to not have realised that so much of childhood would be taken up by illness?

(108 Posts)
toomuchillness Tue 18-Mar-14 10:35:21

Before I had DC, I knew that obviously DC would be ill at times but I genuinely didn't realise how much of their time they would spend in illness. I have one at school and one at nursery. Their noses seem to run for 6-7 months at a time virtually constantly from September to when the weather starts to get warmer. Colds, chest infections, conjunctivitis, diarrhoea, vomiting, molluscum contagiousm, chicken pox, coughs which last for a month a time - it just doesn't seem to end sad

Everyone says it will get better when they get older. The annoying thing is I end up catching quite a few of the illnesses too

MatryoshkaDoll Tue 18-Mar-14 10:38:20

It's nursery. They're germ factories.

However it does sound like you've been especially unlucky. I don't remember DSD being ill quite so often when she was at nursery.

ChoudeBruxelles Tue 18-Mar-14 10:40:38

Ds is nearly eight and isn't ill all of the time anymore.

OpalQuartz Tue 18-Mar-14 10:43:29

My dd2 used to have constant colds. It was before she was at nursery and I now think it was because I took her to a soft play area every week and i think she was catching them from that. I believe my eldest caught swine flu from a soft play area actually. She caught it over a half term and it was the only indoor place we had been to (other than home.)

deakymom Tue 18-Mar-14 10:53:00

mine is constant too then people say why don't you get a job? umm because the child is off school AGAIN childminders etc won't take him (which is good im not knocking them) and everyone else i know work yes i could have that unpaid parental leave thing BUT if my youngest is ill as often as my middle son was when he went to nursery there really isnt a point in me working he didnt make a full week in fact i switched his days so he only went four days a week just to make him look better he always got ill on a thursday night so i put him a full day and gave him friday off

DaveMccave Tue 18-Mar-14 10:55:47

How is their diet? Take immune boosters and have a sugar detox. Only eat organic where possible. Do they have much sugar? Every time refined sugar is consumed, nutrient stores are used to digest it. Too much refined sugar Is usually the biggest cause of poor immune system. My 7 year old has only ever had chicken pox. (and with that, no temp, itching or illness). I don't think repeated infections is normal. Make sure they take probiotics too.

Martorana Tue 18-Mar-14 10:58:26

Can I gently suggest that some and I repeat, some, of it depends on how you define illness? I would say that my children were never ill- but they certainly had colds, coughs, runny noses and molluscum from your list. I just don't, unless the child really feels ill, regard these things as illnesses. You take sensible precautions to avoid infecting others and then just carry on regardless.

SummerRain Tue 18-Mar-14 11:00:54

I agree, that seems a lot. I have three kids, two with asthma and we've had a few medical issues over the years but we don't have constant snotty noses and coughs, I'd be seriously concerned about their immune systems if they did.

How's their diet? Do they get enough fresh air? Do you have central heating blasting constantly?

It's really not normal to be ill so much and you need to figure out what's going on as it can't be much fun for the kids either.

SaveTheMockingBird Tue 18-Mar-14 11:03:54

I don't know the link between refined sugar and immune system, but we do avoid refined carbs and sugar as much as possible, whilst still allowing a small treat now and then, and we eat very little processed foods and my DCs are hardly ever ill. Maybe one day off nursery/school a year. Although when they were tinier (they are now 5 and 3) they did get ill more when they were both at nursery.
I don't give them vitamins or probiotics either.

toomuchillness Tue 18-Mar-14 11:06:06

Diet is good, lots of fruit and vegetables. Very little sugar

Regular walks and physical activities

Central heating about average. Even when cold, we still go for regular walks

SaveTheMockingBird Tue 18-Mar-14 11:06:22

My 3yr old does have a runny nose occassionally, but that's not an illness surely!?

SaveTheMockingBird Tue 18-Mar-14 11:08:05

I think some people are just prone to illness more than others, i.e genetic even if you eat healthily and excercise plenty.
Me and DH are hardly ever ill either.

toomuchillness Tue 18-Mar-14 11:14:13

runny nose is not an illness but with coughing and a fever, it becomes an illness

Martorana Tue 18-Mar-14 11:20:18

"runny nose is not an illness but with coughing and a fever, it becomes an illness"

Only if the child feels ill, surely? I think a child has to tell you that they are ill, rather than the other way round.

toomuchillness Tue 18-Mar-14 11:21:42

Only if the child feels ill, surely? I think a child has to tell you that they are ill, rather than the other way round

Even if they have a fever? confused

Martorana Tue 18-Mar-14 11:23:54

Yes- why ever not? If a fever is high then a child will feel ill. If the child doesn't feel ill, then carry on, is my philosophy!

MrsDavidBowie Tue 18-Mar-14 11:24:53

I must have been lucky as mine were ridiculously healthy and still are.
Never had d and v, average 2 days off a year due to sore throat/earache.

