Preventing Skin Rashes In Children

Rashes are very common in children. But just because they are prevalent it doesn’t mean they should be taken lightly. Rashes, which are reaction of the skin, can be triggered by anything from allergies, infection and drugs.

Most rashes that are caused by viruses go away without any treatment and without harming your child. However, other types can have serious repercussions or even be fatal. As a parent, you should be aware what these serious rashes are. If you have any reason for concern, don’t hesitate to pay your doctor a visit.

• What Causes It?
Also called Varicella, this contagious disease is caused by a virus called Varicella-zoster.

• Signs and Symptoms
Symptoms would last for about two weeks. These would include fever, sore throat, and exhaustion. The classic sign would be itchy rashes that appear on the head and torso before spreading to the arms and legs.

• Who Are At Risk?
Chickenpox usually doesn’t harm children but it can be serious for those who have weak immune systems such as newborns or kids who have other illness. The good news is that you can now prevent chickenpox by having your child get a vaccine.

• The Vaccine
The chickenpox vaccine, also called varicella vaccine, was included in the United States routine childhood immunizations in 1995. This vaccine is given in two doses with the first one given at 12 to 15 months. The second dosage is given between 4 and 6 years old. This vaccine is safe and effective. In 2005, a combination vaccine that protects against mumps, measles, rubella, and chickenpox was introduced.

• What Causes It?
Measles are caused by a virus called Paramyxovirus.

• Signs and Symptoms
Symptoms of measles don’t appear right away. They appear 10 to 12 days after exposure from the virus, which is also very contagious.

First Signs:
– nasal congestion
– cough
– eye redness
– moderate fever of 102 F-103 F

Other Signs:
– the child looks pale and sick
– reduced appetite
– reduced physical activity
– brown rashes on the face, hairline and ears appearing on the third or fourth day of the illness
– rashes spreading to the thighs and feet after a few days

• The Vaccine
Like chickenpox, it can also be prevented with a safe and effective vaccine. Recommended vaccine for measles is given at 12 to 15 months, and repeated at 4 to 6 years old.

• What Causes It?
Also known as German Measles, rubella is the milder version of the above mentioned measles. This one is caused by a virus called Rubella Virus, the only member of the genus of Rubivirus.

• Symptoms
Spread by the virus in nasal and oral secretions, rubella has symptoms like:
– pink and light red rashes on the face and body
– low-grade temperature
– headache
– mild joint pains
– conjunctivitis without discharge
– swollen lymph nodes particularly in the neck and behind the ears

• The Vaccine
There is no cure for rubella. Fortunately, it can also be prevented with a vaccine. It is included in the MMR (mumps, measles and rubella) vaccine that is administered at 12 to 15 months and repeated at 4 to 6 years of age.

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