after they’ve gone home.

Signs and Symptoms of RSV

Also, watch for signs of a RSV infection in your child and have your child seen if you notice the following symptoms: difficulty breathing, a high fever, a thick discharge from the nose, a cough that produces green, yellow, or gray mucus, unusual irritability or inactivity, and refusal to bottle or breastfeed.

Get more in-depth information on how to detect, prevent, and what to look for in treatment should your child contract RSV. Visit RSV: Get the facts to help protect your baby (http://bit.ly/2bvRxSm).

Cautious but not Crazy

This will be my first winter as a mother. You can be sure I’ll be putting some of these preventative measures in place. But I also know that sometimes even after taking every precaution, my sweet little girl could get sick. But with the information and tools provided, I’ll be able to remain calm and confident that I can handle whatever this winter throws at us. Plus, proper preparation will save me from going crazy with worry.

RSV Infographic

A baby’s lungs are so fragile and so it’s important to keep it protected from winter’s biggest threat. Check out the RSV infographic below  for more facts about keeping your child healthy and safe.

RSV Awareness Month Infographic #LittleLungs #IC #ad #RSVAwarenessMonth