I put it down to garlic/onions in everything grin

Jinty64 Tue 18-Mar-14 11:45:25

In almost 19 years of parenthood I have had 4 days off work with children being Unwell so i dont think it is a reason not to have a job. 1 day when ds1 (then 4 months) had a high temperature and 3 days off when ds3 had chicken pox. Ds1 kindly had chicken pox whilst I was on maternity leave with ds2 and ds2 hasn't had it (that we are aware of). They have had one sickness bug 5 years ago at Easter when I was on holiday anyway.

I appreciate that I have been very lucky but would not keep them off with coughs and colds which fortunately are rare anyway.

redskyatnight Tue 18-Mar-14 11:48:43

DS was ill on and off for a few months after he started nursery.

DD also had odd bouts of illness in nursery (not so long lasting).

DS has had 3 days off school in the last 5 years.
DD has had no days off in the last 4.

I agree with those who say it gets better when they are older.

Amber76 Tue 18-Mar-14 12:27:37

I think some people are just more prone to getting sick than others - I can count on one hand the number of colds I've had in my life (age 37) and my 2 young kids have never been to a doctor. I am aware that can all change but so far so good.
I am a believer in eating fresh fruit and veg and taking vitamins.
I also don't have our heating on very often - others might think our house is cold but we like it. And I wouldn't bundle kids up in too many layers when going in and out of house.
I am minding them at home, but they have exposure to other kids every day.
Sorry for your situation - it does sound very frustrating.

Onsera3 Tue 18-Mar-14 12:34:13

I think it's not just childhood- it's nursery/school and this climate.

I moved here as an adult and had never suffered as many viral infections as I have here. It's the cold weather, the central heating and London life (eg crowded shops, trains etc) for me. Crowded playgroup for DS with 50 or more kids can be just as bad as nursery.

Family members have recently moved away and have noticed improvement in children's health. Hope for same for us soon!

Cerisier Tue 18-Mar-14 12:36:36

Like Jinty- my two are very rarely ill and DH and I have each only had to take four or five days off in total for the DCs in 18 years. I am a great believer in washing hands when getting home and before eating. It seems to help keep the bugs at bay. I also don't take much notice of anyone feeling wobbly in the mornings. My mantra of "you'll be fine when you get there" seems to be self-fulfilling.

BertieBotts Tue 18-Mar-14 12:39:18

Maybe it is a London thing? DS wasn't and isn't constantly ill, he's 5.

BertieBotts Tue 18-Mar-14 12:40:04

And his diet and probably exercise wasn't/isn't that great, so it's not that he's super-healthy.

BearsInMotion Tue 18-Mar-14 12:44:59

DD is constantly snuffly and had a week off with chicken pox, but I wouldn't say she's often "ill" - chicken pox (hopefully!) only happens once, so I took parental leave for that and only needed one other day off work in well over a year of full time nursery.

PurpleSproutingBroccoli Tue 18-Mar-14 12:45:36

The trouble with "only a cough/runny nose", IME, is that many nurseries don't see it that way. Any rise in temperature when my dd was that age, and they would call me to take her home. Childminder places were like gold dust. During the winter there were months at a time where I could only work part of every week, and that was with a dh who was having to take time off as well. Dd was prone to ear infections - at 15 she's just had a graft to repair one eardrum, which was permanently perforated after bursting so often. We were on this awful cycle of cold... sent home with temperature... ear infection... 3/4 days off... back to nursery/work... day or two of health... the next cold. In the end I had to give up work, which meant moving to a cheaper area with fewer job prospects. My career never recovered. It really is a huge deal for some people.

cory Tue 18-Mar-14 13:08:46

Some children just have late developing immune systems. I remember my mother telling me of one winter when my db was only well enough to play outside for 3 days- and they lived in a healthy area and had a healthy diet.

I otoh was very rarely ill.

Dd seemed to pick up every bug going and get twice as ill for twice as long: I reckon she was weakened by her underlying chronic pain condition. She was the one who became delirious when she had chickenpox.

cory Tue 18-Mar-14 13:11:42

If you do have one of those children whose runny noses invariably turn into croup or ear infections with high fevers it can be very trying to listen to other parents going "oh, mine are never off sick because I don't believe in molly-coddling, I just send them in anyway".

Thetallesttower Tue 18-Mar-14 13:15:11

I was ill a lot as a child, ate organic (or wholefood back then) food, plenty of exercise but I was still ill, just picked up viruses very easily and then they lasted longer with me, I still remember the tonsillitis and glands up and so on. It's not just what you feed them- some children are more vulnerable than others.

I became much healthier as an adult til funnily enough I had my children, then had a couple of years of lots of colds/flu (probably due to lack of sleep/exhaustion) and it's gone back to normal now.

Some people here are rather smug about this, you can feed them all the vits you like and eat healthily but some children are more vulnerable than others although obviously exposure helps (so if at nursery/school all day).

PurpleSproutingBroccoli Tue 18-Mar-14 13:17:09

Must admit that a few comments stung a bit, hence my post above! Dd1 was miserable and her hearing has been permanently affected, never mind my own career/finances. But she's rarely ill now she's in her teens, and her younger sister has never had a single ear infection.

