Possible Causes Of Cold And Flu Symptoms
The most common causes of cold and flu symptoms in children are viral infections including:
- respiratory syncytial virus
There are several others but these are the most common. Most of the time these viruses don’t lead to serious illness.
There are some conditions which can cause cold and flu symptoms and may require further treatment, such as:
- tonsillitis in toddlers and older children
What Will Your Doctor Do
Once you bring your baby in, your doctor will:
- Take your babys vital signs, listen to them breathing, examine their ears and throat, and ask you questions about your babys symptoms and the course of the illness.
- If your doctor suspects that your baby has a more serious virus than just a common cold, they may take a nose or throat culture to identify the virus or infection that is making your baby ill.
- Though rare, if your baby is seriously illfor example, if they are severely dehydrated or are having breathing issuesyour doctor may recommend hospitalization.
- Depending on the diagnosis, your doctor may recommend medicine, such as antibiotics for bacterial infections or breathing treatments for wheezing.
- Your doctor may also suggest other-the-counter fever-reducing medicine. Always consult with your doctor about which medicines are appropriate for your baby as well as proper dosing.
When Should I See A Doctor
Most colds run their course and get better on their own. However, very occasionally children may develop complications such as an ear infection, laryngitis or croup, bronchiolitis or pneumonia.
Sometimes a child’s coughing may be due to asthma rather than a cold. If your child coughs through winter, or their coughing is brought on by exercise, or happens only at night, they may have asthma.
Seek urgent medical advice if your baby or young child has:
- a high fever
- a cough that lasts more than 3 weeks
- a rash that does not disappear if you hold a glass against it
- any worsening of the illness or increased distress
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Breastfeed Your Baby Often
Nurse, nurse, and nurse again. Breastfed babies tend to get fewer colds and recover faster with less severe symptoms. Breastmilk is chock full of powerful chemicals called antibodies. When a breastfeeding mother is exposed to a cold virus her body produces specific antibodies to the virus.
When she breastfeeds these antibodies are passed to her baby providing an immune boost to fight the virus and rid the infection quickly. Interestingly, the mother doesnt need to get sick herself. Just being close to her baby will stimulate antibody production specific to the virus her baby is dealing with.
Can Babies Get Cold Sores
It is rare for newborn babies to get a cold sore because they still have their mothers antibodies in their blood, which means that they share her immunity.
However, because the immune system of an infant under 6 months old will not yet be fully developed, if they do get a cold sore, this virus can have severe effects.
If a pregnant woman has genital herpes, the baby can get neonatal herpes through contact with fluids in the birth canal during vaginal delivery. This is the cause of almost 90 percent of neonatal cases, although babies can also contract the virus shortly after birth.
Babies can catch cold sores in two ways:
- Vertical transmission. This occurs when the mother has genital herpes, and the infant catches the virus in the birth canal. This can happen even if the mother is not experiencing any symptoms. It is also possible for the infant to catch the disease through the placenta.
- Horizontal transmission. This happens through contact after birth. People can be contagious without being aware and without visible symptoms. A kiss or a shared cup, toy, towel, or another object can all transmit the virus.
While a herpes infection is not usually harmful in older children, newborns and babies can experience complications.
When children get their first cold sore, the symptoms may be more severe and can include a fever, sore throat, and blisters that spread beyond the lips and into the mouth.
Early symptoms of herpes infection in a newborn include:
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When To Call The Doctor For Baby Cold Symptoms
For most common colds, theres no need to visit the pediatrician unless you’re concerned it might be something more serious like the flu or COVID-19. But if your baby is under 3 months old or if its your babys first cold, its a good idea to get in touch with your practitioner, if only to put your mind at ease.
Otherwise, watch for any of these signs that your little one’s illness is getting worse and be sure to call the doctor if your baby:
- Is experiencing her very first cold
- Seems to be especially out of sorts
- Is lethargic
- Refuses to eat or drink
- Develops a fever of 100.4 degrees Fahrenheit or higher on a rectal thermometer and is under 3 months old
- Has a fever of over 100.4 F and is 3 months or older .
