Unusual Childhood Illnesses

Unusual Childhood Illnesses

Sniffles and sore throats don’t worry moms much, but sometimes kids come
home with scary symptoms that can catch moms off guard. Dr. Sarah
Petersen has a list unusual childhood illnesses that moms need to know

All kids get the sniffles and the occasional sore throat, but some childhood
illnesses are slightly more concerning to parents. Here’s what parents need
to know:


· Impetigo is a bacterial skin infection, most common in children ages 2-6
years old.

· It appears as clusters of itchy bumps or sores that can seep fluid.
Touching the fluid can cause the infection to spread.

· Impetigo can look severe, but usually clears up with a prescription

Conjunctivitis (Pink Eye)

· Pink eye can be alarming, as it may make the eyes extremely red, but it’s
a fairly common condition. Patients should be seen by a doctor to rule out
other serious eye problems.

· Symptoms include the feeling that there is something in the eye, redness
of the eye, or discharge from the eye which may cause the eyelids to stick

· Pinkeye is very contagious, and is caused by bacteria, viruses and

· Treatment typically involves antibiotic eye drops.

Head Lice

· Lice are tiny insects that live on humans and feed on blood.

· Head lice are found most often in the back on the neck and behind the

· Lice are common in elementary age school children and spread easily
with shared brushes combs, pillows, headphones, etc.

· The most common symptom is itching and scratching of the head.
Schools may or may not notify parents when there has been an outbreak of
lice because of privacy concerns.

· Treatment includes over the counter creams, lotions, and shampoos, and
combs that “pick out” the lice and lice eggs.


· Warts are growths of the skin caused by a virus. Dome-shaped warts can
appear on the fingers, toes, and knees. Flat warts can show up on the face,
legs, and other parts of the body, often in large numbers.

· Treatments can include drops, gels, and pads, or freezing. You can also
leave them alone, or treat them with duct tape and immune system boosters.

Hand, Foot, and Mouth Disease

· Hand, foot, and mouth disease is a common childhood illness,
characterized by blisters or sores inside the mouth and on the palms and
soles of the feet.

· It’s caused by the coxackievirus and is easily spread.

· It usually goes away on its own, and isn’t serious, but may cause

Fifth’s Disease

· Also called slapped check, the illness causes a red rash on the face that
resembles a slap.

· Fifth’s disease is caused by Parvovirus B19. It’s usually not serious and
goes away on its own, though it can be serious for pregnant women.
Pregnant women should let their health care prober know if they have been

For more information, call the South Jordan Health Center at 801-213-4500.

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