How we helped our toddler through speedier recovery
2 years ago / in Health
In my last post, I wrote about Little Claire’s 30-month long ‘health streak’. And that glorious record was met by a viral infection which came just in time for spring break. Talk about good timing!
In this post I’m going to document a day-by-day breakdown of how it all unfolded. It turned out to be a viral infection that the paediatrician estimated may take weeks to fully recover. We were out of the woods in exactly a week, and I’m going to share what we did every day to help her through the symptoms and eventually, recovery.
Early symptoms and the beginning
She had been having a little cough and runny nose but nothing more than a few dry coughs or a couple of sneezes a day, and she was still her usual self.
She only had a few bites to eat at lunch and barely ate at dinner either. She started looking tired toward late afternoon, so we prepped for earlier bedtime. Her temperature rose to 38.5º C (101.3º F), so we started her on 5ml of Tylenol, lots of water, dressed her down, and gave her essential oils rub on the feet (thieves, oregano, and peppermint). She dozed off in no time, and we stayed up from time to time that night to keep an eye out on her temperature and give her sips of water here and there.
The next few days… fevers and coughs
She slept through 12 hours that night, and the following day we stayed in as she was still lingering around 38.5º to 39ºC (101.3 to 102.2º F). She looked tired after brief play times and didn’t have much appetite, so we tried to work in bite-sized foods that are nutrient-dense and that she would eat, like avocado, boiled egg, banana, yogurt, quinoa cereal, nuts, and milk.
She took a few naps throughout the day, and we gave her plenty of water, and a couple of times with raw honey in warm water. We kept an eye out on her temperature and gave her Tylenol every time it got close to 39ºC. Essential oils diffused in the room as well as applied on her chest, back and feet helped soothe and comfort her.
That evening she went to bed with a dose of Tylenol. By around 5am she was tossing around, and turned out she was having a high fever (39.5ºC or 103.1ºF)! We jumped out of bed and pulled her up for another dose of Tylenol and cool packs on her head and back. She was crying and must feel so crappy with the high fever. After a few minutes, the temp came down slightly and she drifted back off to sleep, while I stayed half awake to keep watching her temp.
We took her in to the ER in the morning, and after a full examination, the doctor was happy to discharge us for further monitoring and we were asked to come back to the hospital if fever went on for a total of 5 days, or if she became worse. She looked really well during the whole time, although exhausted. Came home for a short nap after Tylenol, with a few dry coughs here and there.
She still woke up rather warm, but not warm enough for another dose of paracetamol. I then thought about how I had bounced back from a possibly viral-inflicted fever last year after taking my spirulina supplement, so I gave her 2 tablets crushed into liquid in warm honey (recommended dose for children over 3 years of age is 3 tablets).
There was no drama at night time sleep that night.
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The next day she woke up fine, still taking naps here and there throughout the day but was playing happily otherwise. Appetite was still on the low. Still gave her tons of water.
She woke up telling us that she was all good, that her ‘sickness bug’ had finally gone away. She was thrilled, and we went out to eat + grocery shop. She told us she was tired by midday, and caught a nap in the car when I got a call from the hospital for a paediatrician appointment we had requested on Saturday for assessing her alopecia!
That night she went to bed without Tylenol as there was no fever, BUT she ended up dry-coughing throughout the night! There wasn’t much of a good sleep for either of us, and poor thing she was so exhausted in the morning.
After a nap mid morning, we headed out for our paediatrician appointment. The doctor did another full examination and found no evidence of bacterial infection, so we were told to let the virus run its cycle, possibly for a few more weeks the way it was looking. We were told to help soothe her cough using chest rub, but to not use any cough syrup (coughs are a mechanism for the body to rid itself of bugs and cough syrups suppress the coughing, which, along with lowered immune system, creates a nice cosy environment for the bugs to thrive). Cough subsided to almost nothing in one day
The rest of the day she just spent resting up as she was still exhausted from a whole night of bad sleep. The doctor suggested milk-based foods like ice cream and yogurt if she would eat them, in order to keep up her food intake.
I gave her a couple of cups of warm honey that day to help soothe the cough, 2 tablets of spirulina, and chest rubs throughout the day using essential oils (thieves, cypress, melaleuca, and R.C. diluted in carrier oil).
Diffusing cypress and eucalyptus essential oils in the bedroom, PLUS dropping a few drops of R.C. on her pillow really did the trick to soothe her scratchy throat so that she could sleep a little better. To our surprise, she barely coughed that night! Probably once every few hours or so!
The daily morning and afternoon naps, and 6pm bedtime were starting to grow on us (me, mostly).
All looking well, with the frequency and intensity of the dry coughs being fewer and further in between. There was one last episode of fever though, which I was puzzled with at first. So back to Tylenol we went, before she was off to bed that evening.
And there you have it, 7 days on the dot.
She was back and good as new (almost). No fevers, only a few coughs or sniffles here and there. She continued to catch up on her rest for a few more days, by taking naps and super early bedtime (6pm). She was slowly eating more, although not back to her usual portion size yet, so I still tried to work in more nutrient-dense food choices for the small portions that she took.
Essential oils chest and feet rub, and diffused in the bedroom helped comfort her and helped her sleep better at night. I tried a few combination including clove, but I found that cypress paired with eucalyptus worked really well for us.
Although it would’ve been nice to continue a 30-month long ‘health streak’, we take it as a win. And we’re so grateful that she managed to pull through this like a champ!
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