How To Know If Your Baby’s In Pain And How To Relieve Her Discomfort
Nobody likes the sensation of being in pain. So it's dreadful for any parent to have to witness their little baby suffering through discomfort. Since babies can’t describe their symptoms to you, you have to try to figure out how to help them.
There are many reasons for the pain in babies. The most common causes for babies include colic, teething, ear infections, aches and pains caused by colds and flu or immunisation shots.
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Symptoms of a baby in pain
Crying – A baby who is ill and feeling pain, often cries in a more urgent and high-pitched tone.
Facial expressions – your baby might squeeze their eyes shut, grimace, open their mouth or wrinkle their brow.
Bodily movements – Depending on what’s causing the pain, your baby might be squirmy and they might move their arms and legs around. The could be tense or stiff, with arms and legs either stretched out or pulled in.
Irritable mood – Your baby might be cranky and/or restless, and not be interested in eating or sleeping.
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"A thermometer is an absolute essential for parents, Calpol is a staple for family first aid kits. I would also make sure I have nasal saline drops for blocked
noses, nappy cream/Vaseline for sore bums and plasters for when baby starts crawling etc." – Jenny Coleman
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How you can help your baby
Breastfeeding and skin-to-skin contact – Research has shown that breastfeeding can help to reduce a baby’s pain. Breastfeeding involves holding, skin-to-skin contact, sucking and the sweet taste of breast milk – all of which are effective ways of reducing pain.
Distraction – Toys, singing, talking, movement, dancing around the room with baby – the simplest of distractions can help to soothe baby’s pain.
Pain relief – You can give paracetamol to children aged two months or older for pain or fever. Ibuprofen can be given to children who are aged three months or older and who weigh more than 5kg (11lbs). Make sure that you use the right product, strength and dose for the child’s age and weight. Recommended doses, according to the child’s age and weight, are given on the product packaging. Use the measure provided – or if there isn’t one, a metric medicine measure to pour the dose.
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When should I take my child to the doctor?
While almost all fevers and pain in childhood are due to non-threatening illnesses that pass in a day or two, you should take your sick child to the doctor if:
- You are worried.
- He is under 12 months old and has a fever.
- He has a fever that continues for more than 48 hours.
- He has a very high temperature – over 40º C/104ºF.
- He convulses.
- He is getting sicker.
- He is very sleepy or particularly irritable.
- He has a rash.
- He shows unusual symptoms including a stiff neck, vomiting, stomach pains, or skin discolouration.
- He is experiencing ongoing pain, for example, stomach ache, headache or earache.
- He has an injury and is experiencing pain.
- He is having trouble breathing due to a cough or wheezing.
- He is vomiting or isn’t able to drink.
- He is not feeding properly.
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How do you soothe your baby's pain? Tell us in the comments below.