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To always think 'meningitis'

(18 Posts)
1wokeuplikethis Sat 17-Dec-16 22:11:55

When my baby is suddenly ill? He has just been sick in his cot and then sick again soon after bath/changing him & now fallen fast asleep again. Temp is 37.8 so not too high. Gave him calpol but he sicked it straight back up.

He has been moany and tired all day. Been fighting off a cold and chest infection all week and his sleep has been terrible this week (10 months) so I put his grumbling today down to that. He has also been off his food today and very cuddly.

But I always think the worst. How the hell do you differentiate between a bug and something more serious when they are so little and unable to tell you what hurts? I hate the guessing game and although he is asleep now I'm worried it is something more serious. Am I overreacting or does anyone else get so worried?

Haggisfish Sat 17-Dec-16 22:17:59

I do. But I also know, rationally, it is unlikely to be that. Ds was seriously ill once and the 'quiet, non responsive' him was awful-no mistaking how ill he was. Get a good thermometer and don't be afraid to give medicine to cool them and phone 111 if you're ever unsure. Nobody ever got cross with me for worrying about dc. Even dd, who screamed blue murder for an hour, very unusually, rushed off to gp and it was just a great big burp she needed. blush

StealthPolarBear Sat 17-Dec-16 22:19:53

It's difficult. Which is why so many babies go to a&e for 'nothing' but better that than the alternative.

cardibach Sat 17-Dec-16 23:12:17

DD is 20. I still always think meningitis, so get used to it OP! I think it's been drilled into us that it's easy to miss (because it shares symptoms with so much else) so we are programmed to think it when we see the possible symptoms (which are very common as they are shared with so much else). Just one of those things.
It's very unlikely it's anything serious, but keep checking his temperature and seek advice if you are worried. Hope he's better in the morning.

1wokeuplikethis Sun 18-Dec-16 00:35:21

Thank yous, he has been sound asleep the last few hours but it's such a worry in the first instance.

Hoping for a happier smilier baby in the morning when he has woken up after getting it out of his system.

bippitybopityboo Sun 18-Dec-16 01:50:22

I'm exactly the same! A few weeks back I called 111 when ds was under the weather and ended up at childrens a and e for a bloody cold!! They said it's so much better to get babies checked if you're worried though better to be safe than sorry!

SingingMyOwnSpecialSong Sun 18-Dec-16 02:07:16

I'm always worried i'll be too blase about symptoms with toddler DD having been a nanny for years. A few weeks I phoned 111 looking for an out of hours appt as her viral lurgy had got suddenly worse but she had a couple of red flag symptoms so we ended up going to a&e in the ambulance they insisted on sending. She was absolutely fine, but all medics were lovely and said they would rather check a wee one out for nothing than miss something big.

Haggisfish Sun 18-Dec-16 02:43:55

You can imagine my terror one night when stoical ds was sick with high temp. Managed to stay calm and treat as s bug. Took him to watch tv when he suddenly said 'my head is really sore' and then ' the tv light is too bright' and his breathing was a bit odd. Off to s and e! He was fine.

arethereanyleftatall Sun 18-Dec-16 10:02:38

I was like this too. I got my dc the vaccine though and I've been much better since. Hope your little one is better this morning.

arethereanyleftatall Sun 18-Dec-16 10:05:07

I remember dd around 1 or 2 said her neck hurt once. I almost had a heart attack. Turned out she meant throat. Thereafter I knew to ask front neck or back neck!

YouveCatToBeKittenMe Sun 18-Dec-16 10:10:08

And you don't stop worrying when they're older either. My dd got meningitis at 18 so now I worry they've all got it when they complain of a headache!!
Sorry that wasn't very helpful!!

MissCalamity Sun 18-Dec-16 10:40:06

Yes, I'm the same but like a previous poster I made them have the men b vaccine, so I'm still anxious when they are ill but no where near as bad as I was!

Trust your instincts & if ever in doubt ring 111. flowers

Quartz2208 Sun 18-Dec-16 10:52:15

I'm the same (not helped by the fact a friends child died of a rare bacterial form). That said Ds has been really ill once scarlet fever that entered the blood stream and he got a non blanching rash. He was really not well then even before the rash appeared so you can tell. Luckily we were at the ooh when the rash appeared so straight to a&e and iv antibiotics. I panic at every temperature now the most recent being a horrific case of hand foot and mouth. The relief when the blisters appeared (he had headache funny feeling in his hands and feet and light sensitivity) was immense even though he was ill for a week I knew what it was

GettingitwrongHauntingatnight Sun 18-Dec-16 11:00:48

I took ds age 4 to a and e as I rhought the same a few weeks ago. Better to be safe.

jgjgjgjgjg Sun 18-Dec-16 11:00:51

OP if your baby has effectively missed an entire feed due to being sick repeatedly then (depending how old the baby is) you may need to seek help. Young babies get dehydrated very quickly so you need to seek help fairly quickly if he/she really can't keep any liquid down.

Depending on how often you are feeding, even one missed feed might mean that the baby is getting no liquid for 6-8 hours which could be dangerous for a very small baby.

GreenTureen Sun 18-Dec-16 11:21:37

I'm the same op and it is really hard to distinguish.

Twice i've taken ds2 to A&E because I thought he had meningitis.

The first time was Christmas Day two years ago (aged 4). He was ill all day with a high temp that we struggled to control with calpol. No other symptoms except being very quiet and lethargic. Then 10pm in the night he woke up (on the sofa) and instantly started screaming that his eyes were hurting because of the light and his temp had shot up. When we got there he had a thorough going over and he was fine, just a 'normal' virus but it scared the life out of us.

The second time was this year, just after he'd had chickenpox. He woke up at 5am one morning crying that he had a really bad headache and then started vomiting...up until then (5 days in) other than the spots he'd been fine and I know meningitis can follow CP rarely so we took him straight in. He'd never had a headache before and I freaked out.

Anyway, I think it's worth bearing in mind that lots of other illnesses will mimic meningitis and to try not to freak out because meningitis is actually very rare...and even when it seems like the symptoms all fit, it's probably still fine. But I would always be cautious and would rather rock up to A&E unneeded rather than risk it tbh.

sunnyshowers Sun 18-Dec-16 12:32:41

My son had mengitis (bacterial ) and he was very tiny. The no mistaking the moan...he was tiny and I didn't know the symptoms. ..but he was a premie so I took him to doc who didn't think anything was badly wrong (virus) but I took him straight to a&e regardless. (He'd stopped breathing the week before so v nervous even though he was my 3rd. )
So when we got there I cried so hard...begged them not to take him off me...I said his neck was sore but I didn't shake him or hurt him. Now that sounds v odd but a 4lb baby was in my arms and I was so so scared because I knew he was v sore and couldn't figure out why. I covered his eyes and nurse asked why. ..I said he'd a headache. ...
He was ripped from me stripped and drips went everywhere....pumping meds into him.
He had a rare bac mengitis and he had a v weak immune system(premie) so we were told he'd a 7% chance of coming out with all his limbs and faculties....and if we'd not come in when we did we would have lost him... (start of temp to drips was 3 ish we moved fast)
But he did and he's the most amazing child. ...the terror never leaves. was this time of year it happened and I do get choked up.

MixedUpConfusion Sun 18-Dec-16 13:25:28

My DS is 17 and I still think that every time he has a headache, even though he had his inoculations when he was little and had the new one for teenagers a few months ago

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