Keep your child and adults away from ill children. If your child has upper or lower respiratory symptoms such as a runny nose, cough, or sneezing:
keep them away from healthy children.
According to the New York Times, pneumonia has been in the news recently because former First Lady Barbara Bush was hospitalised with the ailment.
Table of Contents
Tips for Avoiding Pneumonia
How to Prevent Pneumonia in Children and How to Care for Your Child
- Make sure your youngster is up to date on his or her vaccinations.
- Your child will be protected against bacterial pneumonia with the Hib and Pneumococcal vaccines (PVC13).
- Ensure that your youngster has a flu shot. Did you know that the influenza virus (flu) can cause pneumonia?
- When hands come into touch with your child’s nose or mouth, it’s critical to wash them frequently with warm water and soap to prevent viruses or germs from entering the body.
- Use hand sanitiser when you’re on the run.
- Allowing your child to share eating utensils, cups, or straws with others is not a good idea.
- Face tissue and handkerchiefs are the same way.
Taking Care of a Child With Pneumonia
- If you suspect your child is suffering from pneumonia, make an appointment with their paediatrician as soon as possible.
- Most cases of pneumonia may be treated at home after your kid visits a doctor, but in more serious cases, children will need to be admitted to the hospital.
How to take care of your child at home include:
- If your child’s paediatrician has prescribed antibiotics, make sure to give him or her at the appropriate time each day and for the full term recommended.
- Even if your child is feeling better after a few days, don’t stop taking the antibiotic.
- Consult your physician if you have any questions or concerns regarding the drug or its adverse effects.
- Before giving your child over-the-counter cough and cold drugs, consult with your child’s paediatrician (Many of these are NOT recommended for children under six years of age).
- Using a thermometer, check your child’s temperature.
- A fever is defined as a temperature of more than 100.4 degrees Fahrenheit.
- Do not make the mistake of assuming your child has a fever based on their body temperature.
- Maintain proper hydration for your child.
- To avoid dehydration, this is a golden rule for practically any sickness.
- Allow lots of rest for your child—naps, peaceful play, and sitting on the couch are ideal.
- A humidifier can help your youngster breathe better by moistening the air.
- Take your child to the emergency room right away if you notice they are having trouble breathing (rapid chest rise, tummy moving in and out quickly, sucking in at or beneath the ribcage with breathing, or nasal flaring).
- Lips and nail beds should be a rosy pink, not blue or grey, as this is an indication that your youngster isn’t getting enough oxygen.
- If this happens, your child should consult a doctor very away.
- Take your child back to the doctor for examination if they are not getting better or appear to be getting worse after receiving home treatment for pneumonia.
- It’s possible that they’ll need to be admitted to the hospital.
Infectious killer of children globally
- Pneumonia is often associated with the elderly, although it is the leading infectious killer of children globally.
- Every year, it kills over 800,000 children under the age of five, including more than 153,000 newborns, who are especially vulnerable to infection.
- Every 39 seconds, a kid dies of pneumonia, and almost all of these deaths are preventable.
- Every 39 seconds, a kid dies of pneumonia. Almost all of these deaths could have been avoided.
What is the cause of pneumonia?
- Pneumonia is a lung infection that occurs suddenly.
- It can be caused by bacteria, viruses, or fungi in the air, and there is no single cause.
- When a youngster is infected, his lungs swell with fluid, making breathing harder.
- Children with immature (i.e. infant) or weaker immune systems are more susceptible to pneumonia, which can be caused by malnutrition or infections like HIV.
What are some of the signs and symptoms of pneumonia?
- Coughing, difficulty breathing, and fever are the most typical signs of pneumonia, which is a lung infection.
- As a child has pneumonia, their lower chest may draw in or retract when they inhale, causing them to breathe quickly (in a healthy person, the chest expands during inhalation).
Is it true that pneumonia is contagious?
- Pneumonia is contagious and can be transmitted through the air (a cough or sneeze).
- Other fluids, such as blood after childbirth, or contaminated surfaces might also disseminate it.
In children, how is pneumonia diagnosed?
- A physical exam can be used to diagnose pneumonia, which includes examining for irregular breathing patterns and listening to the child’s lungs.
