How often does your child get sick? Chances are good it happens all the time. That doesn’t mean you shouldn’t take it seriously, because some conditions are more serious than others. Here are five common childhood illnesses that are easy to overlook, but can rapidly take a more serious turn.
Roseola is very common with infants and young toddlers, but in many cases you’ll think it’s nothing but the common cold. In some cases it will be more severe and also feature a bright rosy rash spreading from the chest outwards. A little TLC will handle most cases within a week, but if your child has a very high fever or a fever that lasts more than three days you should see your urgent care clinic.
2. Ear Infections
We all know that ear infections are common for kids, but it’s important to still take them seriously. Most ear infections are bacterial, which means that a simple trip to the doctor and some antibiotics will clear them up. If left untreated, an ear infection may clear up on its own—or it may get more serious and even lead to trapped fluid in the ear and damage to your child’s hearing. Err on the safe side and get the medicine.
3. Hand Foot and Mouth Disease
With such an old fashioned name you know this disease has been tormenting kids forever. It’s caused by a virus that typically flares up in late summer, just in time for back to school. It includes the usual flu-like symptoms but also blisters on the hands and the soles of the feet, plus in some cases a severe sore throat. Children’s cold medicine will handle many of the symptoms, but make sure your kid is drinking enough fluid, especially if it hurts to swallow. The disease can be passed to other kids so keep your child at home till they’re better—usually about a week.
Pinkeye is rarely dangerous but it is a problem because it spreads like wildfire. It’s usually caused by a bacterial infection of the lining of the eye which causes irritation, redness and itching. Most pinkeye can be treated readily with antibacterial drops, but it’s important to keep your child home until they’re better and not to let them share blankets or pillows with other kids. If the eye drops don’t work, follow up with your urgent care center to explore other possible causes.
5. Lyme Disease
This one mostly affects kids who live in the country or love playing outside, but ticks can be found even in city parks—and are easily picked up and passed to kids by dogs who love playing in tall grass. Children get Lyme disease when a tick bites them and burrows into their skin. The illness will come weeks later and seem like a bad case of the flu, and may or may not have a rash where the tick bite was. Lyme disease can be very serious if untreated and can leave a child devastated for months or years. Not all ticks cause Lyme disease, but insect repellant or long pants are the best way to prevent it. Note: kids cannot infect other people, only ticks can.
The information provided is for general interest only and should not be misconstrued as a diagnosis, prognosis or treatment recommendation. This information does not in any way constitute the practice of medicine, or any other health care profession. Readers are directed to consult their health care provider regarding their specific health situation. Marque Medical is not liable for any action taken by a reader based upon this information.