Why This Mom Posted an Upsetting Video of Her Baby Struggling to Breathe

Baby with asthma
sophiecachia_/Instagram

Helplessly watching your child struggle to breathe can be a terrifying experience that no parent wants to think about. However, it's important that moms and dads be aware of what their babies' and toddlers' little bodies are trying to communicate when kids are too young to express for themselves what the problem is. Although many folks would most likely be able to recognize a full-blown asthma attack in kids, after one baby girl started breathing in an unexpected way, her mom recorded the difference in her belly and shared it online to teach other parents about what was really going on.

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When Young Mummy blogger Sophie Cachia was on vacation with her husband and two kids, her 9-month-old baby started breathing differently. The mom from Australia shared on Instagram that they immediately rushed Flossy to the hospital via ambulance on the second night of their trip, only for her husband Jaryd and baby Flossy to return on the last night because of her symptoms.

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Sophia's older child, Bobby, suffers from asthma, so these parents were aware of the signs in young children and quickly acted on what they saw. "The sucking in under her throat and her ribs means she's working really hard to breathe," she captioned the video. "We used prior knowledge and listened to our gut and Jaryd took her in just before bed time."

Flossy's parents are grateful that they acted fast instead of hesitating, as she was admitted and spent the night hooked up to oxygen. "No, we're not doctors or trained professionals, but with Bobby being an asthmatic (and has been hospitalized multiple times with asthma attacks), we're well aware of the signs to look for," she wrote. "PS: @tinyheartsfirstaid your training comes in to play more than I notice."

Baby in hospital for asthma
sophiecachia_/Instagram

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Parents are their kids' biggest advocates, so it's important that they are aware in order to act fast if something isn't right. Instead of just waiting to hear wheezing, Sophie wants parents to understand that they should always look at babies' chest or belly to see if they are sucking in the spaces between their ribs like Flossy was doing. That means that they are having to work too hard to get oxygen in, and this video makes it much easier for parents to understand what exactly that looks like. 

Sophie also explained that she didn't just film her girl's labored breathing to raise awareness for other parents -- she did it to be as prepared as possible for once they arrived at the hospital. "I only took this video just before they left in case she got to the hospital and was breathing fine, I always prefer to have something to show them upon arrival," she wrote.

Baby in hospital for asthma
sophiecachia_/Instagram

This is a helpful tip for any hospital situation, and one commenter agreed that parents should remember to film their kiddos' symptoms if possible before heading to the doctor -- instead of chancing that the symptons stop before you get there (and then having to make sure a doctor believes you or understands what it is that you're trying to describe). "Filming our child's seizures before going to hospital saved her life," user kenzie_tenzie commented. "We now tell everyone that it is so important to get footage if safe to do so. Thank you for sharing this as it is so important and could possibly save another child's life."

According to the Asthma and Allergy Foundation of America, these are the signs of asthmatic breathing in babies and toddlers that parents should be aware of:

  • Fast breathing
  • Working harder to breathe (nostrils flaring, skin is sucking in around and between ribs or above the sternum, or exaggerated belly movement)
  • Panting with normal activities such as playing
  • Wheezing (a whistling sound)
  • Persistent coughing
  • Difficulty sucking or eating
  • Tiredness, not interested in normal or favorite activities
  • Very pale or blue coloring in face, lips, and/or fingernails

The Young Mummy family vacation
sophiecachia_/Instagram

Luckily, Flossy is doing much better now and her parents are grateful for what they learned from this scare. "[Flossy] appears to be exactly like her brother and suffers from breathing difficulties triggered with sudden changes of weather -- either too cold, or too hot," Sophie wrote. "Petrifying, but as a parent you just have to run on auto pilot and get through ... for them. My baby is home and doing much better today. Mumma is still rattled, but my babies come first."

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