Nothing jolts you out of your happy dreamland like a sick baby in the middle of the night. She may have been fine when she went to bed, but over the course of a few hours, her high-pitched crying indicates things have changed. Uh-oh!
Whether she’s spiking a fever, congested from a stuffy nose or – even worse – vomiting, the best thing you can do in situations like this is be prepared. If you have a Middle-of-the-Night Survival Kit nearby, you can soothe your baby more quickly and switch gears into supermom mode despite the sleepy-time cobwebs in your brain.
Why does my baby get sick during the night?
The timing just couldn’t be worse, right? Well, there are reasons why babies tend to struggle with various symptoms at night. If your baby has croup, it gets worse at night because the blood flow to her respiratory systems changes when she lies down, more easily aggravating a barking seal episode.
The same can be said for things like stuffy noses, earaches and coughs due to cold/flu or allergens. When your baby lies down to sleep, it puts extra pressure on inflamed tissue, mucus builds up and nasal passages naturally swell. That’s why most upper respiratory issues get worse at night.
Fevers typically spike at night because your baby’s body temperature naturally rises in the evenings – yours does too! If she was running at slight fever during the day, it will be more prevalent at night since she gets warmer anyway. In fact, in addition to her body temp, histamines in the body naturally rise at night too. That’s why itchy skin or rashes tend to get worse during nighttime too.
Survival Kit Essentials
We think these items will definitely come in handy for middle-of-the-night episodes. Just toss them in a Ziploc baggie and put it somewhere that’s easy to find. When you need ‘em, they’ll be there.
1 – Flashlight
2 – Thermometer
3 – Little Remedies® Baby Essentials Kit
4 – Cortisone Cream
5 – Pediatrician after-hours phone number
Nothing is worse than stumbling around half-asleep in the dark or turning on bright lights that further distress an already unhappy baby. Plus, not only do you need to tend to your baby, but you also need to be able to read the small print on medicine bottles. That’s why I think having a flashlight handy is a good idea. You might even store an extra set of batteries with it just in case.
We recently listed our top picks for baby thermometers and that is something you really need to have close-by. Make sure you know how to use the thermometer and again, make sure the batteries are fresh.
Little Remedies® Baby Essentials Kits are amazing because they have a variety of things you need for common nighttime symptoms. These kits are available at Wal-Mart, Babies R Us, Buy Buy Baby and target.com. They include products like Infant Fever/Pain Reliever, Saline Drops with Nasal Aspirator, Gripe Water and Gas Relief Drops.
If your baby is running a fever or perhaps she’s feeling bad due to teething, a dose of Infant Fever/Pain Reliever will help ease her symptoms.
If she’s struggling with a stuffy nose, grab the saline drops! By propping her up and gently flushing out excess mucus, she should get enough relief to rest. Remember, the Little Remedies® Nasal Aspirator has been specially designed for newborns with a soft angled tip, so it’s easy-to-use and friendly to sore little noses.
Nighttime illnesses like croup can be scary, especially for first-time parents. If you encounter an illness that concerns you, keep contact info for your pediatrician handy. Most pediatricians have an after-hours line, so you can speak to a medical professional at any time of the day or night. In most cases, if you leave a message the doctor on call will give you a call back within minutes.
Nighttime Must-Haves in Nursery
After surviving a few brutal stomach bugs with my baby boys, I realized sleeping on the floor next to the crib was the best way to go. With that in mind, I always kept a pillow and blanket in the nursery for myself, so I could camp out as needed. I also had extra trash bags on hand for accidents. A cool mist humidifier was a lifesaver for our middle-of-the-night coughing fits.
What’s in your nighttime essentials kit? Let us know in the comments on Facebook!