PurpleSproutingBroccoli Tue 18-Mar-14 13:19:21

TBH, if dd2 had been my only child, I'd have had a pretty clear run of it in the early years. She only ever had minor snuffles now and then.

MorningTimesAreHorrid Tue 18-Mar-14 13:22:27

I might not make you feel better at this stage, but hopefully they will have strong immune systems as they grow older.

Our GP always used to tell me that about my DS1 (now 9). He was ill so often, before the age of 4, that he had to see a paediatrician once a month for blood tests to find out if there was a problem with his immune system. They didn't find anything wrong and he grew out of it (he used to be in hospital with chest/eye/ear infections a lot). He had a very healthy diet, it was just that he picked up everything going at nursery.

Now, DS has an in unbelievable immune system. I can't remember when he even had a cough or cold last. At least a couple of years ago. We can all have the norovirus or flu at home & DS just sails through it unaffected. I used to feel very skeptical when the Dr talked about how strong his immune system would become but it has turned out to be true after all.

I remember my DS having a bad cold when he was about 2. Years and years of illness? No.
Is there something else going on?

alarkthatcouldpray Tue 18-Mar-14 13:23:04

Yes these threads always give rise to a lot of smuggery.

IME the ones who simply wouldn't see childhood illnesses as a reason not to work are also the ones who would carp the loudest if they had to actually cover for you if you ended up taking leave to look after sick DCs.

Health is one of life's biggest lotteries.

Thetallesttower Tue 18-Mar-14 13:26:12

That's not to say that I wouldn't do anything if mine were ill all the time. The two things I would do is - use echinacea, this works for me and there's a modest amount of evidence it can lessen colds and- wash your hands before every meal and after every visit to the toilet and monitor this. I am evangelical about this and wash my own about 6 times a day (not that many actually if you count going to the loo)- I work at a uni full of sneezing sick students and I have found that rigorous hand-washing really helps, and you can check the children do it before meals.

Ultimately, though, some people are just more vulnerable- I never get D and V if it comes to our family, but in some families, everyone gets it. I can even feel when I get it but I don't get the vomiting bit, it's just not where I'm weak and I also rarely if ever get food poisoning whereas my husband is much more likely to get both.

PurpleSproutingBroccoli Tue 18-Mar-14 13:26:14

Not sure, Calculators -in our family it seems to just have been the way it was. Two dds, same good balanced diet, no allergies, no food fussiness, no known underlying health issues. Massively different experience of childhood illnesses. But they're both now rarely ill at 15 and 12.

IamaBreastfeedingTramp Tue 18-Mar-14 13:27:23

Give up now OP.

You are about to get a barrage of stealth boasts from people telling you

How strong and healthy they keep their family (as if its not just luck).
How well they juggle work and children.
You are basically too soft and should stop mollycoddling your children as they're not really ill.

They are young, at nursery and probably going through a bad phase. It will pass. Everyone is different, some children have constant infections, others have never been to the Drs. Why is this so surprising to people here?

PurpleSproutingBroccoli Tue 18-Mar-14 13:28:28

In fact, when dd2 was small it was harder to keep things hygienic, etc., as instead of only adults there was an infectious snotty-nosed dd1 toddling about confused.

alarkthatcouldpray Tue 18-Mar-14 13:29:57

And I'm generally amazed at how proud people are that they send in their DCs to school & nursery with low grade temperatures and other symptoms they deem minor. Thereby making them 'man zero' and generously sharing the bugs with those who end up more severely affected. If their children are so robust and have the constitution of an ox they will only have a temperature for a day. Why not keep them off and spare others that particular infection?

When my DD gets a temp she nearly always vomits so I really don't get much choice what to do with her.

VoyageDeVerity Tue 18-Mar-14 13:30:05

I completely agree OP. So much of DDs baby and toddlerhood was spent as a mum / nurse more than anything... Much better now she's 7.

BertieBotts Tue 18-Mar-14 13:34:39

Er, mine isn't a stealth boast. Just surprised is all. Why would it make me a "better" parent that DS happened not to pick up viruses very often? confused

cory Tue 18-Mar-14 13:36:12

same experience as TallestTower: I hardly ever get anything stomach related

my db otoh used to throw up every time he got a cold

so I would be in school blowing my nose and he'd be at home with a bucket

theynevershutup Tue 18-Mar-14 13:39:07

My 2 are rarely ill either although they are 6 and 9 now, but I also make them wash their hands when they get in from school before they eat and when out and about if possible. Also have garlic and onions in lots of meals, but think it's probably luck though more than anything.

Dwerf Tue 18-Mar-14 13:39:56

Different kids seems to have different immune systems, even from the same family. Ds, as a baby and toddler got everything going. Every cold would turn into a chest infection, yet by five years old he was a sturdy child. Last time he went to the doctors they didn't know who he was. I think he's been twice in the last decade. DD1 was prone to ear infections, as was dd2. They have inherited tiny eustatian tubes, I was (and still am) plagued by ear infections. Dd1 also vomits with every illness and injury. Ear infection? Vomit. Stubbed toe? Vomit. Panic attack? Vomit. She missed a lot of school simply because of their 48 hour rule, despite me telling them she's just a vomitous person.

