Is it a dragon? Is it the Night King? No, it’s RSV and it’s coming. How do you protect yourself and your loved ones during RSV season? We put together a list of some helpful information and advice we pass onto our patients and their loved ones to keep them safe and healthy during this season.
What is RSV?
RSV is a very common virus that affects our respiratory tract. It stands for respiratory syncytial virus and people who are extremely susceptible to this highly contagious virus include babies and kids, the elderly, and especially those with compromised immune systems like cancer patients.
What are the signs and symptoms of RSV?
The CDC shares the symptoms of someone with the RSV infection usually appear in stages, not all at once, and can include the following:
- Runny nose
- Decreased appetite
How long does RSV last?
Someone infected with RSV can be contagious for 3-8 days, and RSV infections can last one to two weeks.
When is RSV season?
Although it can vary, the CDC has found that RSV season can start from mid September to November and last up until mid May.
How does RSV spread?
RSV is very contagious because it’s a virus that lasts very long on surfaces. It’s easily be transmitted through:
- Droplets from coughing and sneezing from someone who’s infected
- Touching someone’s hands or a surface that has the virus like a door handle, or someone’s hands (even kissing or sharing water bottles!)
How do I protect myself and loved ones from RSV?
- Our biggest tip is to wash your hands – often and thoroughly!
- Clean surfaces that are used frequently like door knobs and counter tops
- Cover your sneezes and coughs – wash your hands afterwards!
- Avoid crowded places like hospitals or schools to help prevent the spread of RSV
What do you do if you become infected?
One of the most important things you can do is to stay hydrated by drinking water or electrolyte replacements. When you have a fever, you become dehydrated, so staying on top of hydration is key to letting your body recover, as well as keep your throat lubricated if you have a sore throat or your throat is raw from coughing. The next most important thing you can do is to stay at home and REST if you’re feeling sick. This helps prevent RSV from infecting others.
Before you take any medication, talk to your healthcare provider. If it’s not contraindicated, you can take medications like ibuprofen or Tylenol to reduce fevers, and cold medications to help with runny noses or excessive coughing. Again, always touch base with your provider before starting any medications.
Navi nurses care about you and your loved ones, and wants you to stay healthy and safe this RSV season. By following this advice and your healthcare providers specific instructions and advice as well, you’ll greatly reduce the chance of getting RSV.
Disclaimer: This content or any other content found on this site is not intended to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment. Always seek the advice of your physician or other qualified health provider with any questions you may have regarding a medical condition. Never disregard professional medical advice or delay in seeking it because of something you have read on this Website.