There are numerous contagious and infectious illnesses that pose significant threats to your babies. Most of the common diseases in children are either viral or due to negligence. Some general guidelines are similar for the prevention of most childhood sickness. These guidelines change with advancements over the years. The current sickness prevention guidelines have proven quite efficient if adequately implemented. While some diseases found in children still exist, with modern medicines, some have been almost eliminated.
Being aware of the precautions and recognizing their early symptoms is vital. Since most childhood sicknesses are communicable, preventing the spread is the key. Learning and spreading the knowledge of general hygiene and health practices can help prevent most of these conditions. This article aims to guide the general population, especially those who have regular interaction with children, about proper prevention acts (1).
The following topics will lead us.
Basic prevention guidelines for childhood diseases
- Maintain hygiene
- Vaccinate in time
- Consider breastfeeding
- Sleep is important
- Address your health
- Be aware of common symptoms
Let us begin!
Basic prevention guidelines for childhood diseases
These are specific basic guidelines that can prevent almost any common diseases in children. They aren’t very complicated and can be easily understood by the common masses.
One leading cause of the entry of foreign bodies is unhealthy living habits. Most common diseases in children occur due to viral/bacterial infections. Maintaining hygiene, especially washing hands, is very useful in terminating viruses and bacteria from entering your body (2). CDC also found that washing your hands for at least 20 seconds was most effective. This does not mean that you need to wash your hands every now and then.
Train your young ones to wash their hands whenever in contact with an outside surface and before meals. If they do not have water around, any alcohol-based hand sanitizer works to abolish the germs. Apart from washing hands, make your children used to cover coughs and sneezes. Many guidelines suggest that dabbing while coughing or sneezing is the most effective.
Vaccinate in time
Although newborns are more vulnerable to infections due to their underdeveloped immunity, they do have some. Infants imbibe some passive immunity from their beholders, which is transmitted via the placenta.
However, this immunization does not last for very long. This is why child immunizations are so necessary (3). Vaccinations start very early, from almost two months old. Some standard vaccinations your child needs are:
- Hepatitis B
- Polio (IPV)
- Pneumococcal (PCV)
- Diphtheria, tetanus, and whooping cough/pertussis (DTaP)
- Rotavirus (RV)
- Haemophilus Influenzae Type B (Hib)
If you are comfortable and can breastfeed, it is a healthy practice for your child. Natural breast milk will provide the baby with plenty of germ-killing antibodies (4). Doctors suggest mothers breastfeed whenever possible, especially if the baby is premature. Your baby can battle the most common diseases in children with the antibodies the natural milk provides.
Furthermore, breastfeeding also reduces the risk of developing SIDS. Sudden Infant Death Syndrome and childhood leukemia are two horrific complications that can affect infants very early and even cause death. Breastfeeding your baby for six months is said to be ideal, but anything extra is also beneficial (5).
Sleep is important
Just like adults, infants also require adequate sleep. With good sleep comes good health (6). Maintaining a proper sleep pattern is essential. Make sure your child is not awake late at night or sleeping till the afternoon. Adequate and uninterrupted sleep is also a time when your immunity boosts and is most effective. This is why most children with any childhood sickness tend to sleep a lot.
Address your health
In the process of caring for and protecting your baby, do not neglect your own health. A mother or parent needs to maintain proper health for their child’s benefit. If you are sick, you cannot breastfeed or take appropriate care of your child.
Ensure a healthy lifestyle and hygiene practices to make your child aware of them from infancy itself. Take a break, get some fresh air. Because if you are healthy, your child is likely to be the same.
Be aware of common symptoms
Even after being very careful, some common diseases in children are inevitable. Thus knowing the symptoms and identifying them early is crucial. Here are some of the conventional warning signs you need to be aware of.
- Cough (can be dry too)
- Stomach aches or diarrhea
- Abdominal pain
- Swollen lymph glands
- Overall nausea
- Sore throat
- Excessive drooling (mostly in infants)
Although these signs may indicate the contracting of a childhood sickness but diagnosing the illness is difficult. Maintaining proper contact with your child’s health practitioner is vital to notice minute health changes.
While most of these symptoms are similar to that of the common cold, they might also indicate something more severe. If you detect any of the above warning signs in your child, it is best to keep them aloof of contact with others till they recover.
This article provides a general take on the prevention of common diseases in children. Nowadays, it is easier for ordinary people to know about several diagnoses with developing medical facilities. Taking swift and immediate action may be the difference between saving a life or preventing the contamination spread.
Michael is a health blogger with 8 years of experience in counseling and helping people around the world, offering effective and efficient solutions for a healthy lifestyle. He started blogging in 2010 and also uses C4H recently as a platform to exchange views, thoughts, and questions about parenting, family, self-improvement, relationship, health, lifestyle, blogging, and other related aspects of life.