We all have gone through these viral infections whenever season is changing. But when it comes to your child, u want to be double sure that nothing serious is missed. As these infections mostly are viral , so antibiotics medications have no role ( and we do not have any anti viral medication). Things gradually improve with time with supportive and symptomatic management.
Antibiotic as name suggests is against bacteria ( anti – biotic ).
So giving unnecessary antibiotics, will not make any difference in total duration of illness rather it can cause more harm in form of antibiotic resistance and side effects.
Proper hand washing and maintaining hygiene is best way to protect your child.
Danger signs which we should be careful of are
1. Fast breathing
? > 60 /minutes in children less than 2 months of age
? > 50 in 2 to 12 months
? > 40 in children > 2years
2. Chest indrawing (means to get adequate oxygen into the lungs , child has to put extra efforts andnuse accessory muscles for breathing).
3. Poor oral feeding by child ( apetite in general is decreased in any illness but if not taking even sips of water warrants immediate attention)
4. Poor activity/ lethargy (a child who is irritable and cranky is still better than child who is totally exhausted and not interactive and is dull )
So if above danger signs are present, they are suggestive of severe chest infection. Do not wait and show to your pediatrician immediately.
Another point which I wanted to highlight is that intensity of fever is not always in co relation with severity of illness i.e. severe pneumonia can have low grade fever and simple viral fever can have high grade fever.
But whenever in doubt , it is always better to visit your pediatrician early rather then regret later.
Dr. Rahul varma
“Healthy kids, Happy family”