The story of a baby who died when his mother applied Vicks VapoRub in his chest as a home remedy for colds.
Common colds and sore throat are just a few of infections that can be treated with some over-the-counter medicines. However, physicians never encourage anyone to self-medicate. It is always ideal and safe to consult an expert first before taking any medicines or following any treatment process. This is because they need to check if the treatment plan is suitable for a specific patient and if the medicines are correctly taken based on the patient’s age, condition, and other several factors.
For a sore throat or common colds, Vicks VapoRub is a very usual ointment and widely used around the world. This might be safe for adults, but it should be taken with extra precautions for infants or babies.
As also featured on kami.com.ph, a story of a woman from Mexico, who aimed to provide relief to her 2-year old baby, who’s suffering from fever and cold by applying Vicks VapoRub on his chest, is really heart-rending. When she arrived home from work, she gave her baby a kiss. Upon touching him, she noticed that he has a fever, thinking that it was just because of colds. She immediately applied the VapoRub on his chest expecting that it will somehow provide comfort. She laid her tired body beside her baby and they fell asleep.
The mother woke up in a very surprising and terrible situation. Her baby stopped breathing. She rushed him to the hospital, but it was too late. The poor infant was dead for several hours. According to the investigation, the baby suffered from an inflammation in his respiratory track brought about by the camphor from the ointment. Experts say that its effect on children below 3 years old is different and could be worse, instead of relief. It may increase the production of phlegm and mucus in the air passages by 60 per cent, which may be the reason for difficulty in breathing and death for infants. They also pointed out that regular VapoRub is not suitable for ages 3 and below. The formulation is specifically designed for pre-schoolers and adults. So, for mommies, it’s a must to always check the label.