Childhood Illnesses: All children deserve high-quality medical care. This is often and in many cases absent. As a parent, it is important to be aware of the most up-to-date treatment guidelines so you can be absolutely sure that your child is getting the best care possible.
The innate need to provide the best of everything to your child has a lot to do with what is right. Below is the list of the most common childhood illnesses and their approved treatments.
The treatments discussed here are based on scientific evidence and best practices. However, there may be reasons why paediatricians have different recommendations for children, especially if they are undergoing medical condition or allergy.
Your paediatrician will discuss any variations in treatment with you. If you have any questions about appropriate care for your child, please discuss them with your paediatrician.
1. Sore Throat, a common virus.
A common issue among the children irrespective of the seasons they are prone to. Sore throats are painful. However, a sore throat that is caused by a virus does not need antibiotics.
In those cases, no specific medicine is required, and your child should get better in seven to ten days.
In other cases, a sore throat could be caused by an infection called streptococcal. Strep cannot be accurately diagnosed by simply looking at the throat. Further, a lab test or in-office rapid strep test, which includes a quick swab of the throat, is necessary to confirm the diagnosis of strep.
If positive for strep, your paediatrician will prescribe an antibiotic. It’s very important that your child take the antibiotic for the full course, as prescribed, even if the symptoms get better or go away. Steroid medicines (such as prednisone) are not an appropriate treatment for most cases of sore throat.
Babies and toddlers rarely get strep throat, but they are more likely to become infected by streptococcus bacteria if an older sibling has the illness. Although strep spreads mainly through coughs and sneezes, children can also get it by touching any infected materials such as toys that were in contact with the infected.
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2. Urinary Tract Infection, surprised to know?
Bladder infections also called urinary tract infections or UTIs. Definitely right! They do occur when bacteria build up in the urinary tract gets worse. A UTI can be found in children from infancy through the teen years and into adulthood.
Symptoms of a UTI include pain or burning during urination, the need to urinate frequently or urgently, bedwetting. Also, abdominal pain, or side or back pain.
Your child’s doctor will need a urine sample to test for a UTI before determining treatment. Your doctor may adjust the treatment depending on which bacteria is found in your child’s urine.
3. Ear Pain, quite deadly!
Ear pain, as common as it sounds it is equally dangerous in children and can have many causes such as:
- Including ear infection (otitis media),
- Swimmer’s ear (infection of the skin in the ear canal),
- Pressure from a cold or sinus infection,
- Teeth pain radiating up the jaw to the ear,
- and others.
To tell the difference, your paediatrician will need to examine your child’s ear. In fact, an in-office exam is still the best way for your paediatrician to make an accurate diagnosis.
If your child’s ear pain is accompanied by a high fever, involves both ears, or if your child has other signs of illness, your paediatrician may decide that an antibiotic is the best treatment.
The diagnosis by far has had cases where infections are caused by viruses and do not require antibiotics to cure. If your paediatrician suspects your child’s ear infection may be from a virus, the doctor would recommend helping relieve your child’s ear pain until the virus runs its course without medication.
4. Skin Infection, often relatable!
In most children with skin infections, a skin test (culture or swab) may be needed to determine the most appropriate treatment. MRSA, staph infection, or other resistant bacteria are the primary reasons for skin infection.
It is important to be upfront and tell your doctor if your child has a history of such skin infection. Also, if he or she has been exposed to other family members or contacts with resistant bacteria.
5. Bronchitis, not that common!
Chronic bronchitis is an infection of the larger, more central airways in the lungs and is more often seen in adults. Often the word “bronchitis” is used to describe a chest virus and does not require antibiotics. However, with the rising pollution there a heavy chance for infants and other toddlers to get it.
6. Bronchiolitis, leads to wheezing?
Bronchiolitis is common in infants and young children during the cold and flu season. Often, a doctor may understand it through the child’s breathing sounds as “wheezing”.
Bronchiolitis is most often caused by another virus. Again, this infection requires no antibiotics to deals with the virus. Instead, most treatment recommendations are geared toward making your child comfortable with close monitoring for any difficulty in breathing, eating, or signs of dehydration.
Medicines used for patients with asthma (such as albuterol or steroids) are not recommended for most infants and young children with bronchiolitis. Children who were born prematurely or have underlying health problems may need different treatment plans.
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7. Common Cold, no medications required!
Colds are more often caused by viruses at all seasons in the upper respiratory tract. Many young children—especially those in child care—can get 6 to 8 colds per year. The Symptoms of a cold (including runny nose, congestion, and cough) may last for up from ten days to two weeks.
Green mucus in the nose does not automatically mean that antibiotics are needed; common colds never need antibiotics.
However, if a sinus infection is suspected, your doctor will carefully decide whether antibiotics are the best choice.
Based on your child’s symptoms and a physical exam, it is still recommended to choose natural and homemade remedies over antibiotics.
8. Pain, seek the doctor immediately!
The best medicines for pain relief for children are acetaminophen or ibuprofen, yet paediatricians have different prescribed medicines for different cases. Discuss with the paediatrician about the course of medicine depending on the child’s weight, height and age.
Narcotic pain medications are not appropriate for children with common injuries or complaints such as the sprained ankle, ear pain, or sore throats.
Codeine is a thing that should never be used for children as it’s been associated with severe respiratory problems and even death in children.
9. Cough and preventive remedies!
Coughs are usually caused by viruses and do not often require antibiotics.
Cough medicine is not recommended for children 4 years of age and younger. Or for children 4 to 6 years of age, it is usually rare that the doctor advises for any medications.
Studies have consistently shown that cough medicines do not work in the 4-years-and-younger age group and have the potential for serious side effects. Cough medicines with narcotics—such as codeine—should not be used in children.
Before heading to the doctor, do try out this home remedies until the situation is severe or an emergency:
- Keep her head elevated. …
- Steam things up. …
- Use a humidifier. …
- Get a NoseFrida. …
- Clear the nose. …
- Get sweet on honey. …
- Lift your ban on candy. …
- Use a chest rub.
10. Bacterial Sinusitis, a thin margin!
Bacterial sinusitis is caused by bacteria trapped in the sinuses.
Sinusitis is suspected when cold-like symptoms such as nasal discharge, daytime cough, or both last over ten days without improvement.
Antibiotics may be needed if this condition is accompanied by thick yellow nasal discharge and a fever for at least 3 or 4 days in a row.