Our little guy came down with something recently. We are not really sure what it was. He was tested for the flu, but it came back negative. There has been a virus going around, so we are guessing that was the culprit. Regardless, this was the first time he has been sick enough for me to consider taking him to the clinic.
Since it was our first sick baby there were some things that we were not 100% prepared for. I hope you can learn a little from our journey and that the information can take a little stress out of the next time your baby gets sick.
Have a good thermometer
We don’t have a good thermometer. At present, all I know for sure is if he feels significantly warmer than me. We have a thermometer that seems to give a semi decent rectal temp, but I long to have one of these bad boys. It is what the nurse used when we went into the clinic and it was way less of a hassle to use. I would feel much more at ease knowing if my little guy for sure did or did not have a fever. If I knew this information I could feel more confident in my decision of whether to take my sick baby into the clinic.
Fortunately, we had already stocked up on baby Tylenol, preparing for the worst outcome from his two month appointment. Another thing to keep in mind: even if you have the Tylenol, you also need the syringe for measuring the correct dosage. We had a syringe that came with an infant care kit, but the measurement markings rubbed off, so it is basically worthless.
On top of having the items on hand, you need to know the correct dosage. Our pediatrician gives us a sheet where he writes how much Tylenol to give him at every appointment, so for me the most important thing is making sure that sheet is somewhere accessible. If your baby’s doctor does not do this already, you may need to ask for the correct dosage to be written down for future reference. I feel much more comfortable giving my sick baby a dose of medicine directed by my doctor and not just some internet site.
Motrin – our experience
This was huge for us. We gave the little one Motrin before bed a couple nights since he would be able to go for longer stretches between doses and we really enjoy sleeping. This plan really backfired on us. Giving our baby Motrin was like giving him baby crack. Seriously, before we gave it to him he was almost falling asleep in his high chair. After the Motrin he refused to fall asleep nursing like usual. We tried for an hour. When we gave up on that, I put him in his crib and he laid there and talked to himself for another hour. After he eventually fell asleep, we tried to do the same, but he was up again in a half hour.
He had a hard time with the Motrin another night we gave it to him, so we Googled it and found out that this is not uncommon. The issue is evidently a dye that they use. It is a big enough issue that they sell Motrin without dye. It is more expensive, but in my opinion worth it.
This is just what happened to us and the regular Motrin may not have the same affect on your sick baby. My suggestion would be to try it sometime you are not really needing your baby to sleep.
Keep soft tissues stocked up
I cannot count the number of times I have wiped my little guys nose today, let alone when it was at its peak of snot flowing. It is never ending. After a day or two his nose started to get really red and sad. I wiped petroleum jelly on it before naps and bedtime, which helped, but constantly wiping it continued. I’d really suggest having boxes of tissues (ideally with lotion or something in them) ready to be distributed to any place you spend time with baby in your house. I had one box (of not so soft tissues) that I felt like I had to drag all over the house just to keep up with his nose.
Keep up your own health
My husband came down with whatever virus got our baby sick. It is sweeping the area, so it is no surprise. I didn’t catch it and I really cannot imagine feeling super awful all day while having to take care of a fussy baby. Sounds miserable. Don’t sign me up for that. I have been doing what I can to stay healthy and it seems to be doing the trick. I’ve been taking small extra precautions like washing my hands more, being more diligent about taking my prenatal (since I am still breastfeeding and the extra goodness really can’t hurt), taking Airborne (these are delicious!), and drinking an apple cider vinegar cocktail a couple times a day.
I have tried doing apple cider vinegar before and it was terrible, but this cocktail I have been doing has made it tolerable. I mix about a half cup of orange juice or pineapple juice with two teaspoons of apple cider vinegar (with the mother) and 1 teaspoon of honey. It really makes the flavor of the vinegar way more tolerable. There are tons of health benefits of drinking apple cider vinegar, so I am going to try to soak them all up!
Having a sick baby can be a stressful time. There are steps you can take to be prepared for the inevitable. With babies putting everything in their mouths, it is generally not a question of if, but when. Being prepared can make all the difference and allow you to put your focus on helping soothe your baby rather than rushing out to grab the thing you need or suffering along with them.
* I am not a doctor, nor do I pretend to be. If you want to start anything new and you have questions, consult with your doctor. Don’t do anything that will not work for you or your baby.
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