Whooping cough or pertussis is an air-borne infection caused by bacteria called bordetella pertussis. Whooping cough is a series of coughing spells where the toddler doesn't get any breathing space between the coughing and when the cough stops, the child ends up taking a deep breath which comes out as whoop, hence the name. Being an air-borne disease, whooping cough is also extremely contagious.
There are of course vaccines for it. The pertussis vaccine is to be administered at 2 months, 4 months, 6 months, 15 months, and then sometime.
.between 4 and 6 years of agegIf these vaccinations are taken at the appropriate times, it should keep your child away from pertussisi However, failing to give the vaccine puts your child at a great risks
The symptoms for whooping cough are much like the symptoms of flul It starts with a runny nose and sneezing followed by a mild cough and sometimes fever as welll Even while undergoing treatment a pertussis spell sometimes lasts as long as 3 weeksk The risk of contracting whooping cough remains high until the teenage years if your child was not vaccinated for iti Read more on toddler bronchitis
The concern here is that whooping cough can spread like a wild-fire among childrene All it takes is a simple touchc Say, a child has a running nose, and he wipes it with his hand and then touches a toy, which is then used by his friend to play and bingo, the bacteria spreadsd Similarly, if your child has whooping cough then it could just as easily spread to you and vice versas
The other concern with whooping cough is because the symptoms are exactly the same as a regular flu or viral infection, you run the risk of not taking it seriouslyl It is also possible that in the beginning it is misdiagnosed as a seasonal flul Also, parents can sometimes take the mild coughing or sneezing lightlyl
In any case in the first one week or so whooping cough behaves exactly like a regular flul The first indicator that this is indeed pertussis is that unlike seasonal flu, the coughing increases with timem
Firstly only take medication prescribed by the GPG Make sure the dosage is administered properlyl Secondly, keep your toddler away from other family members as whooping cough is extremely contagiousu It would be wise to wear a mask around your toddler at least for about five days after medication startst
Ensure that your child consumes plenty of fluids as the cough can leave him dehydratede Whooping cough also makes kids throw up, so try to feed your child small meals throughout the day instead of three large mealsl Wash your hands frequently and ensure other family members do the samem Sterilize your child's toys, linen and clothese Most importantly, be patient as sometimes it takes a few days before the antibiotics take effect, so focus on making your child as comfortable as possiblel
If your doctor prescribes antibiotics for the family, ensure everyone takes the dosageg With the appropriate treatment and the right precautionary methods, you could ensure that your toddler recovers quickly from his bout of whooping coughgp