Something is wrong with little Oliver. He cries easily, he whines and leaves his favorite toys in the closet unnoticed. Has the child upset its stomach? Is it getting the runny nose or is it seriously ill? Every mother at some point sees little warning signs in her child's eyes that immediately make her very worried.
What are the teething troubles?With the classic childhood diseases chickenpox, measles, rubella and scarlet fever, rashes of various types are in the foreground in addition to fever and a general feeling of illness.
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And mostly the guesswork starts: How do you recognize chickenpox? Does whooping cough have a fever? How long is the incubation period? (Time between the entry of pathogens into the body and the first appearance of the disease characteristics.)
Our overview below is intended to bring some order into the mess. But it should not tempt you to try to make the diagnosis from the doctor. Because the manifestations are not always as typical as here.
Even for the doctor, it often takes years of experience to name a disease by its correct name at the first examination. Even the most precise knowledge of the disease should not prevent a mother from consulting the clinical thermometer at the first sign of the disease (you have one in the house?) And from calling the doctor in the event of a fever.
You save yourself reproach, unnecessary worry and restlessness. Nobody can completely protect their children from disease. But you can prevent it, i.e. keep the immune system awake and increase. Cleanliness, fresh air, sun and a sensible diet rich in vitamins are the most important things in addition to avoiding physical and mental overexertion.
Of course, it is not exactly wise to take children with you to visit sick people, especially if you have infectious diseases. If, in spite of all caution, your child has had a childhood illness, albeit a minor one, never let him get up too early. Even the slightest illness weakens the body and makes it far more susceptible to consequences than it normally would be.
- Redness of the throat and tonsils
- Swelling of the tonsils and possibly also the lymph glands at the angle of the jaw or neck
- Pain and tickling in the throat, especially when swallowing
- Fever, chills, headache, fatigue
- Resilience in nature and play outside in any weather
- Segregation of the sick
- Avoid hypothermia (keep feet warm)
- With frequent occurrence: tonsil surgery
- Fever, restlessness, earache (it may also hurt when you touch the ear, stinging in the ear)
- Hearing loss
- Discharge of fluid or pus
- Avoid colds and definitely isolate them from people who have them
Mumps (goat peter)
Incubation period: 6 to 22 days.
- Swelling of one or both halves of your face
- the earlobe stands out
- Slight fever, moderate disturbance of general condition
- Difficulty chewing and opening the mouth
- Pressure pain in front of the ear
- Separate healthy children from sick ones
- There is still a possibility of infection some time after the disease has subsided
Incubation period: 8 to 15 days. Symptoms:
- Initially a harmless cough, then convulsive coughing fits (especially at night) with red-blue coloring of the face and loud drawing in of air after the cough
- Little or no fever
- Loss of appetite after about 14 days
- The usual cough is replaced by convulsive coughing fits with expectoration of mucus
- partial vomiting and often severe shortness of breath
- Get vaccination against whooping cough
Incubation period: 13 to 15 days.
- Round, later jagged, rather dark red spots, first on the face and behind the ears, then finally all over the body
- Pre-stage: changing fever, inflammatory symptoms (runny nose, bronchitis, conjunctivitis)
- After 3 to 4 days, raised, large-spotted rash spreading all over the body
- Isolation of healthy from sick children
- Immunization by vaccination with the correct measles convalescent serum
Incubation period: 3 to 6 days.
- Steep rise in temperature, chills, vomiting
- dense red dots on the neck, on the chest and in the crook of the thighs
- the face remains free in the area around the mouth
- high pulse and often cramps in young children
- Sore throat and difficulty swallowing
- small spotted, initially tart, later flaming red rash
- Preventive vaccination with scarlet vaccine
- Separation of the healthy children from the sick and relatives
Incubation period: 2 to 6 days.
- Nausea, fatigue, often abdominal pain
- Swelling and reddening of the pharynx and tonsils, gray-white coating
- Poor general health, high pulse at a relatively low temperature
- initially only minor sore throat, often sweetish, rotten bad breath
- Best of all through a diphtheria vaccination
Incubation period 14 to 21 days.
- Pinhead to lentil-sized, severely itchy red spots on the body, possibly also on the mucous membranes of the oral cavity, which quickly turn into vesicles
- little or no fever
- A rash that spreads rapidly over the body and the blisters dry out to form a dent
- Unfortunately, the sick can rarely be isolated early enough
Symptoms, ailments & signs
With the classic childhood diseases chickenpox, measles, rubella and scarlet fever, rashes of various types are in the foreground in addition to fever and a general feeling of illness. Measles is often associated with conjunctivitis, sensitivity to light, headache and cough, and the patchy rash spreads all over the body. Redness and whitish spots on the mucous membrane of the mouth and cheek are also typical.
Rubella begins with flu-like symptoms, the lymph nodes in the neck and behind the ears are swollen. The blotchy rash is less pronounced than with measles, the body temperature rises only slightly. Typical of chickenpox are red pustules that appear on the trunk, which first turn into very itchy blisters and then crust and fall off.
Scarlet fever manifests itself as a sudden high fever, very severe sore throat, swollen lymph nodes in the neck and a velvety skin rash. Before the typical "raspberry tongue" appears, white coatings can be seen on the tongue. In the case of mumps, unspecific symptoms such as fatigue, headache and body aches appear first, and the body temperature can be increased.
