Having a sick baby is rough, but having two sick babies can be unthinkable at times. The whining, crying, constant need to be held, lack of sleep can be overwhelming for even the most calm mom. As hard as you may try to keep a germ free environment, it is nearly impossible to avoid common colds and due to the close proximity to one another its nearly inevitable the other one will catch it.
First thing first, limit, or even better put a halt to visitors. Though they already have a cold, you don’t want it to worsen or spread their germs around. As we all know now, hand washing is the primary deterrent of spreading germs, so if visitors can’t be avoided, make sure they are washing their hands often and/or using an antibacterial cleanser. If you have other children, try to limit their interaction with your little one’s as well. As difficult as that may be it is necessary to keep the remainder of your household in good health. Respiratory etiquette is essential as well. Make sure everyone is covering their mouths when sneezing and coughing (this is most important for you mom as you are the primary care giver).
Next thing to do it wash all the things that your babies encounter throughout the day. It’s quite difficult to stop your little loves from sharing toys but try your best. The more items they swap, the more the germs spread and the longer you must deal with fussy babies. Wash all blankets, bedding, plush toys, bowls, spoons, sippy cups etc. Clean all the toys that cannot be placed in the washer with bleach or which ever disinfectant cleanser you use. Personally I love Clorox® wipes because of their convenience and most of all their effectiveness.
Now to the the most important piece, which is knocking out your little ones cold. The first thing I always do is call my pediatrician. Though I am an experienced mother, I’m an advocate of being safer than sorry and with there being new outbreaks of viruses you can never be too certain. Remember, your babies health provider spent a lot of time (and money) learning about keeping your babies healthy so utilize them whenever necessary.
From experience I have learned that there are some key things that you can do to cure a common cold in babies. First thing you want to do is push the liquids to your baby in the form of breast milk or Pedialyte ®. Even if your little ones are on baby or table food, most likely they wont be interested in eating. For fevers baby acetaminophen usually does the trick. Make sure you read the dosage directions on the box prior to giving it to your babies. For a stubborn fever I alternate between baby ibuprofen and acetaminophen which has proven successful.
Colds usually come with the stuffy and/or runny noses. Little Remedies ® saline solution and a GOOD bulb syringe works great for clearing out mucus. Once the mucus is out I suggest applying Vicks ® BabyRub Ointment on their chests and under their nose. It’s mild eucalyptus scent mixed with lavender and rosemary, while soothing, is specially formulated for infants.
Most times colds come with coughs. Coughing is the bodies way of ejecting mucus and most doctors don’t suggest giving cough medicine (depending on your babies age), but some relief can be given. To help your babies breathe and provide relief while sleeping, place a humidifier by their cribs. Also try propping your little loves in an up right position while sleeping. This can make breathing easier and may help them sleep longer especially if they are coughing. For older infants, I suggest Hylands Cough Syrup which is a natural medicine based on homeopathic principles and is effective. Ultimately I have found a nice warm bath, a good rub down, Vicks® BabyRub and infant acetaminophen (if necessary) along with an humidifier is the best way to relieve the symptoms of a cold.
I have learned babies are resilient creatures and usually bounce right back after a cold, but the routines you had in place don’t operate in the same fashion. You may have to slowly add food back into their diet and even help them get back on a decent sleep schedule. It may take a few days but at least the worse is over. You survived the dreaded cold!