flu season.

Jessica - posted on 01/13/2011 ( 2 moms have responded )




my 5 mth old goes to a daycare while i go to work(sister - in-laws) and as of yesterday i found out that her 2 littlest ones have the flu, (vomiting, Fever.) now my daughter has an upset tummy, but isnt throwing up and doesnt have a fever yet. how long would it take for her to possible get it, what are some signs of her getting it, and is there anything i can do for it. this is our first baby and me and my husband dont no what we should do. any advise out there would help tremendously. thanks


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Laura - posted on 01/13/2011




It takes roughly a week to 10 days for the virus known as "flu" to incubate before showing symptoms. This means that if your daughter is showing signs a day after the other kids are showing signs, then she was exposed to the virus about the same time as them (perhaps even the same source), approximately a week prior. Those kids did not pass the germs. What makes the flu (and basic colds)even trickier is that people are most contageous a day or two BEFORE showing symptoms! Think back to all of the places, people and things that your daughter has been around a week or so ago and you can see why the source can be so hard to determine. The best thing to do is not worry about the "how" and "when", that will just add to the stress; just focus on care of the symptoms from here on out.

The flu symptoms are pretty much the same in babies and young children as they are for adults with one big difference--fever! Healthy adults fighting the flu may get a fever, but generally our "experienced" immune systems can keep our fevers fairly low, 100 - 101 degrees on average. A baby or young child doesn't have an "experienced" immune system, it is still learning as it were. For that fevers generally run higher in kids, 103 degrees is not uncommon. Keep a close watch on the fever; you can treat it with infant pain reliever. Most pain relievers act as fever reducers (Motrin is one), which simply helps control this symptom. Do not hesitate to seek medical attention if the fever spikes higher than 102 -103 degrees or does not seem to respond well to the medicine.

Other symptoms are vomitting, diarrhea, cough, runny nose, and aches/pains. Babies and small children can become dehydrated from the vomitting and diarrhea very quickly so it is important to try and keep them hydrated. Don't worry about food/formula--your baby won't starve in a day or two and most likely won't take it or will vomit it back up anyway. Stick with fluids like Pedialyte or diluted Gatorade/Powerade (which has most of the same ingredients as the Pedialyte, but without the artificial sweeteners or cost). Put this in a bottle and feed it to her as best you can, but only in small amounts (1 -2 oz a feeding). Wait an hour and give her another few ounces. This was the routine I used with my daughter when she was sick (I dealt with a bad case of chicken pox when she was 7 weeks old!).

Finally, if your baby does get sick, time is the only cure! Her immune system will learn and respond and the "treatment", whether it is with or without a doctor's guidence, is nothing more than managing the symptoms so she is more comfortable while sick. Sleep and fluids with some pain reliever as needed will be her best medicine. Remember, too, that antibiotics DO NOT work for viruses which is what the "flu" is--a virus. Watch for very high fevers or any symptom or reaction that is not normal--convultions, blood in vomit or stool, etc. Seek medical attention for those types of things immediately. And relax a bit--it's normal for kids to get sick! We parents don't like to see them ill, but it is a normal process of growing up. Hope this helps and good luck to you!

Karen - posted on 01/13/2011




she can get it at any point after contact and to be honest there's not much you can do about it. signs might be fussiness, fever, lack of energy, vomiting/diarrhea, no appetite...if she starts a fever give tylenol for it, if she begins vomiting or doesn't want to eat much give her pedialyte to keep hydrated (usually pedialyte is given in place of formula while in the vomiting stage - your dr or the pharmacist where you pick it up from can give you info as well). good luck and hth a bit

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