Sick baby vs. teething baby vs. crazy, paranoid mom.
We all know the drill, you take the baby’s temperature because they’re acting out of sorts and to you they’re 200 degrees but the thermometer comes back at 98.9 or something like that. So next we check all of the symptoms against what we think it might be. Drooling, mild fever (even though its .3 degrees, we include it), not eating as much, cranky, wont sleep, etc. Sounds like teething, but then there’s a rash…
Last Thursday I thought the baby was teething because he was drooling and did have an actual mild fever at 99.8 degrees. Later that night I noticed some flat red dots all over his legs and I played the assumption game thinking mild skin irritation because I switched detergents. That night he wouldn’t sleep a wink! He cried and screamed until I thought he might turn blue. He didn’t want a bottle, wouldn’t let us set him down and I assured myself it just meant he was getting his first tooth in.
Now let me just tell you that the worst thing a parent can do is log onto Web MD. That has to be a fact that is written down somewhere because the next morning after staying up all night with my little fuss ball I plugged his symptoms into the internet. Web MD told me that he had a very serious cardiac condition. I thought no way and immediately sent some pictures of his little bumps (now morphing into blisters) to his Gigi who works at a local hospital. She messages me back with four yucky words…“hand, foot and mouth.”
A quick search online and I found that this stuff is extremely contagious! I think back over my night where I thought he was teething, I let him snuggle in our bed and chomp on my fingers and blankets. Oh no! I settle him into his bunny basket and proceed to throw every plastic toy in sight into the sink with hot water, vinegar and dish soap. Next comes everything machine washable and in it goes, his bedding, our bedding, couch pillows, plush toys, you name it and it went in. Followed that up by boiling bottle nipples and lids before we rushed off to see the doctor who confirmed it…hand, foot and mouth it is.
Day after day of misery and this poor little nugget is finally starting to feel better. His bumps and blisters are going away, fever is gone and he’s resumed normal eating habits. Unfortunately, he can still be contagious for up to a week after symptoms are gone so I will remain disinfecting everything in sight for another seven days.