Measles in children: Signs and treatments

Early identification of measles symptoms for prompt treatment is essential. This is a common infectious disease in winter – spring. Measles spreads rapidly and can lead to death in young children.

Measles symptoms are common

Measles occurs at any age but is common in young children, especially those with weak resistance, premature birth, and not being vaccinated against measles. When children are sick, they often have the following symptoms:

  • High fever, body temperature up to 38–39ºC.
  • Inflammation of the upper respiratory tract: sneezing, runny nose, inflammation of the upper respiratory tract, prolonged dry cough, hoarseness.
  • Ocular conjunctivitis: eye redness, lacrimation, eyelid swelling.

Fitness typically has 4 stages of illness:

  • Incubation period: 7–14 days, with no symptoms.
  • Onset phase: 2–4 days. Children will have signs of fever as high as 40oC with headache, muscle aches and feelings of prolonged fatigue, inflammation of the upper respiratory tract and conjunctivitis, sometimes acute laryngitis. It is possible to see koplik seeds (small particles of about 0.5–1mm, white, with a reddish erythema) on the cheek mucosa (inside of the mouth, across the upper teeth).
  • Stage of full-onset: lasts 2–5 days After 3–4 days of high fever, the child begins to develop a rash, erythematous maculopapular, when the stretch marks disappear, begins to appear from behind the ears, nape, forehead, neck and spreads to body and extremities . When the whole body grows, the body temperature will decrease.
  • Stage of recovery: The rash fades and turns gray, flaking dark chalk, leaving a bruise called tiger skin stripes. Ban disappears gradually in the same order as when it appears. If there are no complications, the disease will go away on its own but the cough may last 1–2 weeks after.

In atypical form, clinical manifestations may include transient febrile fever, mild inflammation of the eyes, minor rash, and general well-being. This form is often overlooked, causing the disease to spread without even knowing it.

Note that the symptoms of measles in children in the early days of the onset of illness are sometimes difficult to distinguish from other common signs of respiratory infection. Therefore, the following conditions should be considered to suspect a child with measles:

  • Children under 1 year of age who have not had the measles vaccine yet or have not had enough shots
  • Over 1 year old but only 1 shot of measles has been administered
  • Being in an area with measles outbreak
  • Recently exposed to infected areas or exposed to infected people

Is measles itchy?

From the symptoms of measles, it can be seen if the disease in the early stages is not usually itchy; or very little itchy. When the disease is in the rash, the itchiness appears throughout the body. At this time, the child will be uncomfortable, itchy, fussy, anorexia, anorexia, …

Complications of measles in children

Measles virus seriously penetrates the body and can cause children to have high fever continuously for a long time. At this time, the body’s immunity is reduced, if not treated promptly can cause dangerous complications.

  • Diarrhea
  • Corneal ulcer
  • Measles can cause complications as a middle ear infection
  • Acute encephalitis: Young children after rash (1-15 days) manifested as drowsiness, coma, convulsions, headache, nausea, stiff neck.
  • Tuberculosis is caused by a weakened immune system

How to take care of a child with measles

  • Isolate children when they have measles and keep them in a clean, ventilated room away from drafts.
  • Wipe your child daily with warm, clean, soft towels.
  • Wash your baby’s face regularly, wipe her mouth, and change into clean, spacious and comfortable clothes for her.
  • Avoid wind when children have measles.
  • Do not give children allergenic foods such as crabs, shrimp, dog meat, seafood, … stimulating vegetables such as chili, mustard powder, herbs, …
  • When children have measles, they should give them soft, easily digested food and drink enough water, especially fruit juice.
  • Specialized eye drops or physiological saline solution 3-4 times a day.
  • Do not take antibiotics, only vitamin C, B1 high doses. When the child has a constant high fever, cool down the baby as directed by the doctor and quickly take the child to the hospital for monitoring and treatment.

The fastest cure for measles

Measles currently has no specific treatment for this disease. The immune system will eliminate measles virus itself in 7-10 days. The main cure for measles in children is symptomatic treatment.

Pain relievers and fever reducers

Relieve pain and fever by giving your child paracetamol or ibuprofen. Note, do not give aspirin to children to reduce fever because it will backfire, making the disease worse; Can cause Reye’s syndrome. When using any medicine, you need to consult your doctor if you do not understand the medicine. Wipe your baby with a warm towel to reduce fever faster.

Vitamin A

Give your child vitamin A in doses that are age appropriate. Vitamin A plays an important role in the treatment of measles to make the disease faster; Prevent complications that may occur in the eyes and other internal organs of the body. Measles should be given to mothers with measles 2 doses; Each dose is 24 hours apart to ensure the effectiveness and safety of the drug for children.

Clean and good care for the baby

It should be noted not to abstain from water for the baby. However, it is necessary to use warm water to wash the baby’s face and body.

Oral hygiene, nose and throat for children with physiological saline; prevent the spread and spread of measles virus throughout the body; baby faster cure.

Offer liquid, easily digested food, full of nutrients for easy absorption by the body; enhance resistance against virus attacks; since then the disease has also recovered faster.

To reduce coughing for babies, mothers should give children warm water, or lemon honey water.

Give children plenty of fluids to prevent dehydration when they have a fever. Can be replaced by juice, milk provides vitamins and increase resistance. Mothers can give oresol to fight dehydration.

When to get a measles child to the hospital

If your child exhibits the following symptoms, take him to the nearest hospital or facility for treatment:

  • Fast breathing, shortness of breath
  • Systemic rash, constant high fever 39 degrees C – 40 degrees C
  • Tired, refusing to eat, not playing, drowsiness, …

Measles prevention

The most effective way to prevent measles is to vaccinate against measles vaccine for children aged 9 months. In addition, clean living environment such as cleaning floors, toys, tools, sneezing, coughing with hands and mouth, washing hands should be done before preparing baby food and before eating.

The above are clearly identifiable symptoms of measles in children as well as how to care for and prevent measles in children effectively. Hope parents pay attention to help detect disease early and have the best treatment and care to help children recover quickly.


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