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RSV in infants

We all know that the flu season is especially difficult this season, but there's another virus that mamas should be aware of. Respiratory Syncytial Virus, or RSV, is a respiratory cold virus, causing discomfort to the nose, throat and lungs. In adults, RSV symptoms are mild and resemble the common cold, but each year in the U.S., an estimated 57,000 children younger than 5 years old are hospitalized due to RSV infection, and the numbers are growing.

But, don't fret mama. Here's what you should know about RSV and how you can protect your little one:

What exactly is RSV?

RSV is a virus that causes colds and upper and lower respiratory infections.

RSV is most dangerous for babies under 12 weeks of age or who were born prematurely, have chronic lung disease, certain heart defects or weakened immune systems due to illness or medical treatments.

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Like the flu, RSV season occurs each year in most regions of the U.S and is highly contagious.

RSV is highest during fall, winter and spring seasons.

What are the symptoms?

Patients with RSV often have cough and congestion, but can also experience labored breathing and wheezing. In outpatient pediatrician offices, we diagnose RSV infections primarily by performing a physical exam. We can test for RSV using a small nasal swab as well.

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), RSV may not be severe when it first starts. However, it can become more severe a few days into the illness. Early symptoms of RSV may include:

  • Runny nose
  • Decrease in appetite
  • Cough, which may progress to wheezing

In very young infants (younger than 6 months old), the only symptoms of RSV infection may be:

  • Irritability
  • Decreased activity
  • Decreased appetite
  • Apnea (pauses while breathing)

How can mamas care for kids with RSV?

Unfortunately, RSV is a virus so it doesn't respond to antibiotics. Instead, gently suctioning snot from the nose after administering nasal saline spray, using a cool-mist humidifier, and focusing on hydration are the most important ways parents can care for their kids after an RSV diagnosis.

In an extreme case, sometimes, patients will have so much difficulty with RSV that they require oxygen to help with breathing or an IV to assure they get enough liquids. Though hospitalization is not the norm, it can happen.

RSV is preventable:

If you have contact with an infant or young child, take extra steps to keep the infant healthy by taking proper precautions:

  • Wash your hands frequently
    According to the CDC, adults should wash hands often with soap and water for 20 seconds, and help young children do the same. If soap and water are not available, use an alcohol-based hand sanitizer.
  • Cover your coughs + sneezes
    Cover your mouth and nose with a tissue or your upper shirt sleeve when coughing or sneezing. It's also good practice to avoid touching your eyes, nose and mouth with unwashed hands.
  • Disinfect surfaces
    Clean and disinfect surfaces and objects children frequently touch, such as toys and doorknobs. When people infected with RSV touch surfaces and objects, they can leave behind germs.
  • Stay home when you are sick
    It's pretty obvious but very important. If possible, stay home from work, school and public areas when you are sick


Every week, we stock the Motherly Shop with innovative and fresh products from brands we feel good about. We want to be certain you don't miss anything, so to keep you in the loop, we're providing a cheat sheet.

So, what's new this week?

Tenth & Pine: Gender-neutral and butter-soft basics for littles + bigs

In 2016, after a stage four endometriosis diagnosis and a 10 year battle with infertility, Tenth & Pine founder Kerynn got her miracle baby, Ezra Jade. As a SAHM with a Masters in Business, she wanted to create a brand that focused on premium quality, function, comfort, and simplicity.

She sought out premium, all natural fabrics and factories that shared her core values, practicing environmentally friendly manufacturing methods with fair and safe working conditions for employees. As a result, her made in the USA, gender-neutral designs check all the boxes. The sustainable, organic basics are perfect for everyday wear, family photos and any adventure in between.

Lucy Lue Organics: Sustainably and ethically-produced modern baby clothes

This family-owned and operated business was started by a mama who wanted out of corporate America after the birth of her son. Thoughtfully designed to mix-and-match, Lucy Lue's sustainably and ethically produced collection of modern organic baby clothes only uses fabrics that are "environmentally friendly from seed to seam." Their gorgeous, earthy tones and comfy, minimalist styles make the perfect addition to first wardrobes from birth through the first years.

Sontakey: Simple bracelets that speak your mind

Sontakey has been such a hit in the Motherly Shop that we knew it was time to expand the line. And since these beautiful mantra bands look so stunning stacked, more options = more fun.

Not sure where to start? Here's what we're adding to our cart:

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Sorry, you can’t meet our baby yet

Thank you for understanding. ❤️

In just over three weeks, we will become parents. From then on, our hearts will live outside of our bodies. We will finally understand what everyone tells you about bringing a child into the world.

Lately, the range of emotions and hormones has left me feeling nothing short of my new favorite mom word, "hormotional." I'm sure that's normal though, and something most people start to feel as everything suddenly becomes real.

Our bags are mostly packed, diaper bag ready, and birth plan in place. Now it's essentially a waiting game. We're finishing up our online childbirth classes which I must say are quite informational and sometimes entertaining. But in between the waiting and the classes, we've had to think about how we're going to handle life after baby's birth.

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I don't mean thinking and planning about the lack of sleep, feeding schedule, or just the overall changes a new baby is going to bring. I'm talking about how we're going to handle excited family members and friends who've waited just as long as we have to meet our child. That sentence sounds so bizarre, right? How we're going to handle family and friends? That sentence shouldn't even have to exist.

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Chrissy Teigen/Instagram

When Chrissy Teigen announced her third pregnancy earlier this year we were so happy for her and now our hearts are with her as she is going through a pain that is unimaginable for many, but one that so many other mothers know.

Halfway through a high-risk pregnancy complicated by placenta issues, Teigen announced late Wednesday that she has suffered a pregnancy loss.

Our deepest condolences go out to Chrissy and her husband, John Legend (who has been by her side in the hospital for several days now).

In a social media post, Teigen explained she named this baby Jack.

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"We are shocked and in the kind of deep pain you only hear about, the kind of pain we've never felt before. We were never able to stop the bleeding and give our baby the fluids he needed, despite bags and bags of blood transfusions. It just wasn't enough," she wrote.

She continued: "We never decide on our babies' names until the last possible moment after they're born, just before we leave the hospital. But we, for some reason, had started to call this little guy in my belly Jack. So he will always be Jack to us. Jack worked so hard to be a part of our little family, and he will be, forever."

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