Babies and their bodies give signals when they aren’t feeling well. The most obvious are fever, runny nose, cough or rash. There are also less obvious signals: the baby may seem lethargic or very cranky, not interested in anything or anyone around them, has little or no appetite, spitting up more than usual, or their stools are either very hard or runny. The intensity and duration of such symptoms are also factors that will help you, a nurse, or a doctor determine how to treat them.
Check with your nurse hotline or pediatrician if you're concerned with:
- splotchy skin
- crossed eyes
- not eating
Go to an Emergency Room or Urgent Care facility if your child:
- Has a serious wound, burn or fractured bone.
- Needs a head injury evaluated.
- Needs an X-ray of a possible broken bone.
- Has a cut that may need stitches.
- Has a high fever or other serious illness.
- Has fallen more than 5 feet onto a hard surface.
- Exhibits any condition you feel may need emergent care.
You can also call your pediatrician or nurse hotline for advice, which may save you a costly emergency room visit.
Immediately call 911 if your child is experiencing any of the following:
- Difficulty breathing, such as breathing very rapidly.
- Injury in or by a moving vehicle.
- Serious bleeding or severe burns.
- Fractured leg or other serious fracture.
- Choking on something you cannot help them expel.
- Deformity of the skull—a possible skull fracture.
- Bleeding or clear fluid is streaming from the nose/ear/mouth.
- A condition you feel is life or limb threatening.
Call 911 or yell for someone else to do so. Push the speakerphone button on your phone so you can hear instructions while treating your child.