Wednesday, September 24, 2014

Why I Stopped Giving Advise

By the time kid #3 rolled around I was an expert. Who needed medical school? I had 2 other kids..I had seen it all and knew how to treat it all, or so I thought. By #3 we were past late night visits to the ER because someone woke up with a 101 fever. No more calls to the doctor's office over strange red marks that appeared which were later determined to be some juice that I missed with the wipe. We didn't doctor's appointments..I just needed a nurse to answer the phone and call in what prescription I requested.

I knew it all so I didn't mind giving advise to any new mom that asked. I was happy to share my years of mommy experience.  I was happy to tell them that the expensive diapers weren't worth it, giving them cereal at a few months old in their bottle helps them sleep and you don't have to run to the doctor for every fever, sneeze and cough. I thought I was being helpful. 

#3 had a routine appointment when she was around 2 months old. It was no biggie. She has a little fever and runny nose but it was January so I didn't think twice about it. I was more concerned with what we would be picking up while we were at the doctor's office surrounded by kids that were really sick. It was a routine appointment but since she had a runny nose we didn't get the benefit of the well child waiting room. We had to sit in the room with the flu, strep and every other illness floating around our county. And that was all I was worried about. 

We finished up her appointment and everything was great. As the doctor was walking out I mentioned that she was running a low grade fever but had a stuffy nose so it was probably nothing but a cold. Since she was only a few weeks old he agreed that it probably was but wanted a CBC just to be sure. A little while later he walked in and said ok, we are admitting her. I was in shock. I even asked him since when do you admit kids for a cold?! He told me her WBC was over 20 which led him to think she had a bacterial infection. It never crossed my mind that she could really be sick and I not be able to see it. I never considered that she could be hurting or feel terrible but couldn't tell me. I just assumed since she was snotty she had a cold. 

We got to the hospital and had chest X-rays, strep and RSV swabs and a urinalysis to check for a UTI. I felt horrible. I should have known she was sick and not assumed I knew everything. Sometimes a cold isn't a cold. 

Thankfully it ended up just being a virus. This was many months prior to us discovering that Ains has an insane response to any little virus. Her body goes into full blown fight mode over the smallest illnesses and that's why her white count was so high. Since that time a WBC doesn't really do us any good. Instead of admitting her I usually end up taking her in a few times to see if it's going down.

This taught me a lesson. I don't know everything. A cough can be just a cough or it can be pneumonia. A sneeze can be a sneeze or a sinus infection. A backache can be a UTI and a tummy ache can be GERD. Sometimes it's not as simple as we make it out to be. 

I stopped giving advise after this. If someone asks me something I will tell them my opinion or my experiences with my kids but I don't tell them not to take their kids to the doctor over a fever, runny nose or cough. If you think your kids are sick you do what you think you should. Never let anyone tell you that you are being overprotective by taking them to the doctor for every little thing. You never know when that little thing isn't so little. 

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