First of all, we apologize for the lack of postings the past couple of days. Having three sick children (8 year old twin boys and a 4 year old daughter), whether it is the common cold or swine flu, is a time-consuming event for any family. We will be picking the pace back up though now that the kids seem to be more themselves and providing we don’t come down with it next.

Like most parents, as soon as we started hearing about the H1N1 virus we immediately began our research to be sure we could provide the best course of action for our family. This proved to be more difficult than expected. The H1N1 virus became quickly politicized and passed through the mass media as if it were a new plague. Within a few months the word pandemic was being used by the CDC and vaccination production had begun. The producers of the swine flu vaccine had restrictions on time and testing lifted in the effort to get it on the market as quickly as possible.

This concerned us greatly, how could we begin to understand the possible risks of a vaccination pushed through so fast? I don’t think we can, and after all the research we decided it would not be the right choice for our family to get the H1N1 vaccine. (Go to the Health category of this blog for information on what we found in our research.) But, even after this decision, there was still the anticipation of what will happen if our children became infected. I heard so many in panic because the vaccine was delayed and they just didn’t know what they would do without it. We turned to prayer at that time, and just days later our three children became ill almost simultaneously.

On Saturday one of our kids were complaining of a sore throat, slight cough, and runny nose. So, not wanting to over react, we treated him with cold medication that night and Sunday. By Sunday night the other two children had come down with coughs, sore throat, and fevers. And come Monday morning all three kids had coughs, sore throats, fevers between 101-103, runny noses, and just a ton of moaning and groaning about their misery. Like anyone would, by then, we made appointments for them to all see the pediatrician.

The pediatrician took strep throat samples as well as samples for testing for the H1N1 influenza virus. To our surprise, all of the children tested positive for both! The pediatrician said that she would question it had it taken 10 minutes to get a positive, but the results became evident in less than 2 minutes. We were then given prescriptions for antibiotics and Tamiflu all around. This was proving to be an expensive little bug. However, we would get what ever we had to make our little angels feel better.

That first night was probably the worst. We had some trouble keeping two of our three children’s fevers down, but after ibuprofen and baths it was under control. One of our boys has asthma and he had to take his inhaler 2 times. The long acting cough medicine managed their coughs nearly the entire night, although they did get some doses in between. Then we just made sure they got their prescription medications as ordered and kept up with the ibuprofen and cough medicine through the next 2 days. Our child with asthma only used his inhaler a total of 4 times though, which his reaction with his asthma was a big concern of ours in the beginning.

All in all, they were all acting mostly normal by day 3 and completely normal by day 4 (yesterday). Our run in with H1N1 and strep throat at the same time was far milder than we would have ever thought possible. It was definitely less severe than the seasonal flu and did not have as bad of an effect on our son with asthma as we anticipated. The best news, according to theory they will not get it again this season. But judging from the mildness of our experience, I do not foresee us ever being overly concerned about this illness and our family members in the future.

I know there have been deaths linked to this illness. Everyone reacts differently to all viruses, and influenza is not the only virus that can result in death. Proper precautions should always be taken and you should go to the doctor right away if influenza of any strain is suspected. I am so thankful that we did not have complications with H1N1 or strep throat in our children the past week and I pray that we will not in the days to come. My heart goes out to those who have suffered hardships due to any illness. The intent of this post is to give some insight into what happened in a normal family that came down with this virus so that others may know what to expect and to help them make informed decisions.

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