by The Welthi Bureau | 27th Dec, 2018
With the temperatures dipping in Hyderabad, parents shudder at the thought of terrible coughs and colds. Many children fall ill with a common cold, sore throat, tonsillitis, ear infections, pneumonia, bronchiolitis, viral diarrhea, asthma or wheezing episodes.
Common cold and Flu – most cases of a runny nose, mild coughs, mild fever, are due to viral infections. These can usually be managed with paracetamol and home remedies like steam inhalation, warm liquids, and gargling. Flu symptoms are more severe with high fevers and body pains. Do not use cough syrups and antibiotics without consulting your Paediatrician. In a majority of these cases, the disease spontaneously resolves in 5-7 days. Flu can be prevented to an extent by taking a yearly flu vaccine.
Sore throat – like pharyngitis or tonsillitis usually presents with fever, throat pain or throat irritation. Most of these infections are viral but get the child checked by a Paediatrician as some may require antibiotics. Home remedies work well for sore throat as well.
Ear Infection – If your child complains of ear pain, or if a younger child is crying continuously without any other reason, please get them checked by a pediatrician. Ear infections are usually preceded by common cold symptoms in this weather.
Bronchiolitis is a common viral respiratory infection seen in young children (usually less than 12 months). It often starts similar to a common cold and then can progress into a more serious illness with wheezing, difficulty in breathing, and dehydration. Most children do well at home, but some children will need to be hospitalized due to breathing problems or poor feeding.
Pneumonia usually presents with high fever, severe cough and breathing difficulty/ fast breathing. Pneumonia needs prompt treatment with antibiotics.
Asthma/ wheezing/ allergic cough – Winter season is the time when many children have worsening of asthma, persistent cough and wheezing. If your child has a known case of asthma or recurrent wheezing please keep Levosalbutamol or
Salbutamol nebulizer solution or inhalers ready. In case of severe bouts of a cough/wheezing/ fast breathing/ breathing difficulty, you can immediately give the medicine before taking him/ her to a Paediatrician.
For persistent cough/ wheeze, your Paediatrician may prescribe some medicines/ inhalers/ nebulizations to be given during the winter months.
Viral diarrhea – watery loose stools are common in winters, especially in younger children. Children should be regularly given oral rehydration solutions to prevent dehydration.
HOW TO PREVENT INFECTIONS
Hand washing – is the most effective way to prevent the spread of these infections. You can provide your child with a hand sanitizer in school if regular hand washing is not possible.
Children should be taught to sneeze or cough into a tissue or the elbow.
Build up your child's immunity with healthy foods.
Cover the child in appropriate clothes based on the weather. Over layering the child with woolens is also not recommended
Sick kids should not be sent/allowed in Daycare and schools
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