How Sick is My Baby?

How Sick is My Baby?
Photo by CC user Evan-Amos on Wikimedia Commons (public domain)

Babies are prone to sickness including colic, sniffles and colds. Mild colds are normal for infants and are typically not something to be too concerned about. A baby’s immune system is immature and takes a while to build up. However, there is a difference between a baby with a cold and a baby who needs medical attention from urgent care in San Jose. How Sick is My Baby? Here’s what you should be looking for to gauge how ill your infant is.


You know your baby better than anyone. All babies cry and whine – it’s the only way they have to communicate how they feel. You can probably tell when your baby is tired or hungry just from the way they cry, thanks to the special bond you have with him. In many cases, a baby will get better all on his or her own, without medical intervention, but there are times when infants need to be seen by a doctor. Here are some scenarios when you should get on the phone without delay.

Call the Doctor

If your infant is displaying any of the following signs of sickness, you should contact an urgent care or visit a doctor.

  • A fever – Fevers are not uncommon, but if your baby has a fever and he is less than three months old, you should call the doctor. Older babies with a temperature of more than 39 degrees also need checking over. In the meantime, try to cool your baby down with tepid water and give him infant paracetamol at the recommended dose.

  • