Childhood Illness- When to Catch Them

Child illness is an area of growth and development that parents dread.  When you hear that your child is suddenly unwell, it’s inevitable that you will get anxious and concerned. It may make it easier for you if you understand the signs of illness and when to catch them. Let’s dive right in.

Understanding Illness

Children have a low immune system that make them susceptible to falling ill all the time. More often, their temperatures rise as a sign of ‘fever’, which is normally an initial sign that your toddler is fighting off an infection.

Some of the other things you need to know to lessen your worries are:

  • Your child’s temperatures can fluctuate, especially after getting essential vaccines 
  • Your calmness may help your child’s fast healing
  •  Understanding your baby could help sense an irregularity early and take precaution before it worsens
  • Frequent doctor checks will lessen your stress and worries

What to Look out For to Know Your Child is Ill

A sudden change in behavior, fussiness and irritability in your child could signify that your child is coming down with an illness. Some of the common illnesses include: 

  • Colds
  • Cough
  • Ear infections
  • Chicken pox
  • Mouth ulcers or blisters 
  • Rotavirus infection
  • Allergies

Babies don’t talk. So, parents are encouraged to watch out for these changes, which will alert you when you baby needs attention or is unwell:

  • Physical threatening signs 
    1. Lower or higher temperature (normal temperature range is 38°C)
    2. Umbilical Cord Infections
    3. Rashes on the body or wounds inside the mouth
    4. Development of seizures 
    5. Fever
    6. Chest congestion
    7. Trouble breathing
    8. Accidents/Injuries 
    9. Change in skin color (such as pale, bluish or grey arms and legs)
  • Behavioral threatening signs 
    1. Low energy and abnormal drowsiness
    2. Cloth discomfort 
    3. Uncontrollable crying with no reason
    4. Inactiveness
    5. Uneasiness 
  • Feeding and ingestion threatening signs 
    1. Shifting appetite for food or breast milk
    2. Putting a lot of effort to suckle
    3. Dehydration
    4. Sluggish and unresponsive

Can Teething Cause Illness?

Teething out can indicate signs and symptoms of an illness. However, you are advised never to take traditional beliefs literary. If you don’t see a tooth emerging then trust your instincts and visit a child clinic. 

Where to Get Help

The Government of Kenya, in the year 2010, took great concern on child health services in Kenya. With that, child welfare clinics have been introduced at county levels. Parents are encouraged to take their children, especially infants and those of tender ages for regular medical check-ups by qualified doctors for any type of disease and infection.  


#Please note that development differs from one child to another. 

#Content intended for educational purposes only, and should not be substituted for medical advice from your doctor.

Be careful when using any products mentioned on this website. We hold no regulations for such products or their providers.

Last reviewed January 2019

Sources: ncpd, seattlechildrens, webmd, sharecare, sheknows, pickanytwo

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