My Baby Has What?!

ages-stages-baby-march-14By Sandy Pedrogao

Now that you have a little one to take care of, you may have already heard of some common ailments that sound a little bit scary to you. But fear not, your baby will be OK and your parenting community is here to support you!

Here is a helpful glossary of common ailments that may affect your infant:

Acute Otitis Media: A common type of ear infection. Symptoms include pain, fever and red eardrums. Can be cured homeopathically or with the use of antibiotics.

Colic: An otherwise healthy baby from the ages of a few weeks to three months old who suddenly cries inconsolably. The crying is usually high pitched and occurs at the same time of day (usually afternoon or evening) and lasts anywhere from minutes to three hours or more, three days a week, for more than three weeks.

Cradle Cap: A skin condition in babies characterized by a yellowish or brownish scaly buildup on the head; may also be accompanied by redness in the creases of the skin.

Eczema: An inflammation of the skin, usually causing itching and sometimes accompanied by crusting, scaling or blisters.

Febrile Seizure: A convulsion or seizure that occurs in infants and young children caused by a sudden spike in body temperature.

Fifth Disease: Also known as “slapped cheek syndrome,” this is a viral illness resembling the flu with a red rash across their cheeks and on their torso, arms and legs.

Hand, Foot and Mouth Disease: A viral illness commonly found in infants and children under five. Symptoms include a skin rash, fever and mouth sores.

Jaundice: A common condition in newborn babies, which usually appears within the first week of life. It’s marked by yellowing of the skin and eyes caused by the immature liver’s inability to process excess red blood cells.

Pink Eye or Conjunctivitis: An infection of the inner eyelids and surrounding tissues of the eye. It can cause redness, itching, inflammation or swelling, and a clear or white, yellow, or greenish gooey liquid to collect in the eyes.

Roseola: A mild viral disease affecting children between the ages of six months and two years, characterized by fever lasting three days, followed by an eruption of rose-coloured spots.

Rotavirus: An infection of the digestive tract. It is the most common cause of severe diarrhea in infants and young children.

Thrush: A yeast infection occurring in the mouth or mucous membranes of a newborn infant, which can also be passed to the mother’s nipples during breastfeeding.

Varicella: A herpes virus that causes chicken pox and shingles.

Whooping Cough: A highly contagious infection of the respiratory system characterized by a severe cough that makes it difficult to breathe. It is one of the leading causes of vaccine-preventable deaths. Virtually all deaths occur in children under one year of age.

Be sure to take your baby to his or her regular well-baby visits with their pediatrician and don’t be afraid to ask questions, no matter how silly you may think they are. Your baby’s pediatrician has a wealth of information to share with you!

Sandy Pedrogao is the editor and co-founder of Oh Baby! Magazine and She is also the co-producer of The Baby Show, Ottawa’s largest early parenting show. When she’s not running her business and parenting her two children as best she can, she can usually be found enjoying real life or online conversation.

Photo: © evgenyataman