After a longish spell of good health, both dd2 and dd3 came down with several viruses, one after the other. Achiness, upset stomach and lethagy. I'm expecting attendance letters for both of them.

toomuchillness Tue 18-Mar-14 13:41:11

Give up now OP

That is how I feel. I have already said they get exercise, eat healthily, hardly have any sugary sweets. They do wash their hands, they do have vitamins, I can't do much else

Seems like there are loads of people who have only had to miss 1 days work in 18 years because of childhood illness

IdaClair Tue 18-Mar-14 13:48:00

That is not my experience.

Doesn't make me a better parent, or mean I eat better food, or take more bracing walks than you do. Not a stealth boast. Just that it is not my experience to regularly deal with ill children, or Ill anyone for that matter.

Having said that I always thought we would end up doing the take the kids to a&e thing for falling off a step, spraining an ankle, swallowing a penny, that kind of thing as I'd heard that was normal, but we haven't needed to do that either, yet, touch wood (kids combined age is only 9). In case that is apparently smuggery, I was constantly in plaster as a child, so that bit was definitely in my parents' experience.

HiImBarryScott Tue 18-Mar-14 13:48:47

From the age of 0-4, apart from the usual coughs, colds & vomiting bugs my DS1 had:

chicken pox
hand foot & mouth
scarlet fever

He has a really good & varied diet and gets plenty of fresh air and exercise. He was at nursery and most of the kids there had the same bugs too.

He is 9 now and hasn't had a day off school in a couple of years which is great. But instead I have to take time off work with DS3 who is 2 and going through all the same shenanigans. Tis a nightmare.

JsOtherHalf Tue 18-Mar-14 13:52:16

I don't think of DS as being a particularly poorly child, but he has only managed 1 term of full attendance since starting full time school. Ironicaly that was the first term. Since then he has had a number of d&v, so 48 hours off; several chest infections, a couple of viral infections...

School rang me recently at 2pm to pick him up as he was hot with a sore throat...

Dwerf Tue 18-Mar-14 13:53:07

Idaclair, I find that time spent at A&E is wholly down to luck. Some kids bounce and some do not. Ds? One visit in 18 years. Dd3 managed to be sent up there twice in three days for unrelated injuries. I'd been a parent for 14 years before I needed one of them stitching up (and that was the youngest at 4 years old). Not one of them has broken anything yet, now watch one of them be in plaster by the end of the month

JsOtherHalf Tue 18-Mar-14 13:54:51

Eeek @ my spelling.

I forgot to say that DH and I share time off in these circumstances, so it doesn't all fall to me. Occasionally we swap at lunchtime, depending on our diaries.

Sapeke Tue 18-Mar-14 13:58:03

YANBU. I have been there and it's really hard. Don't let anyone convince you it's your fault. Some children are just more susceptible to illness and with all the viruses their exposed to they don't get over one thing before getting something else. I have twins so same diet, same environment, but one of them used to bounce back from colds while the other turned it into a medical emergency. We've left the doctors twice in an ambulance and clocked up a terrible amount of absence in Year 1.
It does get better though and I am actually holding down a job now, which I never thought possible at one point.

myitchybeaver Tue 18-Mar-14 13:58:44

I think it's bad luck, for whatever reason.

3DC and I've barely *touches wood* had a day off work (bar 4 days with chicken pox) with my kids.

Constitution? Maybe. It's not diet - DD2 is a food refuser and lives on chicken nuggets!

Creamycoolerwithcream Tue 18-Mar-14 14:06:38

When my 3 DS were pre school they all got really ill about twice a year each where they couldn't eat, slept all the time, DS3 also had croup a few times. We then had quite a few good years where they missed maybe one day of school every two years. Then 2 years ago DS3 who is a teen was diagnosed with epilepsy after quite a few trips to the hospital and it's tough for him. I think it's easy to take good health for granted.

dietcokeandwine Tue 18-Mar-14 14:28:08

Some kids are just far more susceptible to things than others OP. There's only so much you can do with diet and vitamins! Genetics will play a part too and some of the illness stuff is just pure bad luck. My kids eat a good but not organically perfect diet; I have a friend who is far, far stricter about refined sugar than I am, yet her children are almost constantly ill and mine rarely are.

Different things for different DS1 is nearly 10, has a fabulous immune system and every rarely needs a day off through illness. However, he's also notched up five separate visits to A&E for various accidents, two of which required serious medical intervention/surgery etc. So he might have a great constitution but he's bloody accident prone. Win some, lose some I guess!

Hope your children's health improves soon.

dietcokeandwine Tue 18-Mar-14 14:29:00

rarely ever

FuzzyWuzzywasaWoman Tue 18-Mar-14 14:49:39

I could have written your op myself, you are not alone. I have 3 pre schoolers and they always seemed to have some ailment. I dread winter as I seemed to spend the whole time cleaning vomit from bed sheets, giving Calpol or wiping snot. I am currently on carers leave from work to look after my poor chicken poxy DS.