- For diagnosis, they may employ chest x-rays or blood testing.
- Health workers in countries with weak health care systems (i.e., few doctors, limited access to chest x-rays and laboratories) frequently rely on counting the number of breaths a kid takes per minute to diagnose pneumonia.
- A 5-month-old infant who takes 50 breaths per minute, for example, is breathing too quickly and may have pneumonia.
- The number of breaths required for ‘rapid breathing’ is determined by the child’s age; smaller children have higher breathing rates than older children.
What are the symptoms of pneumonia and how can you treat it?
- Pneumonia treatment varies depending on the type of pneumonia.
- A high majority of pneumonia cases in underdeveloped nations are caused by bacteria and can be treated with low-cost medications.
- However, due to a lack of access to excellent health care, only one-third of children with pneumonia receive the antibiotics they require.
- Viruses or mycobacteria (such as those that cause tuberculosis) are alternative causes of pneumonia that require different therapies.
- Tuberculosis, in particular, is frequently misdiagnosed.
- Because the inflammation in their lungs prevents adequate oxygen from entering the bloodstream, children with severe pneumonia frequently require oxygen.
- However, oxygen is only available at higher levels of health institutions and hospitals in many nations with weak health systems.
Is it possible to prevent pneumonia?
Pneumonia can be prevented in the first place by enhancing protective measures such as appropriate nutrition and minimising risk factors such as air pollution (which makes the lungs more prone to infection) and practising excellent hygiene.
Improved handwashing with soap has been proven in studies to reduce the incidence of pneumonia by up to 50% by minimising bacteria exposure.
Improved handwashing with soap reduces the incidence of pneumonia by up to 50%, according to studies.
Is there a vaccination for pneumonia?
- Bacterial pneumonia is easily avoided with vaccinations.
- In 2018, however, 71 million children did not receive the three doses of the main vaccine required to prevent pneumonia (PCV).
- A new vaccination is being developed for one of the most common viral causes of pneumonia.
Where do the majority of youngsters die as a result of pneumonia?
- The Democratic Republic of Congo, Ethiopia, India, Nigeria, and Pakistan are among the countries with the highest number of infant pneumonia mortality in Sub-Saharan Africa and Asia.
- These five countries account for more than half of all pneumonia-related deaths among children under the age of five.
- Pneumonia is the leading cause of death among children in the world’s poorest countries.
- Children from the poorest and most marginalised families suffer the most in these countries.
- They frequently have limited or no access to basic health care, and they are more vulnerable to other health problems such as hunger, infectious infections, and contaminated air.
- They frequently live in precarious or humanitarian situations, where risk factors rise and health services fail.
- Air pollution is linked to about half of all childhood pneumonia deaths.
What role does air pollution play in pneumonia?
- Air pollution raises the risk of respiratory infections, such as pneumonia, substantially.
- Air pollution is responsible for around half of all paediatric pneumonia deaths.
- Children are at risk from outdoor air pollution, especially in high-burden pneumonia nations where urbanisation is increasing.
- However, indoor air pollution, which is caused by the use of dirty fuels for cooking and heating, is a greater global issue.
- Indoor pollution is responsible for 62% of child pneumonia deaths caused by air pollution.
What is required to prevent pneumonia?
- Pneumonia can be avoided if newborns and young children are nursed early, vaccinated, have access to clean water, a healthy diet, and are exposed to low levels of pollution.
- In order to treat pneumonia, health workers must be within easy reach of families and possess the necessary training, medications, and diagnostic instruments.
- Strong primary health care, as well as engaged and empowered communities, are required for both prevention and treatment.
- However, just 68 per cent of children with pneumonia symptoms in the United States are taken to a doctor.
- Every 39 seconds, a kid dies of pneumonia.
- To put an end to these avoidable fatalities, immediate action is required.
- Health personnel who are trained and equipped to support both pneumonia prevention and treatment can help to change the disease’s course and keep every child alive.
What foods you should eat for pneumonia?
In order to control the symptoms of the virus, including the following foods in your diet. These meals aid in the healthy maintenance of the lungs and help to avoid the onset of a respiratory illness. They also boost your immunity and aid in the battle against infection. They must be taken in addition to the medications prescribed by your doctor.