- Has a cough thats getting worse or continues during the day after other symptoms are gone
- Breathes significantly more rapidly than usual
- Has greenish-yellow, foul-smelling nasal discharge from the nose or from coughing
- Has swollen glands in the neck
- Pulls on her ear
- Has symptoms lasting longer than 10 days
If your baby seems to have a continuous cold, a chronically runny nose or very long-lasting or frequent colds , talk to the doctor about whether allergies might be responsible .
Dress Your Baby In Layers
“If you are comfortable with a jacket on top of your clothes, you should have your baby in a jacket or snowsuit and a blanket,” says Molly Broder, M.D., a pediatrician at the Children’s Hospital at Montefiore Medical Center in the Bronx, New York. Dressing your infant in layers allows you to adjust to her needs. “The bottom layer can be snug, like leggings and a bodysuit. On top of that, you can put another layer of pants and a long sleeve shirt. Finish up with a jacket, hat, mittens, and warm booties to keep hands and feet warm,” says Dr. Broder. Choose breathable fabrics such as cotton and muslin so you can take clothes on and off as needed.
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Boost Your Babys Immunity
Vitamin D and probiotics can strengthen your babys immune system. Known as the sunshine vitamin our bodies produce it naturally with exposure to the sun. Vitamin D is vital for the immune system to function properly.
Babies can become Vitamin D deficient as we try to protect them from the sun. In places like Canada with long dark winters supplementation becomes even more important. The standard recommendation for a breastfeeding infant is 400IU daily. Its important to check with your doctor as this dose can vary based on individual factors including geography and age of your baby.
Probiotics are incredible and can help with conditions ranging from eczema to allergies to diarrhea. Over 80% of our immune systems are found in our digestive systems. This is why its vital to maintain a healthy gut in order to have a robust immune system. Giving probiotics to your baby will help ensure he has a healthy gut.
I give my little guy probiotics every day. The product we use is HMF Natogen Probiotic by Genestra. It has a great mix of the essential bacteria babies need including Bifidobacterium infantis. It comes as a powder and he loves taking it. I buy it from my naturopath but its also available online. Another brilliant product range is BioGaia available as liquid drops.
How Long Are You Contagious When You Have A Cold
coldscontagiouscoldcontagiousColdsYou can help your baby by doing the following:
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If Your Baby Is Still Coughing
Its common for babies to have a lingering cough for a while, even after their cold symptoms have subsided. Coughs may last a week and sometimes more. As long as the cough is not bothering your baby or causing any breathing difficulties, you dont need to worry.
However, if it has been more than a week and the cough is not subsiding, you should call your doctor for an evaluation.
You should call your doctor right away if:
- If your baby is having difficulty breathing along with their coughtheir chest is retracting or they are turning blueyou should take your baby to the emergency room.
- The cough has gotten worse and a fever has returned.
- Your babys cough is accompanied by wheezing.
Tips For Treating Baby’s Cold
Check with your pediatrician before giving your sniffling baby any medication, as babies should never be given adult cold medicine and most other cough and cold medications for children aren’t safe or effective either. To help relieve baby’s cold symptoms, especially during the germ-packed winter months, try these tips:
- Monitor mucus. A stuffed-up nose can be uncomfortable for your baby, making it difficult for her to breathe and for both of you to sleep. Use a suction bulb to gently extract the excess mucus. Over-the-counter saline nose drops can soften mucus before suctioning.
- Heighten humidity.Use a cool-mist humidifier in your baby’s room. Moist air can reduce congestion and make breathing easier.
- Apply moisturizing ointment. A light dab of petroleum jelly under your baby’s nose can help prevent red skin, chapping, and soreness.
- Fight back with fluids. Increase your baby’s fluid intake to replace those lost through fever or runny nose especially warm ones . Feed your baby plenty of nutritious foods, too, including those rich in vitamin C. If your baby isnt eating solids yet, keep up breastfeeding or bottles.
- Know which medications are safe to give and when. Acetaminophen is safe for babies ages 2 months and older, while ibuprofen is safe for babies 6 months and up. Always check with your doctor first before giving your child medications.
