Common Childhood Infections Specialist
Frequently Asked Questions
What are some of the most common childhood infections?
Children get sick, sometimes at the worst possible times. The most common childhood infections are:
Also known as the stomach flu, gastroenteritis is characterized by vomiting, diarrhea, abdominal cramping, nausea and loss of appetite. While symptoms usually last a day or two, severe cases can last up to 10 days. If your child cannot keep liquids down for 24 hours, or if they have been vomiting for more than two days, contact Dr. Kolsi.
Conjunctivitis (Pink eye)
Pink eye is the inflammation of the clear membrane that lines the eyelid and covers the eyeball. Highly contagious and uncomfortable, conjunctivitis is rarely threatening to vision.
A bacterial infection that makes the throat sore, strep throat is usually accompanied by a fever, difficulty swallowing, or a sore throat that lasts for longer than two days. Strep throat is contagious and requires antibiotics for treatment.
The common cold is not one, but several viruses that can affect the upper respiratory tract (nose and throat). While it is usually harmless, it is most commonly found in children under the age of 6.
Whether they are bacterial or viral, ear infections are characterized by painful inflammation and buildup of fluids in the middle ear, the area behind the eardrum. For many children, ear infections happen during or after an upper respiratory virus.
A common lung infection in children and infants, bronchiolitis starts out with cold-like symptoms but progresses to coughing, wheezing and difficulty breathing.
How are common childhood infections treated?
While it is tempting to request an antibiotic every time your child is sick, many of these common childhood infections are treated with fluids, rest and time.
Bacterial infections, such as strep throat, conjunctivitis, some ear infections, and in some cases bronchiolitis respond well to antibiotics offering your child relief in just a few days.
Viral infections, on the other hand, must run their course with only symptom relief available.
How do I prevent common childhood infections?
The best way to prevent common childhood infections is through vigilant hand washing. Washing with soap and warm water after toileting, before meals and snacks, and as soon as your child arrives home from daycare or school can help mitigate their risk for illness. Additionally, adequate sleep, a nutritious diet, and regular exercise can bolster their immune systems and help them fight off illness.
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