Fall is here at last! The colors of the leaves are changing, meaningful holidays are right around the corner, the weather has cooled and football season is well underway. These are just a few things that so many savor when October is in progress. As a parent of young children, there is more to fall than football schedules and Halloween decorations. October is also when we start to see the RSV virus.
RSV is an illness that causes lung infections in babies and small children. Like the common cold, RSV can cause infection of the upper airway and lower airway, similar to that of pneumonia. This is most common with children two years of age and younger. However, children of all ages and even adults are at risk.
So, what are the signs and symptoms? As with the flu or ordinary cold, RSV includes fever, runny nose, coughing and wheezing. Your child may be infected with the virus before displaying signs, but once symptoms occur, it is important to visit the doctor right away. Even when treated, children in many instances continue to be infectious for one to three weeks after symptoms subside.
There are ways to help prevent the virus and keep it from circulating. Limit contact with contaminated surfaces. Touching a surface after someone who is infected with RSV, then touching the eyes, nose or mouth immediately spreads the virus. For children, the most common objects to attain these infectious germs include doorknobs, toys, and clothes. Cleaning these items often with the correct disinfectant will limit the spread. Most importantly, constant hand washing and alcohol-based hand cleansers will also help stop the spread of the virus.
As you delight yourself in all of the wonderful things October brings to this season, be aware of your child’s health. Remember to stay on top of disinfecting and hand hygiene. Should your child display RSV symptoms, be sure to contact your child’s physician.
McLeod Pediatrics Dillon is very pleased to welcome Dr. Joseph Wangeh alongside Dr. Yvonne Ramirez and Nurse Practitioner Stephanie Hodge. As a passionate physician and family man, Dr. Wangeh makes a strong addition to McLeod Dillon, bringing nearly twenty years of professional experience to the team. McLeod Pediatrics Dillon is the only pediatrics practice in Dillon and is known for its exceptional quality and compassionate care for children and families in the area. Dr. Wangeh is now accepting new patients. McLeod Pediatrics Dillon is located at 705 North 8th Avenue, Suite 3A, in Dillon, South Carolina, and can be reached at 843-774-6091.