Throat pain, swollen tonsils, fever, painful swallowing and more are all common symptoms we are seeing in the nurse’s office and currently more often them not we get a note back from the parent that their child indeed has Strep Throat.
Strep throat, which is more common in children, is running rampant in the school right now. This highly contagious bacterial infections can occur anytime of the year, although it tends to show up in late fall to early spring. The bacteria that causes Strep throat loves when people are in close contact and flourishes.
So what should you look for?
Signs and symptoms include:
- Throat pain that usually comes on quickly
- Painful swallowing
- Red and swollen tonsils, sometimes with whit patches
- Tiny red spots at the back of the roof of the mouth
- Swollen, tender lymph nodes in your neck
- Nausea or vomiting
- Body Aches
Since many of these symptoms could be something else, it is important for your child to be checked by their pediatrician. They can run quick tests specifically for Strep Throat.
“OMG my child has Strep…now what?”
If your child is diagnosed with Strep, they likely will be treated with an antibiotic. In addition, they might suggest over-the-counter pain relievers such as ibuprofen or acetaminophen to help with the throat pain and reduce fever. With treatment, your child should start feeling better in a day or two. If they are not, it is important to call your doctor back.
Make sure your child to gets plenty of rest and drink lots of water. Other remedies may help soothe your child as well such as…
- Eating easy to swallow foods such as broths, mashed potatoes, yogurt etc.
- Gargle with warm salt water
- Using a humidifier
- Stay away from irritants especially cigarette smoke.
When can they return to school?
Once your child has been on antibiotic for 24 hours with no fever, they can return to school.
As with every illness, we can help prevent the spread by drinking plenty of water, getting enough sleep and keeping our hands clean by washing our hands.