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A primer on first year ailments

It’s inevitable. Just like the many other “firsts” of your child’s life, the first time your little one gets sick will likely be a moment he’ll never remember and you’ll never forget. The best way to get through the initial sick day with your sanity intact is to be prepared and remain calm. After all,...

It’s inevitable. Just like the many other “firsts” of your child’s life, the first time your little one gets sick will likely be a moment he’ll never remember and you’ll never forget. The best way to get through the initial sick day with your sanity intact is to be prepared and remain calm. After all, like most every other “first,” it probably won’t be the last. With the help of Zak Zarbock, MD, one of the country’s top pediatricians and founder of Zarbee’s, a line of all natural cough and cold remedies for children, you’ll be ready to face even the most ferocious of fevers in no time.baby_medicine
Congestion
Dr. Zarbock explains …
“When babies have colds, their noses can get very stuffy. Because they prefer to breathe through their noses, this can be problematic.”
Mama, MD: Yep, it’s 2012 and there’s still no cure for the common cold. (Seriously, what have those scientists been doing all these years?) Plus, unfortunately for babies, no over-the-counter cold medicine has been approved for use by children under the age of 12 months. However, according to Zarbock, you can help to stop the sniffles by using saline drops to thin out mucus and a bulb syringe to clean out the nose. You can also use a vaporizer in the nursery to moisten the air, though in Zarbock’s opinion, “This provides relatively minimal benefit.”
Consult a professional: If your infant is showing any signs of rapid, labored or difficulty breathing, see a doctor immediately.
Colic
Dr. Zarbock explains …
“Crying for no apparent purpose is not only difficult to understand and manage, but may be very trying for a sleep-deprived parent as well.”
Mama, MD: Most parents of newborns will do just about anything to get their babies back to sleep in the middle of the night. But when said baby has colic, defined by uncontrollable fussiness, this seemingly simple task suddenly becomes mission impossible. Zarbock’s recommendation? A nice tight swaddle along with white noise or shushing and gentle motion like walking with a bounce or swinging. You will probably find no shortage of advice from others on how to help your colicky baby, but truthfully, the best thing you can do for him is to practice your own patience and do whatever it takes to remain calm. Put baby in a safe place and leave the room for a quick breather if necessary, and embrace the mantra, “This too shall pass.”
Consult a professional: If a child seems utterly inconsolable, it is important to see your doctor, as this may be a sign of an underlying problem or illness not readily visible.
Fever
Dr. Zarbock explains …
“Generally speaking, in an otherwise healthy child, a fever should not be feared. It is the body’s natural response to an infection and its attempt to create an environment in which an infection can be eliminated.”
Mama, MD: Most of the time, a fever is kind of like the yappy little dog next door: Its bark is worse than its bite. However, nothing can push a concerned parent into panic mode faster than watching the numbers on the thermometer rise into triple digits. When it’s just an elevated temperature with no other symptoms, Zarbock recommends trying a fever reducer like acetaminophen or ibuprofen (if your baby is 6 months or older) and a lukewarm bath and light clothing. You might be surprised how often a fever lasts only a few hours before disappearing completely.
Consult a professional: A temperature of 100.4

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