Childhood Strep Throat Overview

By , February 6, 2012 12:17 pm

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Children and teenagers are commonly confronted with strep throat. Due to its very contagious character, strep throat can be easily acquired by children during the flu seasons. Strep throat is a type a sore throat caused by infection with group A streptococcus bacteria. Unlike sore throat, the bacterial form of the illness usually generates more intense symptoms which can persist for more than a week. Strep throat can cause symptoms such as throat inflammation and pain, enlargement of the tonsils and lymph nodes, difficult swallowing, difficult breathing, mucus-producing cough, headache, fatigue, poor appetite, nausea and fever. When it occurs in children, strep throat can also be accompanied by skin rash.

strep throat, strep throat symptoms, treatment for strep throat

Children and teenagers are commonly confronted with strep throat. Due to its very contagious character, strep throat can be easily acquired by children during the flu seasons. Strep throat is a type a sore throat caused by infection with group A streptococcus bacteria. Unlike sore throat, the bacterial form of the illness usually generates more intense symptoms which can persist for more than a week. Strep throat can cause symptoms such as throat inflammation and pain, enlargement of the tonsils and lymph nodes, difficult swallowing, difficult breathing, mucus-producing cough, headache, fatigue, poor appetite, nausea and fever. When it occurs in children, strep throat can also be accompanied by skin rash.

The reason why strep throat is very common among children and teenagers is that they interact with large groups of persons in kindergarten or school, rendering them very vulnerable to contracting streptococcus bacteria or other infectious agents. In order to avoid the occurrence of strep throat, it is very important to timely educate your child in maintaining a good level of personal hygiene. Proper personal hygiene is a very effective means of preventing strep throat and many other types of contagious diseases. Especially in the flu seasons, teach your child to wash his hands regularly and to avoid sharing personal items with other people. Once acquired, strep throat can be very difficult to overcome and hence it is best to take proper measures in preventing the occurrence of the illness in the first place.

When your child has a persistent sore throat accompanied by fever, inflamed tonsils and lymph nodes, it is a sign of infection with bacteria and you should pay a visit to a pediatrician as soon as possible. Before seeking medical guidance, avoid giving your child left-over medications, as you can generate more harm rather than good. Administered to very young children, even aspirin can have pronounced side-effects.

It is very important to note that strep throat doesn’t clear on itself. Unlike most sore throats, strep throat may require a course of antibiotics. Although antibiotics have various side-effects and they also attack the body’s benign bacterial flora, in present they are the best means of curing strep throat. Prescribed in the incipient stages of infection, antibiotics such as penicillin and amoxicillin can effectively overcome strep throat, also minimizing the risk of developing complications. If the infection is serious, the doctor may prescribe a course of cephalosporins, a strong type of antibiotics.

In order to ensure a complete recovery and to avoid a recurrence of the infection, the medical treatment with antibiotics needs to be administered for at least 10 days. It is very important to follow the doctor’s exact instructions when giving antibiotics to your child. Make sure that you respect the dosage specified by the doctor and avoid interrupting the treatment prematurely. Even if the child appears to be completely recovered from illness within the first days of treatment, it is important to complete the course of antibiotics in order to minimize the chances of relapse.

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