There is nothing better than seeing the bright smile of a baby as he gazes up at you. Babies are tremendous blessings that bring immense joy into a family’s life. However, just as children and adults experience sickness and pain, so do babies. Unfortunately, they can’t communicate and tell you what’s wrong, you have to interpret their pain on your own.
As babies grow, there are many common health problems they experience. Here are a few your child may experience and what you can do to help soothe the pain.
Many babies begin teething at six months old, but it isn’t uncommon to start sooner. There are several signs of teething including sore and swelling gums. They may also be putting more things in their mouth than usual, and you will constantly find them drooling. In addition, because of the pain, a calm and mellow baby may be much more fussy and upset than usual. Sleep may also be disrupted because of the pain.
There are many toys designed to soothe babies while teething including teething rings and blankets. You can also freeze damp dishcloths and let your baby chew on them. Many parents choose to give their child pain reliever to handle the pain. If you do provide medicine, make sure you give her the recommended amount for her age.
When a baby is constipated, it can break a parent’s heart. Constipation can be very painful and upsetting to a child. It can disrupt sleep, cause intense tummy aches and excessive fussiness. There is no set amount of bowel movements a baby should pass, so you must watch closely to your child’s bowel movements to determine if he is constipated. Constipation can occur from a change in eating habits, his activity level or other issues.
Symptoms of constipation can include a lack of bowel movements for several days, dry, hard stools, or crying and fussiness when trying to pass a movement. If your child is constipated, there are several options. Give your child plenty of fluids. If your baby is old enough to eat baby food or table food, feed him plenty of apples, prunes and other foods rich in fiber.
Ear infections can be miserable for both baby and parents. These often occur right after a cold or sinus infection and can be accompanied with a fever. Several symptoms of an ear infection is the baby is frequently tugging or pulling at his ear, he has difficulty sleeping, loss of appetite and even fluid coming from the ear. If you believe your child may have an ear infection, you will want to visit a doctor. Antibiotics are often prescribed, and you will want to get those started quickly to help relieve the pain and clear the infection.
Eczema is a type of rash that includes small red bumps. In extreme cases, these bumps can become infected and release puss. This rash can become itchy, which is just one reason it makes the baby miserable. Many children may experience eczema because it is an inherited health problem. Most young children experience it because their parents or another close family member has had it.
The best way to prevent eczema and large flare ups is to simply take care of your baby’s skin. Keep the skin hydrated by using a good lotion. Be cautious of how laundry soaps and bath soaps react to your baby’s skin. If any rashes do appear, closely monitor them. If needed, visit a specialist before any infections surface.
Thrush is a yeast infection inside of your baby’s mouth. It appears as large white patches inside the mouth. If your child develops thrush, be cautious because it can be passed from one individual to another. Mild cases of thrush usually heal on their own, but if it is more serious, visit your doctor. They may prescribe an antibiotic to help speed up the process.
When your baby can’t tell you what is wrong, it can be a miserable time for both you and your child. By taking time to learn common health issues you may see as a parent, you can relieve some anxiety and know what to do when problems do arise.
Courtnie is an editor for FamilyShare.com and has a degree in journalism. She has a slight obsession with running, newspapers and large fuzzy blankets. She currently lives in Idaho with her husband and two sons.