What are the Common Diseases during Babyhood?

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Cholera

It is a highly infectious disease. In this dis­ease, the digestive system of the person is affected. Generally it spreads during summer. If not treated properly its mortality rate can go upto 70%. People who ignore hygienic prac­tices are more prone to this disease. It can affect the people of any age.

Causes

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It is spread by the bacteria called Cholera Vibrio. They enter the body of the victim through contaminated water or food flies pick up these bacteria from the spit, vomit and stools of infected persons and leave them on uncovered food and water. A person gets infected of this disease on consumption of such food.

The bacteria survive in dark places or dry saliva for many months. The moment they get favourable conditions they start multiplying. They grow in summer so the spread of this disease can occur during March to April.

Sources of spread

(i) Water

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Drinking water from polluted rivers and at public places where the bacteria of cholera are present

(ii) Milk

If the child drinks polluted milk or milk from such animals eating polluted food or milkman adds water to milk and if that water is polluted the milk also gets pol­luted.

(iii) Food

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When polluted food is taken by a person or if the person is taking food along with a patient, then the saliva of a patient causes infection.

(iv) Flies

Flies sit on dirty places and pick up those bacteria. They leave them on food or anything, they come in contact with. These bacteria remain alive for 10-15 days. If any person comes in contact will also catch cholera

(v) Human

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A person when comes in con­tact with infected person also gets this infec­tion.

Incubation period

Incubation period for this disease is from 1-2 hrs to 5 days.

Symptoms:

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(i) Loose motions.

(ii) Vomiting and pain in legs.

(iii) Excessive thirst, dry tongue.

(iv) Less urine formation.

(u) Possibility of dehydration.

(vi) Listlessness

(vii) Patient suffers from low blood pressure.

(viii) If not treated early the patient may die.

Prevention and cure:

(i) Inform health officer immediately.

(ii) Patient should be kept in a separate room.

(iii) Excretion like spit and vomit should be kept in a bowl having 30% bleaching powder.

(iv) The nurse or the person who attends the patient should clean his hands with soap.

(v) Room should be mopped with Phenyl.

(vi) Toilet should be cleaned with Phenyl.

(vii) Boiled water should be given to the patient.

(viii) Food should always be covered.

(ix) Eating outside should be avoided dur­ing the epidemic.

(x) Hygienic practices should be followed during the fairs and festival.

(xi) Cholera vaccine should be given.

Care:

(i) Patient should be given full rest.

(ii) Patient should be kept warm.

(iii) Patient should be given boiled and cooled ORS after every 1 or 2 hrs. in order to supplement the deficiency of electrolytes.

(iv) Doctor should be consulted as soon as possible.

Diarrhea

It is an infectious disease. It is caused by bacteria inflaming the intestine of a person. The stools are frothy, smelly and loose. They also contain mucus. Generally the colour of stools is greenish and the patient passes them frequently. If it is not controlled it can take serious turn. Water is also excreted with waste and along with it soluble minerals like sodium and potassium are also excreted.

Causes:

(i) Contami­nated water and food.

By taking pol­luted water and food bacteria of diarrhea contaminated water enter the body of and food person and cause diarrhea.

(ii) Malnutrition.

Causes weakness among children and they become susceptible to diseases. Their digestive system becomes weak. Whatever they eat they cannot digest and causes diarrhea. They do not get nutri­ents and as a result become malnourished.

(iii) Unhygienic conditions.

Unhygienic conditions causes diarrhea as microorgan­ism grow in such places. Children take their toys to their mouth and these organisms en­ter in their mouth and their body. Flies also sit at such places and pick up organisms and make others sick by leaving them on milk bottles, nipples, open food and toys etc. It causes diarrhea in children.

(iv)Allergy

Diarrhea is caused due to allergy also.

(v) Worms in stomach.

Some types of worms also cause diarrhea. If these worms are in the stomach or intestines they cause diarrhea.

(vi) Bacteria and virus in intestines.

Due to any reason if poisonous bacteria enter the intestine they cause diarrhea and stom­ach pain.

Spread.

As it is an infectious disease, it spreads by taking used food and water of in­fected person. It also spreads by taking food or water which is uncovered and is subjected to flies. Unsterilized nipple and toys also cause diarrhea.

Diarrhea is of two types:

(i) Acute diarrhea. It is for a very short duration but is very intense.

(ii) Chronic diarrhea. It is for long duration but not so intense.

Symptoms:

(i) Frequent passing of stools.

(ii) Watery stools.

(iii) Foul smell and mucus in stools.

(iv) Weakness.

(v) Listlessness.

(vi) Deficiency of water in the body.

(vii) Vomiting.

(viii) Dehydration.

(ix) Tongue and throat dries up.

(x) Sunken eyes.

(xi) Skin becomes loose. ,

(xii) The patient can faint.

(xiii)If not treated in time the patient can die.

Prevention:

(i) One should follow the principles of hy­giene.

(ii) Always clean one’s environment.

(iii) Utensils used for the baby should be cleaned.

(iv) Food and water should be kept covered.

(v) Toys of the baby should be cleaned regularly.

(vi) If possible in summer the baby should be given mother’s milk, as Lacto-Bacil- lus present in mother’s milk restricts diarrhea.

Care:

(i) Children should be given full rest.

Milk and water should be boiled pro­perly.

In order to prevent dehydration, ORS solution should be given.

Doctor should be consulted.

Dal water, orange juice, barley water should be given to the baby.

ORS Solution

1 litre boiled water 3 gm salt 25 gm sugar l/4th lemon juice

Diphtheria

This occurs in children normally below 6 years. It spreads very fast and needs immedi­ate attention, otherwise proves dangerous. It occurs mostly in winters. Its microorganisms enter the throat and produce toxins.

Cause

It is caused by corynebacterium diphtheria. It affects the throat and respira­tory canal and produces toxins there. If these toxins reach to the heart the patient dies.

Spread:

(i) Bacteria of this disease are spread in air by the infected person’s mouth, nose, cough, spit, etc. which are taken in by other persons with the breath. (ii) By using clothes, utensils, thermometer and leftover food of the patient.

Symptoms:

(£) Respiratory pipe is infected. (ii) Swelling in throat. (iii) Tonsil swells and difficulty in swallowing.

The lymph glands also swell. The patient suffers from high fever. Throat, tonsils and upper portion of mouth becomes white. Cramps occur in body. Respiratory canal is blocked by a membrane which causes difficulty in breathing.

Toxins produced by bacteria reach nerves and heart of the patient. Incubation period. The incubation pe­riod of this disease is 2 to 5 days. It should be treated immediately, otherwise delay can cause the membrane to form and block breathing, which results to the death of patient.

Prevention:

(i) DPT vaccine should be given in time.

(ii) Children should be kept away from such patients.

(iii) Attendant should gargle regularly with water

Care:

(i) The patient should be kept in an airy room.

(ii) Secretion from nose and throat should be burnt.

(iii) Patient should be kept away from other children.

(iv) Patient should be made to gargle with salted water or the solution of potassium permanganate.

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