What causes baby infections?
Most infections in newborn babies are caused by bacteria, and some by viruses. A mother’s birth canal contains bacteria, especially if they have an active infection. During childbirth, the baby can swallow or breathe in the fluid in the birth canal, and bacteria or viruses can get into their lungs and blood.
How can we prevent infections in children?
Clean your hands well, before you enter and after you leave your child’s room; all visitors should do the same. Use either soap and water or an alcohol-based hand cleaner. Daily bathing and linen changes are very important to lower your child’s risk of exposure to germs that cause infection.
How can you tell if your baby has an infection?
Call your child’s doctor or seek emergency medical care if your new baby shows any of these possible signs of infection:
- poor feeding.
- breathing difficulty.
- decreased or elevated temperature.
- unusual skin rash or change in skin color.
- persistent crying.
- unusual irritability.
How are viral illnesses spread? A virus can spread from person to person in tiny droplets from the nose (sneezing or a runny nose) and mouth (saliva or a cough). Viruses can also spread via vomit or faeces (poo), especially when someone has diarrhoea.
Why are infants more vulnerable to infection?
Premature babies are typically more vulnerable to infections because their immune systems are immature. The lack of antibodies and immunity in a premature baby’s immune system means they can’t fight off bacteria, viruses or fungi in the same way that full-term babies may be able to.
What are 3 ways to reduce possible spread of infection?
Prevent the spread of infectious disease
- Immunise against infectious diseases.
- Wash and dry your hands regularly and well.
- Stay at home if you are sick.
- Cover coughs and sneezes.
- Clean surfaces regularly.
- Ventilate your home.
- Prepare food safely.
- Practise safe sex.
What are the most common infections in child care settings?
The most common causes of childcare-associated outbreaks include Giardia, Cryptosporidium, rotavirus, and other enteric viruses. Outbreaks of Shigella and Escherichia coli O147:H7 infection also occur with some frequency and are a cause for concern.
When should I be worried about my baby?
If your baby is 6 to 24 months old and has a temperature higher than 102 F (38.9 C) that lasts longer than one day but shows no other signs or symptoms, contact the doctor. If your baby also has other signs or symptoms — such as a cold, cough or diarrhea — you might contact the doctor sooner based on their severity.
When do babies need antibiotics?
Antibiotics for children
Children do not often need antibiotics. Most childhood infections are caused by viruses. Antibiotics only treat illnesses caused by bacteria, not viruses. If your child is prescribed antibiotics for a bacterial infection, they may seem better after 2 or 3 days.
Are infections in newborns common?
Bacterial infection is a common cause of illness in newborn babies and is treated with antibiotics. Group B streptococcus (GBS) is a common type of bacteria which is the most frequent cause of serious infection in newborn babies.