Improper child care is one of the causes of recurrent pneumonia in children many times a year.
According to Associate Professor, Doctor, Doctor Nguyen Thi Yen, Department of Pediatrics, Tam Anh General Hospital, Hanoi, recurrent pneumonia, also known as recurrent pneumonia (Recurrent pneumonia), is a term that refers to a child’s condition with 2 episodes of pneumonia. pneumonia or more in a year or 3 or more episodes of pneumonia at any time. Between episodes of pneumonia in children without clinical symptoms, pneumonia lesions on chest X-ray.
The majority of pneumonia patients require short-term treatment. However, it is not uncommon for children with pneumonia to have a long-lasting or recurrent course even in industrialized countries. Among them, many children are seriously ill and need to be treated in the intensive care unit. “In fact, about 7-9% of children with pneumonia can develop recurrent pneumonia,” said Associate Professor Yen.
According to Associate Professor Yen, there are a number of reasons that make pneumonia easy to relapse in children.
The sudden change in weather when entering the season, the water or the air is too polluted, the environment is unhygienic, and you often have to breathe in smoke from people around.
For premature babies, malnourished children, rickets, vitamin A deficiency, zinc deficiency, children who are not vaccinated on time and fully, children with poor resistance, children with underlying diseases such as congenital diseases of sugar respiratory, cardiovascular, gastroesophageal reflux… very easy to relapse pneumonia.
Doctor Yen also said that children exposed to water for too long or sweating a lot without changing clothes will lead water to seep back into the body and into the lungs. Children exposed to cold air early in the morning or late at night, so getting a cold can easily lead to pneumonia.
One of the mistakes parents make in taking care of children, making them more susceptible to pneumonia is the overuse of antibiotics (inappropriate use) when treating the disease, which makes pneumonia easy to recur. Parents’ habit of buying drugs on their own, arbitrarily stopping drugs without indications should not treat the disease completely, pneumonia will recur more times, antibiotic resistance is more serious.
“The non-compliance with the treatment of the first pneumonia episodes, and the lack of active examination and treatment of the children with pneumonia are also the causes of recurrent pneumonia” – Dr. Yen added.
Symptoms and prevention
According to Dr. Yen, pneumonia is a disease that causes damage or infection in lung tissue caused by bacteria, viruses, parasites, fungi, etc. The most common initial symptoms when a child has pneumonia is an inflammation of the upper respiratory tract such as coughing, sneezing, clear runny nose, moderate or high fever. Some children present with gastrointestinal symptoms such as vomiting, regurgitation, diarrhea, loose stools, poor appetite… After 1-3 days, children have higher fevers, children cough more and more, at first dry cough after coughing sputum, the child breathes faster than usual
Tachypnea is the main sign of pneumonia (counting breaths per minute and judging by age). Infants with tachypnea at 60 breaths per minute or more in infants younger than 2 months; 50 beats per minute or more in children aged 2 to 12 months; 40 beats per minute or more in children aged 1-5 years; 30 beats per minute or more in children over 5 years old.
In addition, the child may have signs of shortness of breath, labored breathing such as nodding head with breathing rhythm, nostrils rising and falling, indentation above and below the sternum, contraction of the intercostal muscles, and chest indrawing. The child may appear abnormal breathing sounds such as moaning, wheezing.
In severe cases, they turn pale, even stop breathing. Babies have difficulty breathing, so they often cry, stop feeding and gradually get tired, pale and purple skin. With severe cases and rapid progression, it will lead to severe respiratory failure, even respiratory arrest if not treated promptly.
“For children, if the fever is difficult to bring down, the baby sleeps or cries a lot, sucks poorly or stops feeding, eats and drinks poorly, vomits a lot, convulses… rapid breathing, difficulty breathing, chest indrawing, Cyanosis needs to be quickly taken to a medical facility for timely treatment, “doctor Yen noted.
To prevent pneumonia in children, Dr. Nguyen Thi Yen recommends that parents should clean their baby’s nose and mouth, especially when the baby shows signs of nasal discharge. If the baby has a lot of nasal discharge, the mother can wash the nose, suck the nose, clean the nose with physiological saline to help the baby’s airways clear, the nose and throat will not be blocked by mucus.
For babies under 3 months old, mothers should use warm physiological saline and gently put it into the nose. For babies over 3 months old, mothers can use saline spray and spray directly into the baby’s nose. As a result, the baby can breathe easier and sleep easier. Keep the house always airy, free of dust, cigarette smoke, and moisture.
Parents should not arbitrarily buy antibiotics or cough suppressants for their children to take, the best solution is for parents to take their children to the nearest health department for timely diagnosis and treatment. when the child shows signs of coughing or difficulty breathing.
Mothers need to ensure the right nutrition, so they should supplement their babies with nutritious foods, paying attention to soft, easy-to-digest, and easy-to-swallow foods. In particular, parents must create a variety of meals to ensure adequate nutrients. Parents should divide meals, let children eat many meals a day to limit vomiting and regurgitation caused by eating too much. For children with underlying diseases, children need to be monitored and treated for the underlying disease early and thoroughly.