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Is It A Cold The Flu Or Covid
Most common cold viruses have mild symptoms, only present with low-grade fevers, and dont include symptoms like body aches, chills, or extreme fatigue. If your child is exhibiting signs like a high fever, body aches/chills, or extreme lethargy, you should take them to the pediatrician to rule out more serious illnesses such as the flu.
COVID-19 can also produce flu-like symptoms in children, but sometimes COVID-19 only produces mild cold-like symptoms. For this reason, doctors these days are recommending that children get tested for COVID if they are experiencing any cold-like symptoms. This can help you know whether or not your child needs to be isolated or quarantined, and if any closer contacts need to be notified.
Loosen Phlegm With Moisture
“Babies don’t have the muscle strength to cough effectively, so it can be tough for them to clear phlegm,” says Stan Spinner, M.D., chief medical officer of Texas Children’s Pediatrics in Houston. One natural remedy that can help: Take your baby into the bathroom and turn on the shower to make the air hot and steamy. “It will get his nose running, loosen the mucus in his throat, and make his coughs more productive,” says Dr. Spinner. Try doing it before bed, since mucus tends to drain into your baby’s throat and chest while they lie down.
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Why Is My Newborn Puppy Having Seizures
Seizures may be a sign of hypoglycemia in newborn puppies. This is because substantial changes in blood sugar can affect the excitability of nerve cells in the body. As well as this, your puppys brain needs glucose to function properly, but it cannot store it efficiently yet. Thus, a sudden lowering of a puppys blood sugar can cause seizures regardless of whether or not they have epilepsy, and the brain is easily affected. These seizures may involve the entire body and can include a loss of consciousness. Other clinical signs of hypoglycemia in puppies include muscle tremors, weakness, altered mentation, and lack of appetite.
With that being said, not all seizures in newborn puppies are caused by hypoglycemia. Other possibilities include neonatal encephalopathy, liver shunts, and hydrocephalus. Infections whilst in the uterus or after birth can lead to brain damage, thus causing seizures and coordination difficulties.
How Are Common Colds In Babies Treated
There is no cure for the common cold. Most colds go away on their own after about seven to 10 days and do not turn into something more serious.
Antibiotics cannot be used to treat colds. Sometimes, children may develop complications from bacteria, such as an ear infection or pneumonia, and antibiotics may then be used to treat these illnesses. Do not give the baby over-the-counter cough and cold medicines unless the doctor prescribes it.
To treat a common cold in babies:
- Keep the baby comfortable.
- Give the baby fluids. For babies 6 months or younger, let them drink breast milk or formula. At 6 months, the baby can also have some water.
- Let the baby get plenty of rest.
Since most babies cannot blow their nose until about age 4, these methods may help ease the baby’s stuffy nose:
Babies can continue their normal activities, if they seem well enough to do so. If they have fever or complications, it is best to keep them at home.
If the baby is in daycare, tell the caregiver about any symptoms that the baby has. Be sure to make a plan on who will be available to stay home with the baby if the baby is ill.
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Causes Of Colds In Newborns
Another name for a common cold is a viral, upper respiratory infection. They arent caused by bacterial infections and dont respond to antibiotics.
Your babys pediatrician may take a blood test, urine test, or an eye or skin swab to determine if your babys illness is viral or bacterial. Bacterial infections sometimes develop as complications from viral infections. They can also cause illnesses, such as:
- sore throat
- ear infections
Colds in newborns arent unusual. The viruses which cause them can live in the air and on hard surfaces for short periods of time. That makes it possible for transmission to occur with or without direct contact to someone whos sick.
Babies who are around older children may be more likely to get colds. But even a trip to the pediatricians office, a cuddle with a loving adult, or a stroll to the store can expose your baby to germs.
Breastfed babies have more immunity than babies exclusively fed formula. This is because breastfeeding supplies antibodies, white blood cells, and enzymes to your baby. These agents safeguard them from infection.
Breastfed babies have all, or part, of their mothers immunity to the illnesses she has had or been exposed to. This doesnt, however, mean breastfed babies are completely immune from colds.