Skip to content

Children's Health

Font Size
A
A
A

9 Childhood Illnesses: Get the Facts

Croup

Croup targets the windpipe and voice box. It is most often caused by viruses, and lasts for a week or less.

Symptoms:

  • Usually starts with a sudden onset of barky cough and stridor, which gets worse at night 
  • Runny nose
  • Fever
  • Other cold-like symptoms

Use a cool mist humidifier or run a hot shower, and sit with your child in the steamed-up bathroom for 10 minutes. "Breathing in moist air is always good," Edwards says.  

Also if it is a cool, moist night take your child outside with a coat and hat and let her breathe in the night air.

If your child is having trouble breathing, having noisy breathing, or not eating or drinking well, call 911 or go to the emergency room. Steroids, cool mist and breathing treatments are sometimes given to decrease airway swelling.

Scarlet Fever

This bacterial infection is caused by group A strep.  (It was once a deadly disease, but now it’s easily treatable.)

Symptoms:

  • Sore throat
  • Scarlet-colored rash around the neck and face that may spread to the rest of the body.

If your child has a sore throat and rash, call the doctor. If the strep test is positive, then it is important to treat it with a round of antibiotics to prevent rare but serious complications.

Impetigo

This skin infection is most common in younger children. It starts when staph or strep bacteria gets in a cut, scratch, or bite.

It can affect any area of the body but happens most often around the mouth, nose, and hands. Babies sometimes get the irritation in their diaper area.

Symptoms:

  • Tiny blisters that burst. Fluid from the sores creates a crust that looks like a coat of honey.

Touching or scratching the sores, which can be itchy, spreads impetigo to other parts of the body and to other people.

An antibiotic ointment, and sometimes an oral antibiotic, can treat it.

Today on WebMD

child with red rash on cheeks
What’s that rash?
plate of fruit and veggies
How healthy is your child’s diet?
 
smiling baby
Treating diarrhea, fever and more.
Middle school band practice
Understanding your child’s changing body.
 

worried kid
fitArticle
jennifer aniston
Slideshow
 
Measles virus
Article
sick child
Slideshow
 

Loaded with tips to help you avoid food allergy triggers.

Loading ...

Sending your email...

This feature is temporarily unavailable. Please try again later.

Thanks!

Now check your email account on your mobile phone to download your new app.

babyapp
New
Child with adhd
Slideshow
 
rl with friends
fitSlideshow
Syringes and graph illustration
Tool