My parents are the type of people that go to the doctor at the first sign of a sniffle. Back feels a little funny? Go to the doctor immediately. New freckle? Get that thing checked out, then removed. Marlo coughs once...take her to the doctors. Granted, they have good reason to go to the doctors for most things - they are in fabulous health, but in their 60s and live in South Florida, and will probably live to be 100 so they need to stay healthy!
I do not have the same mentality when it comes to myself. I have chronic sinus and back issues, and need to have shots and surgery for both and I am just putting it off. When I get a cold I don't go to the doctor, I just usually get some drugs at CVS and ride it out. I don't think my husband has ever been to a doctor, besides for a physical every now and then, in the 12.5 years we have been together. My parents are probably cringing on the lanai as they read this (sounds so Golden Girls.)
When it comes to the girls I pretty much call the doctor about everything, because I feel it is better to be safe than sorry. When they were both newborns I found myself calling the doctor practically daily and leaving a message on the nurses line starting with "Um, this is Val's mom again..." I have spoken to the nurses about everything from newborn poop to potty training, baby-proofing to balance, and flat heads to formula.
Over Christmas break in Florida Marlo got sick as soon as we stepped off the plane and within days was diagnosed with an ear infection. Val caught the same cold a few days later, but didn't have a fever so we were just doing the usual boogie sucking, steam showers and humidifiers for her.
Well, when we got back up to Boston the girls were still sick and we took them to see our doc (after seeing some little hobbit-looking man in Florida at a walk in clinic, who we are still not sure actually had a medical degree) - lo and behold Val has an upper respiratory infection and an ear infection to boot. Because Val was only 4.5 months old and unable to properly clear her lungs herself, we were given a nebulizer to use at home to help break up the congestion. A nebulizer is a breathing apparatus where you put a mask over your child's face and they inhale the vapors, consisting of Albuteral and saline solution. Without the medicine added it is the equivalent of hanging out in the bathroom with a hot shower running, with which we are all too familiar with.
Fast forward to today - Marlo is all better, Val is about 90%. Over the last couple days I have heard Val make these weird gasping sounds. It is like a deep intake of breath, mixed with a little gurgliness...does that make sense? Kind of like a baby laugh, but a little higher in pitch. She had done it once or twice but did it a few times last night as I was preparing dinner, so I made a mental note to call the doc about it today.
Well, on my way home from dropping Marlo off at school Val started to make that noise repeatedly in her car seat. Like every inhale of breath was that gasping noise. I started to freak out and immediately called the doctor. She didn't seem to be in respiratory distress (meaning she wasn't turning blue or looking like she was in pain or struggling,) but for a good two minutes every intake of breath was that gasping weird noise she had been making. The nurse told me to bring her right in, so a u-turn we made.
On the way to the doctors Val fell asleep, and when I woke her up in the examination room she was all smiles (as usual). She got checked out by a nurse practitioner who said her lungs sounded fine, and overall she seemed great. Then she made the noise and the NP said "hmmm, that is a funny noise." I asked if it could have something to do with her reflux, and she said "possibly." Ok, so now what? And she told me that "babies make weird noises, and this could just be a weird baby noise."
So I guess I just have a baby that makes weird noises? I am not convinced. I have a feeling that it has something to do with her reflux and acid coming back up into her throat, and that requires being seen by our pediatric ENT, who Marlo was all too familiar with when she was a baby. This may mean scopes up her nose and down her throat, trials with different medicines, possible outpatient procedures where she has to be put under...but I hope that it ends up being just a "weird baby noise."