Winter Illnesses In Children: Everything All Parents Need To Know

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As a famous TV show puts it: winter is coming. It might only just be fall, but winter is nipping at the heels of the new season. Before you know it, we’ll all be plunged into short days, cold nights, and wondering if shivering counts as exercise. (It sort of does actually, if anyone was wondering…)

So yes, winter. It’s coming — and that means the winter illnesses are likely already gearing up to launch a full-frontal attack. This is of particular concern when you’re a parent, as you’re unlikely to get through the season without your children experiencing at least one malady.

Below, let’s examine the most common childhood illnesses — and what you, as a worried parent, need to do should your child show symptoms.

 

Asthma: Worsening Of Existing Symptoms

What Is It?

Asthma is a chronic condition that involves inflammation of the lungs. The severity can vary hugely, from those who only suffer occasional symptoms to those whose asthma is so severe it can prove fatal.

You may be wondering why a chronic condition is being mentioned as a winter illness; don’t worry, there’s good reason for it. Many children will experience more asthma symptoms in winter due to cold air, which irritates the already-inflamed lungs. So while the condition isn’t winter specific, it’s definitely worse during the colder months of the year — so it’s worth noting.

 

What Are The Symptoms?

Coughing, wheezing, and shortness of breath, particularly after exercise or exposure to cold air.

 

Do You Need To See A Doctor?

Yes. Though most cases of asthma are not serious, the illness can be managed well with medications and inhalers.

 

What Can Be Done About It?

Aside from conventional medication options, there are a few things you can do to ease your child’s symptoms during the winter months. The most obvious is to limit their exposure to cold air. This means ensuring you keep your heating on, ideally to a temperature of at least 64F/18C. Maintaining this temperature throughout winter can make a big difference for your child, though it is expensive in terms of fuel bills.

If the cost is a problem for you, you do have options. It’s worth investigating whether alternative fuel systems might work for you; propane and oil are worth considering, and Quarles delivered fuels can ensure you never run low. If you have electric heating, then it’s always worth telling your supplier about your child’s health and asking if there is anything they can do with regards to a cheaper tariff.

If your child experiences symptoms while outdoors, bring them inside as quickly as possible — and always have a reliever inhaler on hand.

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