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Sore Throat, Headache & 3-month old. How long would you wait b4 calling NHS?

(17 Posts)
TurtleAnn Wed 22-Jul-09 19:12:30

I have had a sore throat & headache for 1-day, I am starting to get a runny nose but I don't have a temperature.
I feel under the weather.

I have a 3-month old who is getting grumpier but no temperature, feeding well and sleeping normally.

When would you call the NHS?
Who would you call? NHS direct, GP
And, what do you say "I feel under the weather I am worried in case it is swine flu and I have a 3-month old baby'?

I am over-anxious because DS has already spent 3 days in hospital (when he was first born) and it is an experience I never want to repeat.

PrefetParfait Wed 22-Jul-09 19:14:21

I wouldn't. I would self treat my symptoms (ibuprofen) and monitor your DS closely. Call if your DS starts to show symptoms. Nothing can be done for him until then.

pootle09 Wed 22-Jul-09 19:18:33

I would wait until I had a temperature or if there was a rapid decline in the way I was feeling - same for your baby.

It's your call though, so do what you feel best with.

vjg13 Wed 22-Jul-09 19:21:05

NHS direct will just tell you to ring your GP.
Agree with PrefetParfait about paracetamol etc at home. Wait until one of you has a temp over 38 before you ring the GP.

hazeyjane Wed 22-Jul-09 19:21:55

Be aware that if you want your ds to have tamiflu, then they are supposed to have it within 48 hours of showing symptoms. Dd1 is 3.4 and has asthma, but when we rang nhs direct they said that although it sounded like swine flu, she was too late for tamiflu.

I hope your lo and you are

TurtleAnn Wed 22-Jul-09 19:22:45

Can we give Tamiflu to 3-month olds?

PrefetParfait Wed 22-Jul-09 19:23:39

Please don't "clog up" the NHS services unless you need their advice or would like to be prescribed tamiflu.

I believe that you need a FEVER (38+) AND 2 other symptoms before you will be diagnosed with swine flu. And then I would say you only need to call someone if you need medical care (for the usual problems - trouble breathing; unable to control fever etc.) that teh GP can do something about OR if you would be prepared to take Tamiflu (I wouldn't as an adult BTW as the side effects are crap and it doens't actually do anything significant).

However, I would call - probably your GP if your DS spikes a temp (and potentially with less symptoms if you end up with it).

vjg13 Wed 22-Jul-09 19:27:16

By 6 year old daughter is on tamiflu having had a temp of 39, sore throat, dry cough and is very lethargic. She has had no side effects from taking it and I think it was the right thing to do. It is precribed as a syrup for babies under 1.

TurtleAnn Wed 22-Jul-09 19:28:18

I work for the NHS so under normal circumstances I would have to be near deaths door before calling them - It is sad how tainted my view has become!

But now I have a little DS to worry about, but even then can they actually do anything?
He will have asthma (as Mum and Dad do), he has bad excema, he is probably allergic to eggs (as he reacted to his jabs).

I am planning to monitor DS and keep self-medicating. DH has agreed to handle the night feeds. I just don't want to be the Mum who missed something.

TurtleAnn Wed 22-Jul-09 19:30:32

Thanks VJG. I hadn't realised Tamiflu came as a syrup. I do actually feel reassured that something can be done if DS gets it, if I have it. If if if, I hate this if'ing.
I am not a Dr, I just work for the NHS.

hazeyjane Wed 22-Jul-09 19:33:46

PrefertParfait, isn't NHS Direct a service for people to call if they have medical concerns?

I have found them really helpful in the past whenever i have been worried about a medical situation, whether for myself or dc's. I would hate to think I am 'clogging up' the system.

snoops Wed 22-Jul-09 19:36:22

hi, I have a 15 month DD and my DH with swine flu at the moment. I waited until they at least 2 symptoms and called nhs direct.. they urged me to call the OOH DR and then i was told to go to A&E immediately (1.30am) to get tamiflu for DD only. It does not stop the flu and only helps build anti virals. monitor closely DD and DH had 38+ temp and headache, runny bottoms, nausea and a terrible throat (DH only) they are both getting better now it has been 6 days. I have had some symptoms but not had it too bad. Get calpol in for little one and paracetomol/ cold flu remedy for you.It does pass and you can get better.. I understand the fear but having had the 2 most important people to me have it i can say we are coming out the other end now.

PrefetParfait Wed 22-Jul-09 19:43:48

It is. But NHS direct can't actually do anything other than advise you who to call. If you need treatment you need to call someone that can provide you that.

The only reason that I mention 'cloggin up' (for want of a better phrase) is that at a moment the demands far exceed the capacity with call back times in excess of 12hrs I believe. Some of this I believe is to reassure people that are panicking about swine flu and for which they are giving basic sefl care advice - which TBH is what it is there for - and all they can do.

However that self care advice is available on the NHS direct swine flu help page (and will be offered in abundance on MN). I suspect that if half the people that are currently ccalling NHS direct with swine flu related queries were to read the info on the web - if they can access it - then it will help the burden on the service. It will allow people that have more "serious" concerns to access the info that may save their life quicker - (swine flu and non swine flu queries).

All I am saying is that I don't think there is necessarily anything for OP to gain by calling and may prevent someone with more serious needs to access the service. I would also like to say that I only say this WRT to the current circumstances - and only because the type of info the OP would be looking for is freely available on the NHS direct website (and she clearly has web access as she is posting here).

TurtleAnn Wed 22-Jul-09 19:53:15

Advice/ Symptom Checker on NHS website is NOT for under 5's and there is no advice for under 1's.
Having scoured the NHS databanks for info about Tamiflu for 3-months old, it was a Mumsnetter that had the facts.

PrefetParfait Wed 22-Jul-09 19:58:14

But you (at this stage) are not asking for advice about DS. At least you are not asking for advice about a DS with flu like symptoms. You have possible symptoms. And I (and others) have advised you to be cautious with you DS and to contact your GP at first sign of symptoms.

vjg13 Wed 22-Jul-09 20:19:49

It will be so much better when the dedicated Swine flu hotline is up and running.They should be able to give advice, check your symptoms, issue a voucher and tell you where to collect Tamiflu from.

I phoned NHS Direct on tues am and the first recorded message tells you to contact your GP for a flu type illness and only stay on the line for serious illness (due to the current call volumes).

TurtleAnn Thu 23-Jul-09 19:09:20

So DS got a temperature today and I panicked (naturally, 1st time Mum, no experience of sick kids) and called the swine flu helpline, who directed me to my GP, who told me my thermometer was crap and I should buy an ear one.
Panic over, big relief.

Did think the phone line was funny though...
I started with 'I have a 3-month old son with a temperature' and they asked...
Can he move his chin to touch his chest?
Can you ask him if he has a headache?

After I explained he was 3-months old and hadn't developed reliable head control yet and wasn't able to speak (the lady suddenly got very distressed and said it sounded serious that he couldn't speak) and reminded her a second time that he was a 3-month old baby, she refered me to the Scottish NHS to contact my GP - I live in London!

Bless, its only their first day and they are bound to have teething problems (he he not trying to be funny on a Mums website! - slightly insanely happy DS isn't sick)

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