Winter Is Coming – Cold, Flu, Baby And You
There has been a chill in the air this week, and already I have had a cancellation for a playdate because mum and bub are both sick with the flu. It’s a menace and unfortunately once one of you is sick its very likely that the rest of the family will be too.
Typical symptoms of the cold are runny/blocked nose, sneezing and cough. Whilst the symptoms of the flu are fever, chills, muscle aches, cough, blocked and runny nose and headaches. Both are caused by a virus, which means that what we use to treat the cold and flu is really targeted at improving symptoms while your body fights it.
Being pregnant there are a lot of “no no’s” in terms of medicines to treat cold and flu, and so is the case for babies and toddlers. So, I’m going to try and help by sharing with you what I have found to be safe and helpful to treat the cold and flu for both my pregnant self and for my toddler Isaac. I will also make an honourable mention to the breastfeeding mums who are also limited in what they can use.
Flu Vaccination: The only way we can really try to prevent the flu is by getting a flu vaccination which is released every year. Each year the vaccine is different, and it is your best bet for either preventing or reducing the intensity of the flu you will get. The flu vaccination is completely safe for pregnant and breastfeeding mums and for babies from 6 months of age. In fact, pregnant mums and babies (6 months to 5 years) receive a free flu vaccination at their local GP. For other mums you can either get a flu vaccination at your doctor through purchasing it via a script from your pharmacy, or you can have your pharmacist, if approved, give you the vaccination on the spot in the pharmacy. This is great because it avoids all those appointments and waiting rooms. Last year my husband Dany gave me the flu vaccination at Amal’s Discount Chemist and it was very quick and easy, no appointment necessary, so you’re welcome to come in and get vaccinated by Dany
1.Stay Hydrated and Rest
For all mums including even if you’re pregnant or breastfeeding, drinking plenty of water and resting are the best ways to help your body fight both the cold and flu. Rest can be almost impossible when you have a screaming baby or an energetic toddler. Now is the time to call in your support from your partner or family and friends so you can get the rest you need to recover. Babies and toddlers also need to keep up fluids if they’re sick, which if they’re being breastfed keep up the breastmilk and if older milk and water. Another great way to stay hydrated is using a product such as Hydralyte. Hydralyte contains many of the salts and minerals your body loses when it becomes dehydrated. It is suitable for the whole family.
2. Panadol (Paracetamol)
If you’re experiencing fever, body aches or pain, the safest form of relief for mums is Panadol (paracetamol). You just need to ensure that you do not exceed the recommended maximum dose (4 grams) and be wary of any other medicines you take in case they also contain paracetamol. If you’re ever unsure check with your pharmacist. Panadol is also safe for babies from 1 month of age and is great for relieving fevers and reducing any pain.

3.Steam Vaporiser
A handy device which is safe for both mum and bub is a warm steam vaporiser. I find this extremely helpful especially in relieving any coughs and the menthol smell also helps to open the airways. Added benefit during winter when the air is dry is that it helps humidify the air which can help with dry skin too.

4.Vicks Vaporub and Baby Balsam
Vicks Vaporub for mum and BabyBalsam for bub from 3 months of age, are also safe and helpful to open up the airways and relieve a blocked nose.

5.Saline Nasal Spray
Another safe product for a blocked nose for mum and bub is a saline nasal spray, such as Fess. They have one for adults and one for babies. This can be used throughout the day to help clear the sinuses and help relieve the symptoms of a blocked nose.
Another safe product for a blocked nose for mum and bub is a saline nasal spray, such as Fess. They have one for adults and one for babies. This can be used throughout the day to help clear the sinuses and help relieve the symptoms of a blocked nose.

6.ArmaForce Pregnancy by BioCeuticals
During pregnancy the immune system is lowered making women more prone to infection. ArmaForce Pregnancy contains a unique blend of Echinacea, Vitamin C and D and Zinc as well as other vitamins to boost immunity and help reduce the symptoms of the cold and flu. I have found this product especially useful as my pregnancies have been through the winter months when getting sick is more likely. It is safe to take at any stage of the pregnancy but always double check with your pharmacist to ensure it is perfect for you, especially if you are taking other medicines.
These are some safe options I have personally found useful for mum and bub to help combat the cold or flu.  If you’re ever unsure check in with your pharmacist or if your symptoms persist or worsen its best to have a visit to your doctor. I hope you have found this useful too!

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