Before I had DC I hadn't been off sick for about 6 years, I now seem to catch every bug they do requiring time off work (I work with immunosuppressed patients so can't take any chances). I don't know if it's bad luck or genetics, no idea. But like you op I can't do anymore to boost their immune systems/improve diet etc I can only live in hope they improve by the time they get to school.

sisterofmercy Tue 18-Mar-14 15:11:18

I was never ill as a kid (made up for it as an adult - bah!) and my brother was always ill (he is now as strong as an ox). We had the same house same diet etc. Some people are just more prone to catching every bug that goes round.

I suppose the bright side is that your children will hopefully also be as strong as oxen when they grow up too.

WilsonFrickett Tue 18-Mar-14 15:23:20

I do think some DCs are very 'vomity' for want of a better word, and of course that means you have to keep them off school/nursery in case it's something major, when often it's just an upset tummy. If they had the same level of runny nose, you wouldn't dream of keeping them off, iyswim.

DH is very 'stomachy' whereas when I get ill it's usually my throat - much easier to just keep going with some strepsils and paracetamol.

ItsSpringBaby Tue 18-Mar-14 15:23:30

I wasn't that ill as a child, in fact there was a point in my early 20's, that I couldn't even remember what it was like to vomit. And the last major illness I'd had was flu at 18.

Now both DS1 and DS2 are in primary school though my days of boasting are over. It is hell! - every year they pick up something, and if it's not one it's the other, which of course will then spread around the immediate family like wildfire. Due to being pregnant I've been ill virtually non-stop since they returned to school in Jan. I might have send them out in germ masks in the near future!

BraveLilBear Tue 18-Mar-14 15:50:37

Today is my third day off work since returning last Monday. DS was ill once before starting nursery despite running the gauntlet at a children's centre playgroup.

He's been ill now for 4 weeks with various combinations of sore throat/fever/cold/cough.

Makes me feel doubly guilty - bad enough he has to be in nursery ft at 7 months, worse that it's making him so ill.

Dahlen Tue 18-Mar-14 16:14:48

OP I completely understand and want to offer sympathy.

Mine are older now and it has got better, allowing me to push forward with my career, whereas for the first few years I remained in a non-demanding role where time off wasn't a problem because I needed so much of it.

I am rarely ill. My Bradford Factor is excellent. It is an approach I am trying to model for my DC. Unless they are swaying on their feet, the attitude in my house is just get on with it, and if you can't, try to get on with it anyway but with some calpol thrown in. Nothing bar sickness and diarrhoea or a high temperature (and we've carried on with moderate ones) is enough to stop us.

Unfortunately, schools, nurseries and CMs do not take the same approach. OFSTED policy recommends that children are refused from settings if they have a heavy cold - not flu, a cold.

Unless you have particularly resilient children, an understanding relative/friend to pick up the slack, few people reliant on professional childcare (where your child is exposed to more germs than those cared for by a nanny or relative/friend) manage their child's early years without a lot of stress, juggling and time off.

It does get better though. Hang on in there.

toomuchillness Tue 18-Mar-14 16:53:40

Just wanted to say thank you to all the supportive posters thanks

Martorana Tue 18-Mar-14 16:58:22

I don't think I was unsupportive. I think it's very important to question what we consider "illness".

OP- you list molluscum as an illness, for example. It's a horrible, unsightly condition. But it's not an illness- and shouldn't stop a child doing anything they want to do.

GreyGardens Tue 18-Mar-14 17:11:29

Agree with Martorana actually, I don't consider most mild things like runny noses to be 'illness', and generally not worth being off school for.
Whoever said a London thing? That is truly baffling.
London zone 2 here and I think DD has had maybe 2 days off sick in 3 years of school.
I am one of those smug twats who never gets ill either (touch wood obviously).
London doesn't tend to make people ill per se wink.

sweepdoesntlikecrowds Tue 18-Mar-14 17:22:05

I sympathize OP and am having the same experience, I have one ds at pre school and ds2 1.8, they have had ear infections, chest infections, coughs, croup, colds regularly this winter. Ds2 vomits and gets temperatures every time, ds1 is now stronger and shakes things off quicker.

We eat fairly well, despite some fussiness, get exercise, fresh air, air the house, keep heating at minimum needed to keep warm but not stuffy, etc.

I think it's one of those things, friends with young children have mainly same experience.

Today I've found chocolate helps as I can barely keep my eyes open with the sleepless nights we've had recently thanks to teething and colds.

I need summer.

VoyageDeVerity Tue 18-Mar-14 17:24:59

My sister is so god damn smug about what she did to prevent him from being ill as a child. You would think she was a mum or a saint the way she goes on when DD is always ill - are you doing this are you doing that yes yes yes!! I remember her son was weaned on pork balls and sausages.

The fact is he was simply made of very healthy stock with his paternal side never ever ill and like oxes.

