Baby and Minor Ailments

There comes a time in all homes when a child becomes ill.

Parents must be aware at all times. Babies can become ill very quickly and you should trust your own assessment.

Remain rational so that you can plan your action.

Does baby have a temperature; does the skin feel hotter than normal?

If the temperature is your finding, your first reaction is to cool the body down. Take off excessive blankets and/or clothing and if necessary get you baby into a cool bath or shower. Once you have cooled your baby down you can call your health professional to get further instructions.

Does your baby have a running tummy or vomiting or both?  Assess the extent of the fluid loss. Start immediately to replace the fluid that baby is loosing. If the diarrhoea and/or vomiting persists or is severe you must seek professional advice as soon as possible.

Diarrhoea and/or vomiting can be associated with a dietary reaction. You will know if baby has eaten something new. Stop the causative ingredient the condition usually reverts to normal.

A common problem is teething. Some babies experience no problems at all and teeth just appear in the gums.

Many doctors will tell you that teething is natural and no problems should be experienced, but ask any ten mothers with children and they will give you a different picture.

Before the teeth actually erupt the gums itch and baby is sometimes irritable and restless. They chew on everything and don’t seem to get relief. Give them something to chew on. There are several types of teething rings on the market. The rings which are kept in the freezer, I  found most helpful. A rusk to chew on, will give the older baby relief. Your pharmicist can also recommend a gel or cream to rub on the swollen gum.

Some babies develop a running tummy from teething. Usually this diarrhoea is easily controlled. Give grated apples, mashed bananas or maize cereal to help form the stools and don’t forget to replace the lost fluids. Apply extra cream to the red buttocks.

Always get professional help if you are unsure.

Act quickly and calmly and your baby will soon be back to health.

© Teresa Denton.

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