As a mother, and I’m sure you will agree with me, one of the hardest things is when your child is sick. You can rush to the doctor and you can ask your friends for advice on what to do, but that’s just so much more confusing sometimes!
About ten days ago, Vinay started coughing. I immediately started on the cough syrup. I’m a bit paranoid about his coughs after he got a chest infection last year.
I sent him to nursery on Monday and Tuesday as usual. As a teacher, I’ve always hated when parents send their kids into school when they’re unwell – but he was in such good spirits and he *wanted* to go.
On Wednesday I took him to the doctor because the cough hadn’t become any better. The doc said it was a viral infection and to continue with the cough syrup. I kept Vinay home on Thursday and Friday.
From 3am on Monday up until 3am on Wednesday, his temperature has gone up to 104 and back to normal several times. The doctor said it was viral and that I should stay calm and dose him with paracetemol, continue with the cough syrup and give him antibiotics for three days.
I have sighed with relief when his temperature came down to 99, cried with worry when it spiked and done a little jig inside my head when it’s come down again.
His temperature has been normal for a few hours now; so fingers crossed!
But I’m very confused!
Maybe I should instinctively know these things, but I don’t. Maybe it just needs common sense…
When V was coughing, the doctor said to be careful of the air conditioning, etc. Fair enough and easily done.
But when has a fever, is he meant to be kept warm? Or cool? Should we have turned the air conditioners on or off? Should he be dressed warmly? Or just in a vest?
My mother always told me that if his temperature was over 101, I shouldn’t let him sleep until I’ve brought it down to 100 or less. I’m meant to do this by rubbing brandy on his forehead, navel and soles of his feet, using a cold compress, giving him a cold bath. But the doctor said that if he wants to sleep, I should let him sleep (and of course I should monitor his temperature). And if the child is already weak, won’t sticking him in a cold bath make him scream and make him worse?
Thank you to all the people on Twitter who advised me to give alternate doses of paracetemol and Nurofen every four hours, it really helped! But a friend has just told me that *her* doctor said to give alternate doses every two hours! Isn’t that too much?
My mum (again) said that if a child has a cough, don’t give them fried food. Is it because of the oil? But what if they won’t eat anything apart from something fried? Isn’t it better that they eat *something* rather than nothing?
I’m so confused – How do you know when to do what? Maybe I don’t have that ‘mother’s instinct’?