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4 Common Childhood Illnesses A Pediatrician Can Help Treat

Friday, June 28th, 2019

Child blowing dandelion

There are many illnesses that your child may face as they grow up. A pediatrician can help with identifying and treating these issues. They include chickenpox, colds/coughs, infections, fevers and high temperatures, food allergies, and whooping cough.


Although this illness typically happens in childhood, it can be contracted at any age. It is usually mild, but can be dangerous in certain conditions, so it should be taken seriously. There are no specific treatments, but fever reducers and creams can be used to help with the symptoms. The incubation period is between 10 to 21 days. Your child will be contagious 2 days before symptoms show to around 5 days after the scabs become dry.

Chickenpox, also known as varicella, is a highly contagious disease that can cause red rashes over the entire body. These turn into blisters filled with fluid that will harden into scabs. Other symptoms of this illness include the following.

  • Fever
  • Itchiness
  • Irritability
  • Inflammation

Serious side effects can happen to your child, including pneumonia, dehydration, bacterial skin infections, and bleeding issues. Pregnant women should be especially careful to avoid others with chickenpox, as it can cause fetal malformations and other serious problems.

Coughs, colds, and infections

Coughs, colds, and infections are common among children and aren’t always serious. There are similarities and differences between these issues.


Coughs are often associated with a cold, but this virus isn’t the only thing that results in coughing. Usually, a cough will resolve on its own. As long as your child is eating, drinking, and breathing properly, you don’t have to worry too much. If your child is wheezing or their cough will not go away, you should contact a pediatrician. Other conditions that can result in coughing include whooping cough, pneumonia, asthma, and allergies. Signs of more serious conditions including the following.

  • Coughing throughout the night
  • Discomfort
  • Coughing for longer than 2 weeks
  • High fever
  • Skin color changes to blue or pale

If your child is not breathing normally, you should consult a pediatrician immediately and if they can’t breathe, call 911.


Because there are so many different cold viruses, your child may get a few colds every year. Your child should build up an immunity to colds as they age. If they get a cold, it will usually subside within 5 to 7 days. Be sure to keep your child hydrated and avoid nasal decongestants. Ask your pediatrician about fever and pain reducers, as well as saline nose drops.


These can come from a variety of sources and some are highly contagious. Common infections in babies and children include ear infections, strep throat, tetanus, and skin infections. Some infections can be treated with antibiotics or other medications. Others will just need to heal on their own, or can be prevented with immunizations. Speak with your pediatrician to learn more about infections to look out for.

Whooping cough

This bacterial infection, also known as pertussis, is a serious condition that affects babies and young children. It is highly contagious and can be spread from adults to children. Whooping cough usually starts with mild cold-like symptoms, progress into severe coughing fits with wheezing, and then clear up. Here are some things every parent or parent-to-be should know about pertussis.

  • A vaccination that helps prevent whooping cough (the DTaP immunization) can be given to adults before a baby is due.
  • If someone comes into contact with pertussis, they can be given antibiotics to help prevent spreading it.
  • Symptoms begin to show 1 to 2 weeks after exposure.
  • The condition lasts between 6 and 10 weeks if no serious complications occur.
  • Common symptoms include mild fever, forceful coughing fits, wheezing, vomiting, and pauses in breathing.
  • Dangerous symptoms include bleeding or inflammation in the brain that can result in confusion, brain damage, and seizures.
  • Treatment includes antibiotics or hospitalization in serious cases.

Whooping cough has been worse in the past, but it is still a problem in the United States and around the world. There is a vaccination that can be given to children that helps stop the spread of the virus. If you suspect your child has whooping cough, visit a pediatrician as soon as possible.


Pediatric allergies are common in children and include food allergies, skin allergies, and seasonal allergies.

Food allergies are more likely to develop in babies if there is a family history of eczema, hay fever, food allergies, or asthma. If you slowly introduce different foods into your child’s diet, it may help them build up an immunity to certain foods. Also, if they already have a food allergy, it will help you identify the cause more easily.

Seasonal allergies often show in the spring, summer, and fall and can be caused by a number of things. Pollen and grass are typical allergens, as are dust and dirt. Other allergies can be triggered by candles, perfumes, chlorine in pools, and mold.

Skin allergies are also common in children and can be caused by a number of factors. You may see hives, eczema, and rashes if your child comes into contact with an allergen.

Seeing a pediatrician in Amarillo, Texas

If your child is showing signs of allergies, whooping cough, infections, colds, or chicken pox, a pediatrician can help diagnose and treat the symptoms. Dr. John Young and his Team are here to help you keep your child healthy. You can reach us at (806) 354-0404 ext. 330 or Contact Us by email for more information about Our Services. You can also visit us at 1500 S Coulter St. Suite #3 in Amarillo to speak with our staff.