Drink plenty of water
If you have pneumonia, it is imperative that you drink plenty of fluids. Water, as well as other fluids such as juices, aid in the release of mucus from the lungs. They aid to flush out toxic poisons as well as foreign particles that cause obstructions in the respiratory tract.
Eat whole-grain food
During this time, the carbohydrate content of whole grains such as quinoa, brown rice, oats, and barley supplies energy to the body. They contain B-vitamins, which aid in the creation of energy and the regulation of body temperature. The mineral selenium included in these grains helps to boost the immune system.
Should take high protein diet
For those suffering from pneumonia, a high-protein diet is useful. Anti-inflammatory foods include almonds, seeds, beans, white meat, and cold-water seafood like salmon and sardines. They also aid in the healing of damaged tissues and the formation of new ones in the body.
Should consume leafy vegetables
Leafy greens such as kale, lettuce, and spinach are high in nutrients that aid in the recovery of this respiratory infection. They are high in antioxidants, which help to protect the body from infectious pathogens.
Should have citrus fruits
Citrus fruits high in vitamin C, such as oranges, berries, and kiwifruit, aid to enhance the immune system and encourage a quick recovery. They also include antioxidants, which help the body defend itself against external invaders.
Probiotics included in foods like yoghurt prevent the growth of pneumonia-causing bacteria. They also help to strengthen the immune system by increasing the number of beneficial bacteria in the stomach.
Honey has long been renowned for its medicinal benefits. It helps to treat the symptoms of pneumonia, such as cough and cold. Antibacterial and antimicrobial characteristics are present.
Ginger’s anti-inflammatory and antibacterial qualities can aid in the battle against pneumonia-causing germs. It aids in the alleviation of chest pain, which is an indication of infection. It can be taken in the form of ginger tea to alleviate discomfort.
This tea may aid in the treatment of a persistent cough associated with pneumonia. Furthermore, studies show that fenugreek seeds can aid in sweating, which lowers a person’s body temperature during a fever.
Turmeric is a mucolytic, meaning it aids in the removal of mucus and catarrh from the bronchial ducts, allowing for easier breathing. It also has anti-inflammatory effects that help to alleviate chest pain. It can be drunk either with milk or as tea.
Vaccines for Pneumococcal Disease (PCV and PPSV)
What Are They?
Pneumococcal infections are caused by bacteria, and the pneumococcal conjugate vaccination (PCV13) and pneumococcal polysaccharide vaccine (PPSV23) protect against them.
The bacteria can cause serious infections like pneumonia, blood infections, and bacterial meningitis when spread from person to person.
PCV13 is a pneumococcal vaccine that protects against 13 different strains of pneumococcal bacteria (which cause the most common pneumococcal infections in kids). PPSV23 defends against 23 different types of viruses. These vaccines not only protect children who have been inoculated from diseases, but they also help prevent infections from spreading to others.
Immunization Schedules for PCV and PPSV
PCV13 vaccinations are given to all infants in a four-part series:
The first is at two months of age, followed by four months, six months, and twelve to fifteen months.
Some children above the age of two may require a PCV13 shot, for example, if they have missed one or more vaccinations or if they have a chronic health condition (such as heart or lung disease) or an immune-system-weakening condition (such as asplenia, HIV infection, etc.). A doctor can determine when and how often PCV13 should be given to a child.
What Are the Benefits of the PCV and PPSV Vaccines?
Pneumococcal infections are particularly dangerous in children under the age of two, recent adults over sixty-five, and those with certain medical disorders. These vaccines have a high success rate in averting serious illness, hospitalisation, and even death.
PCV and PPSV Vaccines’ Potential Risks
There may be redness, pain, or swelling where the shot was given to the child. When getting the shot, a youngster may also experience a fever.
I hope you find this material useful. Remember that pneumonia prevention is crucial, and this includes keeping your entire family healthy. Remind your child to wash their hands frequently and practise excellent hygiene, to stay away from sick people, to eat healthy and nutritious foods, and to get vaccinated. If you are concerned that your kid may have pneumonia, make sure they are assessed by a paediatrician as soon as possible.