The common cold, Pneumonia and Influenza (Flu) is a generalized label for all infections of the lungs, ears, nose, and throat that are caused by viruses, fungi, parasites and microorganisms of all kinds. Children are the epicenter for all these things and then some. Even if the child is not of school age or in daycare, they are like human magnets to all things germy. All children get sick and every parent has had the middle of the night panic of not knowing what to do and when. So just when should a parent reach out to a pediatrician?
If you’re like any number of us parents who have asked ourselves that very question, then you know it’s a tricky one. Some people will say call the Ped for anything and everything. If you are a new parent, you get an open pass for all hour’s calls to the doctor. New parents have the luxury of never having to apologize for calling around the clock for anything and everything. No matter what the age of their first born, new parents are always doing things for the first time for that given age. Parents who have been around the block a few times with fevers, vomiting, chills, clogged nasal passages, and the umpteenth belly ache are not as easily forgiven those phone calls. However, if you’ve called about your child having a 101 degree temperature and for the third time in a week and he or she is 8 years old, well then maybe you should start taking some notes.
Which brings me to the “what should we parents do to survive the germ attacks every season?” part of my advice. We parents like to write everything down about our children. Their first tooth, first steps, first skinned knee, first trip to the zoo, but not many of us keep a journal of advice from the Pediatrician. Every time you call the doctor’s office, during or after hours, a nurse calls you back to find out how to help your sick child and worry-filled parenting head. Consider keeping it in a journal for future reference. The next time little Jane or Johnny has a fever of 102 and won’t eat, but is drinking every 30 minutes, then you will know that Nurse Carol told you that you should keep pushing fluids and making sure they are urinating, to give Ibuprophen every 4-6 hours, and maybe suck on small popsicles and crackers if they allow it to buffer the stomach from the medicine. These helpful notes eliminate the need to call each time and also empowers you, the parent, for knowing just what to do. After all, what is parenting but a daily plan of making it up as you go along?
… Turn to page 48-50 in the Fall 2013 issue of Multiplicity Magazine to find a guide for when you should call the doctor for the top 10 ailments that kids face. Do you know how high your child’s fever should be before you worry? What about diarrhea or vomiting?
We wish you a healthy season.
Written by: Angel Rodrigues . Angel has a feminist brain, a thirst for knowledge, and writing is her dirty little secret. She is mom to a 7 year old, 4 year old busy twin boys, and a 2 year old independently spirited young lady. She has been married to the best man on earth for over 14 years and is kept alive by coffee. You can follow her blog or find her on Facebook and Twitter.
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