All children get sick from time to time. When your child isn’t feeling well, you would want to know how to recognise the symptoms, what can you do to help, and when to call the doctor.
Common infectious diseases that affects kids
With children getting as many as eight colds per year or more, this contagious viral infection of the upper respiratory tract is the most common infectious disease and the number one reason kids visit the doctor and stay home from school.
The first symptoms of a cold are often a tickle in the throat, a runny or stuffy nose, and sneezing. Kids with colds may also have a sore throat, cough, headache, mild fever, fatigue, muscle aches, and loss of appetite.
When to call the doctor
If your child’s symptoms get worse instead of better
If your child’s symptoms appear at the same time every year or occur when your child is exposed to pollen, dust, animals, or another substance, your child could have an allergy
If your child who has trouble breathing or wheezes when he or she catches a cold could have asthma.
Also call the doctor if your child has any of these symptoms:
- coughing up a lot of mucus
- shortness of breath
- unusual lethargy/tiredness
- inability to keep food or liquids down or poor fluid intake
- increasing headache or facial or throat pain
- severely painful sore throat that interferes with swallowing
- High fever (38.0° C) or higher that lasts for more than a day
- chest or stomach pain
- swollen glands in the neck
Otitis externa (commonly known as swimmer’s ear) is an infection of the ear canal, the tubular opening that carries sounds from the outside of the body to the eardrum. You don’t have to swim to get swimmer’s ear, anything that breaks the skin of the ear canal can result in getting an infection
The primary symptom of swimmer’s ear is ear pain, which can be severe and gets worse when the outer part of the ear is pulled or pressed on. It also may be painful to chew.
When to call your doctor
Call your doctor immediately if your child experienced pain in the ear with or without fever, decreased hearing in one or both ears, or abnormal discharge from the ear.
Is an inflammation of the conjunctiva, the clear membrane that covers the white part of the eye and the inner surface of the eyelids. Newborns are particularly susceptible conjunctivitis and can be more prone to serious health complications if it goes untreated.
The primary symptom of conjunctivitis is discomfort in the eye where the child may say that it feels like there’s sand in the eye. it also causes redness of the eye and inner eyelid and discharge from the eyes, which may cause the eyelids to stick together when the child awakens in the morning.
When to call your doctor
If your child has conjunctivitis, it’s important to contact your doctor to know how to treat it.
Other serious eye conditions can mimic conjunctivitis, so a child who complains of severe pain, changes in eyesight, or sensitivity to light should be examined.
If your child has conjunctivitis and starts to develop increased swelling, redness, and tenderness in the eyelids and around the eye, along with a fever.
Those symptoms may mean the infection has started to spread beyond the conjunctiva and will require additional treatment