Wednesday, April 24, 2013

Adventures in the ER

I am not a medical professional.  Please do not take any of my rambling opinions as sound advice.

I hate how I so often second guess whether it is right to take my son to the ER.  In the past, I have felt like I've waited and waited... tried to treat him at home, use home remedies to bring down the fever, put him in a steam filled bathroom to ease his breathing.  Only when it became painfully obvious that my efforts at nursing were failing did I take him in to the hospital, at which point they give you the "why didn't you bring this kid in three hours ago" look.  I'm sure medical professionals aren't nearly that judgemental, but as a mom, it's easy to feel guilty.

So today, Little man ran a high fever, that we got under control before nap.  After nap, he woke up with the high fever again.  I treated it, waited an hour, saw no improvement, and made the call to take him in.  To give the full back story--he's been running a small fever since Friday night for sure, and it's been off and on for the past four days.  We had taken him to the Dr. on Monday--she said it was just a cold, he'd be fine.  He is fine.
Anyway, we get to the ER and my little boy who had been lethargically mopping around the house, resting on the blankets (highly irregular for Mr. All-Boy) turns back into super kid when he spots a collection of toys in the lobby.... We report to the triage nurse and I explain that he was at a 101.5+ fever when we left.  She takes his temp--he's at 98.4.  I'm starting to feel like those crazy hypochondriac mothers who take their kids to the hospital to get attention.
Peanut is seen by at least 7 different people when all is said and done--most of the time while waiting he runs around our patient room.  He received a breathing treatment, which did make a notable difference in his breathing, and I hope that it helps him sleep better through the night.  He also earned two perscriptions and directives to give him more Tylenol and ibuprofen.
I still don't know if I made the right call.  I feel like maybe he didn't really need what he was given at the hospital--like they give you breathing treatments and amoxicillin because that's a standard practice for a kid who comes in with a nasty cold. It's become the sure all, which I am only contributing to the likelihood that diseases are going to become super resilient to these meds because they are over prescribed.  At the same time, a little guy shouldn't have a serious cold like this for so long... looking back he was likely fighting symptoms for most of the previous week.
Long story short, I wish I had a reliable thermometer.  Once upon a time, we had a temporal lobe scanner... I have tore this house apart and for the life of me, it is no where to be found.