There has been an increase in the number of young children with coughs and respiratory illness attending GP practices and A&E departments in Lincolnshire.
Bronchiolitis is a common viral chest infection that affects babies and young children during the winter months. Most cases are mild and clear up in two to three weeks without the need for treatment.
It usually starts just like the common cold with a runny nose and a cough. Other symptoms are a fever, rapid and noisy (wheezy) breathing and poor feeding may develop a few days later. Most children can be cared for at home in the same way that you would treat a cold.
To reduce your child's risk of catching it and help prevent the virus spreading, you should:
- wash your hands and your child's hands frequently
- wash or wipe toys and surfaces regularly
- keep infected children at home until their symptoms have improved
- keep newborn babies away from people with colds or flu
- prevent your child being exposed to tobacco smoke
To ease symptoms:
- Make sure your child gets enough fluids to avoid dehydration.
- You can give infants paracetamol and ibuprofen to bring down their temperature if the fever is upsetting them.
Contact your GP or NHS111 if your child
- is under 12 weeks old
- has a congenital (present form birth) heart or lung condition
- is struggling to breathe
- is feeding/eating poorly
- has not had a wet nappy for 12 hours or more
- has a high temperature (38°C/100.4°F or above)
- they seem very tired or irritable
For more information visit: https://www.nhs.uk/conditions/bronchiolitis/
Call your GP or NHS111 if you are concerned or need advice.