Travelling with Baby
Leaving home with a baby for the first time brings on anxiety – going on holiday, away from home base, especially if far from civilisation, takes anxiety to a whole new level! What if your baby gets ill – runs a fever or has diarrhoea? What if your toddler has an insect bite or cuts himself badly?
The solution? As the old girl-guide motto goes – be prepared! Pack yourself a kick-ass travelling first aid kit. Going from head to toe – use the following guidelines:
Fever and pain – Take a paracetamol syrup with you, such as Calpol or Panado. Also worth taking is paracetamol-based suppositories, in case your baby is vomiting and can’t keep oral medication down. You also need a thermometer to determine if your little one has a fever.
Earache – Use the painkiller you have taken with, then get your little one to the doctor as soon as possible.
Eye injuries – If your baby has an eye infection or trauma to the eye while you are away, wash it out with saline eye drops and get to a doctor when you can to have it checked out.
Congested or runny nose – Decongestants are not recommended for children under 2 years of age, unless prescribed by a doctor. So for runny noses and a blocked upper respiratory tract, the best thing is a good-quality saline nose spray. Even if the mucus turns green – it is not an indication of a bacterial infection necessarily, so if your baby is not running a fever or coughing, just keep going with the saline spray.
Sore throat – A red and inflamed throat is most probably viral, but will lead to lack of appetite due to pain. Treat with the paracetamol you have taken with and see a doctor if it persists.
Coughing – A doctor should see your baby if he has a cough. No cough mixture is recommended for babies under 2, unless prescribed by a doctor. The cough mixture I would recommend for older toddlers is Stodal, which is a homeopathic cough soother.
Tummy bugs – The main principle is to keep your little one hydrated, so a good rehydration solution is essential. Anti-vomiting and anti-diarrhoea medication should only be used on advice from a doctor and thus only taken in the first aid kit in circumstances when you are too far to get to a pharmacy.
Insect bites and allergies – In the case of an allergic reaction or a bite or sting, infant-appropriate anti-histamine is useful. Calamine lotion or Anthisan are great topical treatments for bites and stings.
Trauma – In case of cuts and bruises, the following should form part of a good first aid kit:
• Syringe for giving meds
• Rescue remedy
• Cotton wool
• Alcohol swabs
• Antibiotic ointment
• Burnshield for burns
• Plasters in various sizes
• Gauze bandage – non-sticky
• Micropore or similar adhesive tape