K.D. asks from Woodland, CA on March 04, 2011
Whooping Cough or Just a Cold?
My son will be 4 months old next week, and he has devoloped a cold from my BIL. For 4 days now, he has a cough (not horrible, but not going away), sneezes, runny nose, and watery eyes. Temp hasnt reached above 99.1, so no real fever. He is current on vaccines, and due for another appt March 18. Now I may be over-Googling, but it sems like he has the beginning symptoms of Whooping Cough. I cant schedule an appt w his Dr till Monday morning...
Wondering if anyones kids have had Whooping Cough, how to help ease the coughing, and if Im overreacting...
D.B. answers from Charlotte on March 04, 2011
A regular cold from your BIL doesn't turn into whooping cough. But a cold can turn into bronchitis, and post nasal drip that causes a lot of coughing.
If he starts to have trouble breathing, you don't wait until Monday - you go to the ER. Pneumonia is something you don't want to mess around with.
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R.K. answers from Boston on March 04, 2011
A seal bark sounding cough is croup, coughing jags that last long and are severe leaving them gasping for air so that when they inhale they make a high pitched whoop is whooping cough. Your brother would have had to have whooping cough (you'd know) in order or your little one to get it. He probably just had a cold it's only been 4 days just give him extra tlc, saline spray and booger sucker if he needs it, prop up the crib so he's not laying flat, use a humidifier, unfortunately there isn't too much you can do when little ones get colds.
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S.B. answers from Chicago on March 04, 2011
I agree with Dawn, if your baby wasn't exposed to whooping cough, that would not be the first inclination for a diagnosis. You can't give an infant cold medicine, but you can use a humidifier to help loosen the mucus (or steam from a hot shower). Also, get some saline drops and irrigate his nose, then suction out the mucus so he can breathe better. I've used the baby chest rub on my son and it works really well at silencing his cough and helping him sleep (There is baby Vicks, but I just got the Up & Up brand from Target, it's cheaper and essentially the same thing). I would double check with the pharmacist that it would be appropriate to use on a 4 month old. The cough is probably just due to the excess mucus, but if it continues for more than 7 days with no improvement, or worsens, then take him to the doctor to get checked out. Bad colds can develop into bronchitis, pneumonia, ear infections, etc. so if it's not getting better you need to make sure it doesn't get worse. Good luck mama, and try not to worry so much :) It's hard when babies get sick, but with all your love and attention he'll be back to normal in no time!
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M.L. answers from Tampa on March 04, 2011
While the internet can be great, it also can do more harm than good, and in a lot of cases, make you freak out and worry needlessly. As for easing the coughing, try a humidifier and Baby Vicks on the feet with socks. I swear by it! Also, syringe the boogers out of the nose. BTW- something I learned along the way- doctors don't consider it a true fever unless body temp raises above 100.1. Good luck! It's so hard when the babies are sick!
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M.R. answers from Columbus on March 04, 2011
4 days is not all that long. It could just be a cold and sometimes kids cough. Dawn is right, watch him for signs that he is having trouble breathing. That is an emergency, and at this point, there is nothing more to worry about. He has what he has. If he needs to see the doctor on Monday, take him. If he has a true emergency, go to the ER.
I would give you a little "old mom" advice. When you go to the doctor, go in and tell them what hurts, how it sounds, how long, when it started, what color it is, and what his temp is. Don't go in and ask if it is "such and such." You want to give the doctor all the infomation, and let them do the examination that they think needs to be done on the child they see in the office. You don't want them to tell you if your child has "such and such" you want them to examine your child and tell you what is going on so that you can treat it. You also do not want the doctor to write you off as a nut, that could be a distraction you do not want, just in case it turns out to be something serious that needs your doctors full attention.
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J.S. answers from Washington DC on March 04, 2011
My son had Whooping Cough when he was 6 months. He was current on his vaccines also, but they are not immune until much later on in their vaccine schedule. Infants that get whooping cough are genereally exposed from an adult with bronchitis. The adult doesn't sound like the child when they cough. There are some websites you can find that have videos of a child coughing with whooping cough. They generally have coughung fits that have a gasp like sound after the cough- which is the whoop. It does not sound like the barking with croup. It is a very serious illness. I had to use my digital camera to record one of my infant's coughing fits to show the pediatrician because of course he wouldn't have one while we were being seen. A normal cold last 7-10 days, so it could be just that. I would do a search and listen to the specific cough associated with whooping cough/pertussis, that should be helpful. Good Luck
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