After two to three days, the swelling of the parotid glands typical for the disease appears, and chewing and swallowing become increasingly painful. Whooping cough is characterized by convulsive coughing fits that are accompanied by severe shortness of breath.
Teething diseases can be very different and lead to different complications and complaints. As a rule, childhood diseases should be treated and examined in any case so that complications do not arise in the further course of life. In most cases, the symptoms can be limited relatively well.
Very often, patients suffer from inflammation of the tonsils or ears. Without treatment, breathing problems or hearing loss can occur. The treatment itself does not lead to any particular complications and can be carried out relatively easily. Vaccinations are available against other childhood diseases to protect children from these diseases.
This basically avoids complications. If childhood illnesses are not treated properly or at an early stage, they can, in the worst case, lead to death or irreversible consequential damage. The patients often suffer from a fever and symptoms of a flu or a cold.
It can also lead to a general feeling of illness and decreased resilience. It is not uncommon for children to suffer from stomach problems, which usually heal relatively well and do not lead to particular complications. Treatment does not usually reduce life expectancy.
When should you go to the doctor?
Since childhood diseases are highly contagious diseases, a doctor should be consulted as soon as possible at the first signs. Every childhood illness has individual symptoms that need to be investigated. What they all have in common is a loss of drive, a mostly whiny appearance and a general malaise. If there are changes in the complexion, the formation of poplars or pustules or discoloration of the skin, a doctor is required.
Fever, sweating, fatigue and an increased need for sleep are indications that a doctor should be consulted for clarification. If there are behavioral problems, a refusal to eat or a reduced need to play, further investigations are necessary to clarify the cause. Severe cough, colored sputum, reddening of the mucous membranes and swollen lymph must be examined by a doctor. If the child has pain, chills, or swollen tonsils, a doctor should be consulted.
In most cases, the symptoms increase in scope and intensity within a short period of time. Skin changes spread over the body and the child increasingly shows a weakened appearance. As soon as there is disinterest, inner restlessness and swelling appear on the body and a reduction in hearing ability is noticeable, a doctor must be consulted.
Doctors & therapists in your area
There is a wide variety of teething troubles, and they are often uncomplicated. Follow-up care is similar and in most cases refers to boosting the immune systems of the young patients. This can be successfully implemented with a whole range of measures.
First of all, fever-free children outside the contagious phase of their illness are allowed to go outside again to get fresh air. Appropriate clothing, especially in cool weather, is essential. It is also important to have a healthy diet rich in vitamins and drink sufficient amounts. Fruit and vegetables, water and herbal teas are ideal in this context.
Sufficient sleep is also important so that the organism can recover from the stress of the respective childhood illness. After recovery, children should wait a little longer to exercise until they are really fit again. However, there is usually nothing wrong with going for a walk or other lightly dosed activities. Avoid drafts as well as excessive sweating.
For example, when children take a bath, windows should be closed during and afterwards. Fresh air, on the other hand, is particularly popular in the bedrooms, which should not always be properly ventilated. When the children have completely recovered, the organism can slowly be rebuilt in its condition through movement.
Outlook & forecast
The prognosis for childhood diseases is usually favorable thanks to today's medical possibilities. If a doctor is consulted at an early stage, the symptoms are usually alleviated within a short time. Recovery occurs within a few weeks. For some childhood diseases, vaccinations are used that are given to the child at an early stage. These prevent the disease from breaking out. Without the vaccinations or early treatment, some of the childhood illnesses can be fatal to this day. It is therefore particularly important to seek the help and support of a doctor.
In most cases the teething problems heal completely. However, complications or sequelae are possible. Most of these depend on the stage of the disease at the start of treatment. The further a disease has progressed, the more unfavorable the further course becomes. In addition, with the known childhood diseases there is always an increased risk of infection. If these diseases break out in adults, the course of the disease is usually less favorable than in children. The healing process is longer and the risk of complications is significantly increased. People with a weakened immune system and pregnant women are particularly at risk. In order to avoid an emergency situation, these risk groups should use the possibilities of the health system as soon as the first irregularities occur.
You can do that yourself
If you suspect a childhood disease, you should first see a doctor in order to initiate appropriate treatment and to identify impending complications in good time.
In home care, it is first and foremost important to separate the sick child in order to avoid transmission to others. Bed rest, lots of sleep, and adequate hydration promote healing. Herbal teas that contain anti-inflammatory medicinal herbs such as chamomile, sage or elderflower are particularly suitable as thirst quenchers; for children over one year old, they can be sweetened with a little honey. The tried and tested chicken soup is also recommended. High fever can be reduced by applying cold calf compresses with vinegar water or wiping with a wet washcloth - this type of cooling is not advisable if the child is cold. Itchy rashes can be treated with special ointments or creams; in the case of chickenpox, wearing light cotton gloves prevents the blisters from scratching.
The painful swelling of the glands is characteristic of mumps. Quark compresses or heat compresses have a pain-relieving effect in many cases. Measles is often associated with conjunctivitis and high sensitivity to light, so the hospital room should be darkened. Eye strain by watching TV or reading should also be avoided. In the case of whooping cough, moist room air makes breathing easier, and homemade onion juice with honey also provides relief.