Right from infancy to adolescence, the childhood phase of life is one of extreme fragility. Children are exposed to a multiplex of health challenges of different complexities, ranging from simple colds to bacterial infections and even cancers. The World Health Organization (WHO) has continued to advocate for improved children’s health especially in third world countries where health care remains dismal.
During childhood, the body’s defense is not well established to avert some of the serious invasions. However, thanks to scientific advancement; immunization has been a remarkable step in offering a bullet-proof shield against what would otherwise make childhood a disaster.
Even with these innovations, the health of children still remains at risk of other infirmities. This article will delve in the common health conditions among a group so innocent to defend itself from potentially life ending conditions.
Colic is a frequent, prolonged and intense crying or fussiness in a healthy infant. Colic can be particularly frustrating for parents because the baby’s distress occurs for no apparent reason and no amount of consoling seems to bring any relief. This however tends to decline after 4 to 6 months.
The demonstrated and suggested causes of colic may include milk protein allergy, gastroesophageal reflux disease, no burping after feeding among others. Mothers should not worry too much. Dietary changes, behavioral changes, lactobacillus probiotics and simethicone may improve the situation.
- Common cold
Common colds are caused by Rhinovirus. Many children suffer from 6 to 8 common cold episodes a year, each episode lasting up to 10 days. Symptoms include runny nose, congestion, cough and fevers of up to 38-390 C. This causes a lot of discomfort and children often cry as a consequence. Saline nasal drops relieve the congestion and multivitamins improve the body’s defense system. Always consult a doctor before buying any drugs to manage common colds.
- Skin conditions
The common skin disorders in children include rashes, eczema, diaper rash, measles, chicken pox and seborrheic dermatitis. These cause a lot of discomfort and pain to the young one. Consult a pediatrician for proper diagnosis and treatment.
- Bacterial infections.
Children are at risk of bacterial infection in many body systems such as urinary tract, gastrointestinal tract, respiratory tract, Ear Nose and Throat (ENT) among others. Fever, loss of appetite and weight loss often follow after bacterial infection. A thorough blood check and review by a pediatrician followed by course of antibiotics always does the trick. Caution! Do not self-prescribe in managing children’s infections. Many antibiotics are not safe for children and may not be suitable in managing certain infections.
This is one of the common causes of infant mortality in children under 5 years. Measures need to be taken in order to prevent malaria. Ensure that children sleep under treated mosquito nets and report symptoms such as vomiting, fever, loss of appetite for laboratory investigations by the doctor as soon as possible.
Make your childhood worthwhile by taking care of your child’s health. Happy World children’s day (20th November)