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When you have a baby, take it for granted that you will have to deal with sickness at some point in time. Most of the time, the baby will be suffering from something minor that does not even require a trip to the doctor. But there will be times that rushing to the hospital with your sick little one becomes inevitable.
The difficulty with a baby or a child's sickness is that it is hard to find out what is ailing him/her. They have only their cries to communicate their problems with you and it becomes the parent's job to decipher whether they are crying because they need to be fed or are feeling ill.
As the baby begins to toddle, it becomes more difficult. They might communicate more than when they were a baby, but they can downplay or exaggerate a symptom they may have. For instance, a minor bump on the head may have your toddler screaming his lungs out but a loss of weight or an ache might go ignored when they are preoccupied with their play time.
No matter what the age of the child is, it is the duty and responsibility of the parents to be on the lookout for symptoms of ill health in the baby. Today, we shall take a look at a few of the symptoms that must never be ignored if seen in your baby.
Make sure to talk to the doctor immediately about your baby's health if any of these symptoms are seen in your child.
While a fever is not to cause a lot of worries when it is in an older child, a baby with a fever must never be ignored. If your baby is less than 4 months of age, a temperature of over 38 degree Celsius can be dangerous. In babies older than 4 months, you must pay attention to how the baby behaves during the fever. If the baby is active and does not show any behavioural changes, you do not need to worry.
• Breathing Problems
You should always be mindful of your baby's breathing. If your baby is breathing faster and harder than normal or seems to be working hard to breathe, it should raise a red flag. Look for the flaring of the baby's nostrils and if the skin around or in the rib cage is being sucked in while breathing. Also, keep an eye out for greying or paling of the skin and a whistling noise while breathing.
All of the above can be signs of conditions like asthma, croup, pneumonia or bronchitis. Take your child to your doctor as soon as possible.
• Green Or Yellow-coloured Vomit
Your baby will vomit a lot during the first few years of his/her life. But if he/she is bringing up green or yellow bile, you need to be worried, as this can be the sign of blocked intestines. There may be other reasons like congenital abnormalities, twisted bower or blockage of meconium. No matter what the reason, your baby will need an immediate medical attention.
• Blue Lips
Blue lips of cyanosis in your baby must not be ignored, as it is caused by the deficiency in oxygen in the blood or due to an issue with the circulation. There are chances that the baby may have a heart disease, asthma or pneumonia if he/she exhibits a blue colour of the skin. Sometimes, the blue colour can also be accompanied by tiredness or other neurological symptoms. All of these symptoms should be brought to a doctor's notice immediately.
• Too Much Thirst
It is indeed a good thing if your baby of more than 6 months of age loves water. But be wary if your baby can't get enough of it all of a sudden. Expect the baby's thirst to go up if it is the summer or if the baby has been exceptionally active on that particular day. But if the baby wants a sip of fluid at every possible time, talk to your doctor about it, as it can be because of type one diabetes. Other symptoms of diabetes are weight loss, too much of hunger, fatigue and increased urinary volume and frequency.
Cuts and wounds are a part of childhood. It is only natural that your child is faced with a lot of bleeding issues. If the bleeding doesn't stop, you must take him/her to a doctor. Till you can meet your doctor, place a clean cloth and apply gentle pressure. If the bleeding stops, keep the injury clean and covered until delivery.
If at all possible, keep a close eye at your baby's urinary functions. Unless your baby is sick or it is the summer season, the amount of urine must not be reduced. Also, look out for blood or pus in your baby's diaper. The baby's fontanelle must not be depressed and the skin must not be shrunken, as it signals dehydration. Blood in the diaper also points to urinary infection. Medical care must be made available to your baby as soon as possible.
• Weight Loss
If your baby has lost more than 7 percent of his/her body weight, it should ring some warning bells. Wait for ten more days and see if the baby gains all that weight back. If he/she doesn't, take him/her to the doctor the very next day. While loss of weight isn't a disease in itself, it can be the indicator of a severe underlying problem.