As a parent, you are your child’s biggest advocate. But when it comes to seeking medical treatment, sometimes it can be hard to know when a sniffle is just a sniffle—or when it could indicate something more serious. Not sure if your wee one’s whimpers merit a trip to the ER? Here are six signs that it might be time to visit the doc:
- Irregular breathing: slow, rapid or raspy breath
- Changes in sleep patterns: napping too much or too little
- Discoloration: skin turning blue, pale or yellow or the sudden appearance of a rash
- Unusual temperament: lethargic or difficult to excite
- Difficulty feeding: can’t suckle or loss of appetite
- Fever: any fever in babies under 1 month old should be seen by a medical practitioner immediately—otherwise call your practitioner if it soars above 100.4 degrees Fahrenheit.
Find out which hospitals near you are equipped to handle pediatric emergencies. “[Any] facility can throw up a sign claiming to have a ‘pediatric emergency room’ without having smaller medical equipment and other necessities,” warns Phyllis Rabinowitz, founder of the R Baby Foundation, so you may need to do some digging. Knowing the best facility to attend should the worst occur could make all the difference in a stressful situation.