The disease, accompanied by inflammation of the lung tissue, can cause complications that are especially dangerous for children, therefore, the diagnosis and therapy of the disease should be carried out in a timely manner and competently. Treatment of pneumonia in children at home is possible if the disease is mild, with strict adherence to the doctor’s prescription.
Is it possible to treat pneumonia in a child at home
The doctor decides where to treat the disease. It takes into account factors such as the age of the child, the intensity of the symptoms, the characteristics of the disease and the type of pathogen.
It is possible to treat pneumonia at home in children if:
- the child is over 3 years old;
- there are no complications of the disease;
- there is no violation of the respiratory function, in which the airways cannot maintain normal gas exchange;
- the child has no signs of intoxication, such as headache, nausea, vomiting, shortness of breath, convulsions and loss of consciousness;
- it is possible to maintain the conditions necessary for the child’s recovery – a regularly ventilated room with a humidified one;
- air, daily wet cleaning, calm atmosphere, high-quality, easily digestible food;
- parents are ready and able to closely monitor the child’s condition, regularly measure temperature and accurately follow the medication schedule.
When is the best time to go to the hospital
The placement of the child in a hospital is necessary if the disease is severe or the development of complications has begun – tissue death, the formation of purulent abscesses, the involvement of the serous membrane of the lung (pleura) in the pathological process, the accumulation of air in the cavity between its sheets, causing hypoxia. A disease with a complicated course is accompanied by a high temperature, which can be difficult to bring down, severe dehydration, impaired respiratory function, fainting. Hospitalization of the child in the hospital is necessary if the pneumonia has spread to two or more lobes of the organ.
In children of the first year of life, the risk factors for the development of a severe form of the disease include the presence of intrauterine infection and congenital malformations, body weight deficiency, and brain damage. With concomitant chronic ailments of the respiratory system, kidneys, liver or heart, immunodeficiency, as well as if the therapy of the disease did not bring results within 2-3 days, the child is shown hospitalization.
How can a child be treated at home?
Treatment of a disease in a child at home is permissible only with the permission of the attending physician. It defines the therapy regimen that parents must strictly adhere to. In addition to medications, whose action is aimed at suppressing the pathogen and eliminating associated symptoms, physiotherapy, traditional medicine recipes, and massage are widely used to treat the disease. These assistive methods help to improve your baby’s well-being and speed up recovery.
The mainstay of therapy for the disease is the suppression of its pathogen. More often, the disease is caused by harmful bacteria – pneumococcus, staphylococcus, mycoplasma, hemophilic and Pseudomonas aeruginosa. In this case, antibacterial drugs are prescribed to cure the disease. Antibiotics of a wide spectrum of a number of penicillins, cephalosporins and macrolides ( Ceftriaxone , Erythromycin, Clarithromycin , Amoxicillin) are used, sometimes their combined use is prescribed. If no improvement is observed 48–72 hours after the start of treatment, the medication must be replaced, since this means that the agent is ineffective against the pathogen, and therapy for the disease is unproductive.
An ailment caused by a fungal infection is treated with antimycotic drugs ( Ketoconazole , Fluconazole). If the causative agent of the disease is a virus, antiviral medicines ( Relenza , Remantadin) are used.
To combat the symptoms of the disease in a child with pneumonia, use:
- antipyretic, pain relievers (Paracetamol, Nurofen );
- bronchodilators , relieving spasms of the bronchi, allowing them to increase their lumen and normalize breathing;
- immunostimulating drugs ( Immunal );
- probiotics for the normalization of the intestinal microflora, which suffers from the use of antibiotic therapy ( Lactobacterin , Bifidumbacterin );
- mucolytic and expectorant drugs, the action of which is aimed at reducing the viscosity of the mucous secretion and accelerating its excretion (Bromhexin, Gedelix , Mukaltin );
- hormonal drugs that reduce swelling (dexamethasone).
Physiotherapy is used in the treatment of ailments as an adjunct. In the presence of special devices at home, it is allowed to use:
- Inhalation. They ensure the transportation of drugs to all parts of the airway system, help relieve bronchospasm and improve the discharge of secretions from the lungs.
- Magnetotherapy. Due to the influence of the electromagnetic field, blood circulation improves, the pathogenic process slows down, and the viscosity of sputum decreases.
- Ultraviolet irradiation. Stimulates blood circulation, has an anti-inflammatory effect, improves the functioning of the respiratory system.
- KUF therapy. Shortwave ultraviolet radiation has a detrimental effect on the pathogenic microorganisms that cause the disease.
Massage in case of illness helps to quickly remove mucus, activate blood circulation, increase muscle tone, normalize respiratory function and improve the condition of the baby. Drainage massage is performed when the child is lying on his stomach, a pillow is placed under the chest. On both sides of the baby’s spine, stroking movements are made from the lower back to the shoulders, then they are replaced by pinching. This is followed by tapping with the edge of the palm, which is carried out along diagonal lines from bottom to top. The pressure should not be too strong. The procedure ends with light strokes.
Percussion massage involves the use of tapping movements up and down along the baby’s spine and out to the sides. The session lasts 10-15 minutes. The procedure is contraindicated for fever and skin lesions. After the massage, the baby’s cough usually intensifies, as mucus begins to drain.
At home, when treating an ailment in a child, cupping massage is used using special cans made of glass or silicone, which, when placed on the skin, form a vacuum inside themselves. Movements are performed in the direction from the lower back to the neck, from the center of the chest to the sides, use the intercostal space, the abdominal area. The duration of the procedure is 5-7 minutes, after which the child is sent to bed.
Treatment of the disease using folk methods does not eliminate the need for drug therapy, but only complements it. In case of disease, rose hips and leaves of coltsfoot are useful, which are brewed and consumed. Chamomile decoction, mint extracts, Kalanchoe are effective for inhalation. Badger or bear fat is used to rub the baby’s chest, back and feet. The fat of animals, which they store for hibernation, is a storehouse of active substances, has a positive effect on the body as a whole and helps to fight the disease.
With pneumonia in a child, a decoction of pine buds is effective, which helps to fight the pathogen, relieve inflammation and activate immunity. The recipe for the preparation of a drug for the treatment of the disease is as follows: take 1 tbsp. l. raw materials for 0.5 liters of water or milk, bring to a boil and leave under the lid for half an hour. The broth can be taken orally or used for inhalation.
Why is self-medication dangerous?
Incorrectly selected, untimely started or incomplete therapy of the disease leads to intoxication, which is difficult for the child’s body. In advanced cases, the child needs emergency hospitalization, since there is a risk of death. Self-medication of the disease can cause the development of complications, both pulmonary (inflammation of the pleura, gangrene, the formation of purulent foci, edema) and extrapulmonary, when the pathological process spreads to nearby organs and tissues. The most dangerous consequence of the disease is blood poisoning, in which pathogens enter the bloodstream and spread the infection throughout the body.
Therapy of the disease in a child is carried out on an outpatient basis only with an uncomplicated form of the disease. The main condition for home treatment is compliance with medical recommendations and the creation of a favorable environment for recovery. Self-medication can lead to dangerous consequences, up to death, so the first thing that the parents of the baby should do with such manifestations as lethargy, fever, cough and shortness of breath is to see a specialist.