Pneumonia in children: symptoms, signs, treatment

Pneumonia( pneumonia) is an infectious disease caused by various groups of bacteria and damaging lung tissue.

Inflammation of the lungs can not be unequivocally called a childhood disease, but it is children at the age of 2-3 years who face it most often. Usually pneumonia in a child occurs as a complication of respiratory diseases: sore throats, acute respiratory infections, acute respiratory infections. A major role in this is played by the protective function of the body. In young children, the immune system, as a rule, is still fragile, and therefore the likelihood of complicating even such frivolous at first glance diseases, like a common cold, increases dramatically.

Pneumonia usually affects the tissues of the smallest parts of the lungs, which are called alveoli. Alveoli play a big role in the process of human breathing. It is in them that inhaled oxygen enters, then goes to all cells of the body. The work of the alveoli ensures the exchange of oxygen and carbon dioxide in the human body. If any infectious agent gets into this section of the lungs, a very strong inflammatory process occurs, accompanied by a buildup of fluid. As a result, the alveoli can not completely cope with their basic function, the correct gas exchange in the body is partially disturbed. With insufficient intake of oxygen, the child begins oxygen starvation or hypoxia of all vital systems of the body, which most negatively affects his health and well-being. One of the first vital organs from the lack of oxygen suffers from the heart, which can lead to undesirable consequences. Therefore, the treatment of a child with acute pneumonia should begin immediately.

The child can be diagnosed with the following symptoms( symptoms):

  • A sudden increase in temperature( in some cases up to 39.5 degrees).Antipyretics in this case either do not have a positive effect, or they give a short-term result. Very rarely, pediatric pneumonia is not accompanied by an increase in body temperature.
  • Decreased appetite, total refusal to eat. Failure of the baby from food always indicates serious violations in the work of the body, and therefore requires an appeal to a specialist.
  • A drastic change in habitual behavior. The appearance of such a symptom is associated with a disruption of the central nervous system. In some cases, the child becomes sluggish, sleeps a lot and does not show active signs of life, in some cases, on the contrary, becomes hyperactive, capricious and does not fall asleep at night.

Typical for any adult human symptoms of pneumonia: wheezing and chest pain in children are almost not observed. Moreover, in the first two days from the onset of the disease, the localization of inflammation in the lungs of a child can not be seen on the X-ray image by any pulmonologist. Diagnosis of pneumonia in children of the youngest age( up to 2 years) is even more difficult. To recognize pneumonia, the mother should be very attentive to her child.

If the following symptoms appear, seek medical attention immediately:

  • Appearance of shortness of breath. With pneumonia the baby makes an excessive amount of respiratory movements precisely because the cells of his body lack oxygen. In a healthy child under one year of age, the normal number of breaths per minute equals to fifty, at the age of more than 1 year - reaches a maximum of forty.
  • Hyperthermia of the body( fever).If the cause of fever is angina, influenza or ARD, you can get rid of it with the help of antipyretic drugs, with pneumonia, most of them are powerless.
  • Skin tightening. This symptom is a true indicator of the presence of pneumonia in infants. Skin tightening means changing the relief of the skin between the baby's ribs while breathing. Blue nasolabial triangle. This sign of pneumonia can be seen in children under the age of 1 year. If there is a disease in the baby, the distance between the upper lip and nose becomes bluish.

It is known that pneumonia leads to death. It is worth to comfort the parents that in fact, pneumonia in children is very successfully treated, if only the disease was recognized in time. Modern pharmacology offers a large number of drugs for the treatment of pneumonia in the youngest children. With proper therapy, a complete cure for the disease is entirely possible.

Treatment of pneumonia in children

The main goal of treating pneumonia in children is to completely eliminate the focus of infection and all the symptoms of the disease. You can achieve the desired result only with the help of antibiotics. It is unlikely that any parent will be delighted to learn that his child is to be treated with antibiotics, but they provide the only opportunity to prevent further development of the disease. The consequences of taking antibiotics are negligible compared to the consequences of untreated pneumonia.

As an additional treatment for pneumonia, the child is prescribed antipyretic drugs and mucolytic agents to facilitate the process of sputum discharge from the bronchi. It should be remembered that all drugs are prescribed only by a specialist. It is also unacceptable to independently treat a child with the help of traditional medicine methods.

Treatment of pneumonia in a child is done at home or in the hospital. Children under one year are generally subject to inpatient treatment, since the course of the disease at this age is very unpredictable, up to the stopping of breathing. Inflammation of the lungs in an infant is a great danger to his life. Treatment in the hospital is also recommended for children with congenital chronic diseases or weakened immunity. In other cases, there is no need to hospitalize a child. It is known that children quickly recover, in the presence of a caring mother, and not in the white walls of a polyclinic. Naturally, during the treatment of the child, the mother must refuse to attend the work and devote all her time to the sick child. The outcome of the disease with timely and correct treatment is favorable in most cases.