Shaken Baby Syndrome

A large number of child deaths are reported in South Africa each year. A lot of deaths relate to neglect, abuse or murder. Despite this, there's a knowledge gap in relation to understanding the issue....

Amniotic fluid problems

The importance of amniotic fluid Amniotic fluid is essential for pregnancy and foetal development. Amniotic fluid is a watery substances residing inside a casing called the amniotic membrane or sac. ...

Choosing a pre-school

Becoming a parent is a momentous; life-changing event filled with hopes, expectations and naturally some fears. Parents often learn and grow alongside their children, as they face the challenges of pa...

Newborn reflexes

Although newborn babies are physically helpless and vulnerable at birth, they have a number of amazing innate abilities or reflexes. Reflexes are involuntary movements or actions, designed to protect ...

Mastitis

Mastitis is an inflammation of the breast that can lead to infection. The word “mastitis” is derived from the Greek word “mastos” meaning “breasts”, while the suffix “-itis” denotes “inflammation”. Ma...

Pelvic floor exercises

Although your new baby will probably bring you immense emotional satisfaction, physically you may feel uncomfortable and strange in your own skin. After 9 months of pregnancy and hormonal changes, you...

Colic

Babies cry because they need to communicate something and most parents, especially new moms, find it distressing to see or hear an unhappy baby. In time, you will learn to recognize the various causes...

Antenatal Classes

Antenatal classes are informative sessions provided to prepare expecting parents for the birth of their child and the early days of being a parent.Most antenatal classes are run by Midwives and occasi...

Strap-in-the-Future

The Decade of Action for Road Safety 2011-2020 was launched on the 11 May 2011. It is a global declaration of war against road crashes and fatalities. According to Mr Sibusiso Ndebele, MP Minister of ...

  • Shaken Baby Syndrome

    Tuesday, 21 July 2015 16:28
  • Amniotic fluid problems

    Thursday, 14 May 2015 12:54
  • Choosing a pre-school

    Friday, 10 April 2015 17:50
  • Newborn reflexes

    Tuesday, 03 March 2015 15:49
  • Mastitis

    Tuesday, 03 March 2015 15:41
  • Pelvic floor exercises

    Wednesday, 11 February 2015 17:20
  • Colic

    Wednesday, 11 February 2015 17:11
  • Antenatal Classes

    Monday, 03 June 2013 09:34
  • Strap-in-the-Future

    Thursday, 30 June 2011 13:52

Sore Throat

Causes

Sore throats can be caused by several factors:

·                One of the most common factors includes viruses that cause a sore throat as part of an URI, such as the common cold.

·                Throat infections can also be bacterial in nature; for example, the streptococcal bacterium is responsible for causing a strep throat.

·                Postnasal drip and coughing may also irritate the throat.

·                Other common causes that are not related to infection include breathing dry air through the mouth, especially in winter; allergies such as allergic rhinitis; and in rare cases young children may have a foreign object (toy, coin, food) stuck in the throat, oesophagus, or respiratory tract (Wald, 2008).

 

Symptoms

·         Sore, inflamed throat

·         Fever

·         Hoarseness

·         Difficulty swallowing

·         Enlarged, tender glands in the neck

·         Earache

·         Red, swollen tonsils that are covered in a whitish material (tonsillitis)

·         Painful ulcers inside the mouth and in the throat, usually caused by the herpes virus

·                In rare cases, an abscess known as quinsy may develop around the tonsils, causing a high fever and increased difficulty in swallowing (Collins, 2003; Leary, 1990)

 

Diagnosis

Most cases of sore throat are caused by viruses and do not require medical treatment. However, if your child has an extremely high fever, has recently been exposed to someone with a strep throat, has difficulty swallowing, breathing or opening her mouth, her voice sounds muffled when she talks, or she complains of a stiff neck, contact your doctor immediately (Wald, 2008).

 

Since it may be difficult for your doctor to determine exactly which type of throat infection your child has, due to similarities in symptoms, he may perform a throat culture to confirm his diagnosis, especially if a strep throat is suspected. This test involves your doctor taking a swab of the back and sides of your child’s throat, which is then sent to the lab for analysis (Leary, 1990; Wald, 2008).

 

Treatment

·                Treatment for viral sore throats is aimed at alleviating pain symptoms. Liquid paracetamol or ponstan may be given in appropriate doses to relieve pain and fever. Antibiotics will only be prescribed and form part of an effective treatment plan for sore throats if a bacterial infection is present.

·                Children with sore throats sometimes do not wish to eat or drink because of pain, and vomiting is common because of infected mucus irritating the lining of the stomach. It is therefore imperative to frequently offer your child warm (honey and lemon tea, chicken soup) or cold liquids, in order to avoid dehydration. Honey should never be given to children under the age of 12 months because of the potential risk of botulism poisoning.

·                In older children gargling may help relieve pain. The water must be spat out and not swallowed.

·                Throat lozenges are not recommended for young children, who are at risk for choking. Similarly, throat sprays containing a topical anaesthetic contain ingredients that may cause an allergic reaction and should therefore be avoided.

·                Use a humidifier to increase the moisture in your child’s room.

·                If a child has more than 3 attacks of tonsillitis in a year as a result of a confirmed streptococcal infection, surgical removal of her tonsils may be recommended.

·                Rare cases of quinsy may require the surgical drainage of the abscess on the tonsils in hospital (Collins, 2003; Leary, 1990; Wald, 2008).