You have probably heard before that RSV is particularly dangerous for infants and small children, but did you know that adults can contract it as well? While it is true that the more severe infections are more common in infants, adults can still feel the effects as well.
RSV, or respiratory syncytial virus, attaches itself to the lungs and respiratory tract and can produce a wide variety of symptoms. Our AFC Urgent Care Sevierville team lays out the risks associated with RSV below!
Why Is My Infant at Risk of RSV?
Your lungs and breathing passages are full of sensitive and soft tissues. When those tissues become irritated or inflamed at the site of the infection, it can cause mild symptoms in healthy adults and more severe symptoms in babies.
The reason babies are so susceptible to severe illness is because their respiratory tracts are so little! Any amount of inflammation can cause breathing troubles, which is very dangerous. RSV can also cause bronchiolitis, which is an inflammation of the tiny airways inside a baby’s lungs. This can make the already unpleasant symptoms even worse.
How RSV Begins
- Runny nose
- Decreased appetite
- Wheezing or coughing
What Symptoms Should I Watch for With RSV?
While it is not a guarantee that your baby will get really sick if he or she contracts RSV, it is still a delicate situation. Some cases start mild and stay mild, and others can start slowly but quickly turn serious.
Any time that you notice that your baby is having trouble breathing, you should consider that a medical emergency and bring him or her in immediately. This may present like a bluish or gray pallor, rapid or shallow breathing, or chest retractions. You know your baby best, and you will notice if something starts to not look or feel right.
How to Avoid Future RSV Infections
- Cover your cough or sneeze.
- Avoid kissing your baby on the face if you are sick.
- Don’t let other people kiss your baby.
- Wash your hands often.
- Ask people to wash their hands before holding your baby.
RSV should always be taken seriously. If you are concerned about the health of your infant, come visit us right away at AFC Urgent Care Sevierville.