DD is like DH. Very pretty! But delicate as a petal and just prone to bloody everything. Nothing we did made any difference what so ever!

VoyageDeVerity Tue 18-Mar-14 17:25:46

A nun

Martorana Tue 18-Mar-14 17:30:09

I'm not suggesting you can do anything to change your child's health. I am suggesting that some people might benefit from changing their view of illness.

cory Tue 18-Mar-14 17:42:10

Considering the attitudes of schools these days (letters threatening prosecution if your child clocks up more than 5 days off) I doubt there are that many parents who keep their children off for a runny nose. Probably far more who send them in with a slightly dodgy tummy or a badly infected throat- because they aren't the ones who have to worry about the immuno-compromised child in the same class.

I remember how I used to quail at the cheery "oh he was sick in the night but he's absolutely fine now and I don't believe in keeping them off unnecessarily". Because I knew my child would be the one who would get whatever it was really badly and be off school for days, resulting in more nasty interviews with the HT, and possibly trips to A&E.

Sirzy Tue 18-Mar-14 17:47:20

Every child is different some are more susceptible to illness that others, some fight off illness better and some don't act ill when they are ill.

DS is regulary ill with chest problems (as in missed 20 odd days of pre school since starting in September) but never seems to have any problems with anything else (touch wood) and when he is ill he rarely acts ill - he just doesn't seem phased by it!

shrunkenhead Tue 18-Mar-14 17:57:12

A lot of it is pandering, you have to be honest.

Losthearts Tue 18-Mar-14 18:03:13

A lot of it is pandering, you have to be honest

This makes me think of a good username I saw on here - FuttheShukup grin

shrunkenhead Tue 18-Mar-14 18:08:37

I agree lot of it is luck, my child is 5 and hasn't missed a day of nursery/preschool/reception. I raised my DD like many of my friends bf/weaned on fruit and veg/vegetarian diet etc and many of theirs are constantly off with ear infections etc

innisglas Tue 18-Mar-14 18:32:46

My daughter's immune system was severely sabotaged by the blythe way doctors used to prescribe antibiotics until the winter when she was seven and she caught everything going around the school and the doctor just kept on prescribing her antibiotics and never questioned her poor immune response. I took her to a friend who was a qualified Chinese herbalist and he gave her herbs to take for three days and she didn't get sick again for two years. Since then I am very cautious about using antibiotics, wonderful lifesaving medicine though they are.

Martorana Tue 18-Mar-14 18:34:53

So- define illness.

As I said, a child needs to tell me/show me they are ill- I don't tell them. If they don't, we carry on as normal.

VoyageDeVerity Tue 18-Mar-14 18:38:59

So if they have a fever of 40 but can't articulate they feel ill you keep on going with the day?

shrunkenhead Tue 18-Mar-14 18:39:13

With you on that one Martarama, what is this mollusc condition I hear of? Please don't tell me it's the proper name for constant green nose!

Martorana Tue 18-Mar-14 18:43:24

I've never met anyone with a fever of 40 who wasn't obviously ill.

Molluscum is a horrible but very common skin condition

LongPieceofString Tue 18-Mar-14 18:49:48

It is down to luck. DS has much better sickness record than DD and they were both breast fed /kept away from Londoninium/ swaddled in angel hair/ baby led weaned on Abel & Cole/ insert whatever else...

Sirzy Tue 18-Mar-14 18:55:58

I've never met anyone with a fever of 40 who wasn't obviously ill.

You have never met DS then!

Temp of 41 not shifting with calpol (can't have brufen) happily playing in A and E - spent 4 days in hospital with pneumonia!

Badvoc Tue 18-Mar-14 19:00:43

God! I love these threads smile
"I have 34 dc and none of them have ever had a day off school ill!"
I have 2 dc and since sept last year they have had (between them)
Tonsilitis x 2
Chest infection
Impetigo x 2
D and v x 2
Ds1 is 10 and at secondary and ds2 started reception in sept.
They eat well, exercise regularly and apart from both having asthma are I would say pretty fit.
Ds2 is currently on month 2 of a wet chesty cough but the dr days it viral so no treatment.
Luckily he sees his asthma dr next month so we might get somewhere...

Losthearts Tue 18-Mar-14 19:05:48
shrunkenhead Tue 18-Mar-14 19:10:22

Never heard of the mollusc condition but now I am enlightened! Thanks.

Badvoc Tue 18-Mar-14 19:13:12

Yes, ds1 had that a few years ago! smile
It does clear up as fast as it arrives.
Very odd.

Losthearts Tue 18-Mar-14 19:19:01

It does clear up as fast as it arrives. very odd

My GP advised 18 months - 2 years for it to clear up

cory Tue 18-Mar-14 19:20:16

Martorana, I remember very clearly keeping well out of my mother's way so she wouldn't realise I had German measles. Fortunately she spotted it (pun unintentional) or I hate to think what that could have done to somebody if I had just gone into school as I intended. I also soldiered on with a badly infected throat until it turned into pneumonia: I was off school for a month.

