When to Take Your Child to the Doctor for a Cold

Cold and flu season came in with a vengeance this year, hitting nearly the entire United States at the same time and breaking records left and right.

The CDC has reported this year’s flu season as “widespread,” affecting 49 states, with 1 in 13 hospital visits being flu-related.  

Sadly, some of these record-breaking statistics include the number of patients hospitalized and the number of patients who have died.

Children and older adults are especially at risk for colds and the flu, and knowing when to seek medical attention can be life-saving.

Here are some signs that it is time to take your child to the doctor:

  • Your child has been experiencing cold symptoms for more than 10-14 days
  • The child has a fever – For babies under three months of age, a fever of 100.4 degrees or higher is cause for concern. Seek medical attention for older children that have a fever of 102 degrees or higher, and for any fever that lasts more than 72 hours.
  • He/she has a cough lasting more than 72 hours – this could be a sign of whooping cough or pneumonia
  • Your child is experiencing trouble breathing, rapid breathing, or wheezing
  • He/she has a loss of appetite – it is especially important to monitor this in babies under three months old
  • The child has blue lips
  • Your child is extremely tired, even with rest, is cranky, and is not interested in playing

The best thing you can do for children that have a cold is to let them rest and give them plenty of fluids.

Consult your doctor before administering any over-the-counter cold medicines, and closely monitor your child’s temperature.

The staff at our Instant Urgent Care centers has years of experience treating children. If your child is suffering from any of the symptoms above, feel free to come to our clinic!  For more information about our treatment for general illnesses, please call us at 408-687-4806.