Children are all different: some will tell you exactly what you need to know, others will exaggerate their sufferings, others again will be embarrassed to let you know that they've just passed out on the bathroom floor (yes, that was me again blush).

Badvoc Tue 18-Mar-14 19:21:33

Yes, it was 18 months for my ds, I meant it goes overnight when it goes.

Pepperglitter Tue 18-Mar-14 19:22:58

I have a 9yo who has never been ill. The only time he has ever seen a doctor was for his 6 week check as a baby. He was bf for a year but his diet now is terrible. He eats about 8 things and won't try anything else. I think it is just luck. The only days he had had off school " ill" are when I've lied an we've gone away for the week blush.

Badvoc Tue 18-Mar-14 19:23:54

My mum sent me to school no matter what was wrong...hence I will never do that to my dc.
Worst one was spending all day in the school sick bay babbling about wizards (apparently) as I was delerious with fever.
Another one was being sent in when I had concussion.
There is such a thing as benign neglect.
Then there's just neglect sad

Badvoc Tue 18-Mar-14 19:24:38

Pepper...yes I agree.
It's dumb luck.

Odaat Tue 18-Mar-14 19:33:55

Yeah some kiddies do seem to be ill lots. My dd has had a cough and throat infection in a year. Oh and thrush on her tongue. The cough lasted a few days and the thrush ... Would that even be counted ? My friends babies in te other hand seem to always be suffering sad
I realise I am majorly lucky (thus far) and hope this luck lasts. I always feed dd lots of healthy stuff and lots of fluids (loads!) plus always socks on feet and well wrapped outside. Basics really ! A runny nose i would not count as an illness by the way.
My dd is very big for her age and probably has our good genes, plus she made me very aneamic in the womb by sucking the iron out of me haha!!

I remember being sent to school, walking through the entrance and vomiting on a pile of other childrens coats.

I bet their parents absolutely LOVED my 'oh, she'll be fine!' parents...

We've got 3dc, not that often ill, but this winter has been really rough. D&v twice in two weeks plus a cold going round the house was a little point.

As was DS and DD2 getting bronchiolitis from a cold DD1 bought home from school and 6wo dd2 getting seriously ill, nil by mouth and on a ventilator in hospital.

Sometimes luck sucks.

I'm just grateful we're coming out of it with just dd2s lungs weakened.

hazeyjane Tue 18-Mar-14 19:41:46

As I said, a child needs to tell me/show me they are ill- I don't tell them. If they don't, we carry on as normal.

As cory said - all children are different. Dd1 could be shivering with a fever and the colour of Kermit and still insist she is fine and ok to go to school. Dd2 revels in the drama and makes a nest to be ill in. Neither of them get ill very often now (6 and 7).

Ds (3.8) really suffers even with minor illnesses, he can't speak to tell us how he is feeling, but it is obvious.

Badvoc Tue 18-Mar-14 19:47:25

It must be incredibly difficult with a child who has sn.
How can they verbalise how they feel?
What if they have sensory issues that mean they can't process feeling ill?

hazeyjane Tue 18-Mar-14 20:20:24

With ds it is certainly a struggle. He fell yesterday, his ankle obviously hurt but he kept trying to stand and walk because he didn't understand that it was going to hurt.

He has wonky pain receptors, so doesn't react to pain like one of my other children would. He couldn't put any weight on it at all so we went to a+e, despite the fact his leg is too painful to put any weight on it, the only time he screamed was when the nurse tried to put a bandage on, because he hates people he doesn't know touching his feet!

VikingLady Tue 18-Mar-14 20:23:03

It really does seem to be the luck of the draw, rather than some magical parenting techniques. I was hardly ever ill as a child - I had 9 cicken pox but no other symptoms, never caught colds, was one of 3 kids in my class who didn't get flu one year, not even German measles. My brother however..... Chicken pox at 6 weeks incredibly badly (still has scars at 30), German measles at 3m, mumps badly enough that we were all very relieved that he managed to father a child recently (there was a lot of doubt about it), and every single other bug going. All of them.

Same parents.

Martorana Tue 18-Mar-14 20:37:22

I would notice if my child had German measles, concussion, dilirium or was the colour of Kermit! Thwt's what I mean by "show" me.

monkeynuts123 Tue 18-Mar-14 20:47:37

Mine were constantly ill too, it's normal and ignore all this nonsense about it's how you define it, people are just having a dig. It went on for years, sickness, colds, infections etc etc, endless calpol and weeks on end where one would get it and the whole family go down. Excellent diet and lifestyle here too. It will come to an end one day.

SugarMiceInTheRain Tue 18-Mar-14 20:47:53

I guess I have been lucky, mine are 8, 6 and 1 month. DC1 and 2 have rarely been ill. DC2 had tonsillitis several times in his first year of school and they had chickenpox when they were at preschool but other than that they haven't been ill enough to miss any school. Fingers crossed DC3 will be the same.

deakymom Tue 18-Mar-14 22:08:51

my son cant really have sugar as it used to make him pass out so he lives on fruit veg and curry (his fav food) he was always sick in nursery but it was so hot in there its no wonder thankfully the reception rooms are not so bad but he is still mega sick all the time just not ill enough to stay at home fortunatly

Martorana Tue 18-Mar-14 22:35:11

" but he is still mega sick all the time just not ill enough to stay at home fortunatly"

What on earth does that mean?

missymayhemsmum Tue 18-Mar-14 22:58:40

Sounds grim, OP. If there isn't an underlying problem it will probably get better when they've had everything that's going round the school at least once, keep going with the vitamins, I'm sure it makes a difference! With the runny nose thing have you considered the possibility of allergy? (says I who spent a childhood and most of adulthood with constant colds/ chest infections/ pneumonia until I worked out that I can't cope with dust, damp, carpets, aerosols or most cleaning products).

GoodnessIsThatTheTime Wed 19-Mar-14 03:07:45

Missy, I too grew up with constant blocked nose... Do you take anti histimines/inhalers now to help? Or spotless house...?

I do think if you/ child is unfortunate to have be asthma/eczema/allergy prone then yes they often ate ill more often, chest infections are serious.

toomuchillness Wed 19-Mar-14 09:09:09

Mine were constantly ill too, it's normal and ignore all this nonsense about it's how you define it, people are just having a dig

Thank you

cory Wed 19-Mar-14 10:04:51

Martorana Tue 18-Mar-14 20:37:22
"I would notice if my child had German measles, concussion, dilirium or was the colour of Kermit! "

If the spots were not in a highly visible place and they kept out of your way as much as possible, if they did not tell you for several hours that they were seeing everything double, or if they did not inform you of the voices in their head because they were afraid you'd think they were going mad, you might not.

A friend's ds (infant school age) did not tell his teacher that he had banged his head at lunchtime and only asked his dad at bedtime why he had two noses! Concussion.

As for me, I sat through the whole first act of La Boheme without realising that dd was hallucinating next to me (toxins from totally unsuspected kidney infection- she had no other symptoms but was very ill).

Otoh one of my brothers would make a massive fuss about the slightest sniffle; if you listened to him you really would think a head cold was a fatal disorder.

Experience told my mother to take anything my db said about his health with a pinch of salt but to watch me extremely narrowly if there were any signs of anything. Somebody who didn't know us might have struggled with this.

Dd is one of those people with a naturally low body temperature, so she will be quite badly affected by fever before she actually feels very hot. Ds has a normal body temperature, so will feel and look hotter but will be less ill.

Dd's school never believed her about her joint pains despite her diagnosis because they didn't show outwardly, but told her she was imagining it and that she had to make an effort. Later we were told by a specialist that this may have done permanent damage to her joints.

I think it all boils down to people being individuals. As a parent, hopefully, you get to know them. But won't necessarily know somebody else's child.

Martorana Wed 19-Mar-14 11:04:26

But Cory- even the most vigilant parent would have missed most of those!

cory Wed 19-Mar-14 11:36:36

True, Martorana.

Except for dd's joint disorder, which I hadn't missed, nor in the end did the rheumatology clinic. But the school spent several years trying to convince dd that she was making a fuss about nothing- because if they couldn't see anything clearly there couldn't be anything there.

I had to endure countless talks from other parents about how I should make her walk because they would never stand for that kind of nonsense and the benefits of this approach were proved by that their children being perfectly healthy. Particularly from my SIL who had a very robust and healthy child a year younger than dd.

Particularly bad in the years before dd was diagnosed, when I had nothing to go on except my mother's instinct that there was actually something wrong with this particular child.

The horrible thing was that I did actually give in to that kind of pressure and make dd do things that I knew were beyond her. We had several serious accidents and, as I said, there is some evidence that her body was permanently damaged by overstrain. All because I could not bear the thought of not belonging to that happy category of cheery no-nonsense parents.

Which brings me back to my point that there is no substitute for knowing your own individual child.

Not least because the same cheery no-nonsense approach that was so disastrous with dd has proved just right for ds.

HobbetInTheHeadlights Wed 19-Mar-14 12:40:43

Being young and at a nursery and school environment - obviously that going to major source of infection and therefore explanation. If you've moved in last few years to new area then IME also tend to much more illness in family as well.

Constant coughs and colds - could be an allergy to mold spores. I was that DC and later developed hay fever and much laster asthma where GP said given time of year mold spores - Sep onwards were likely thing that tipped me over. My DC that was diagnosed with asthma was similar with constant colds.

High mold count are found in houses that have damp washing in - a constant when DC were young for us - can only really air the house.

Only time chest infections were common among us - were when we lived in a very damp mold ridden house - improved upon moving.

I have tried magnesium and zinc supplement as - found some limited research showing being low associated with asthma in small studies but also in frequency of colds. TBH the foods were were eating were low in them but only took minor tweaking to change that.

D & V some years with DC are worse - corresponding to years at school being bad - just bugs going round. conjunctivitis they just seemed to stop getting as they got older.

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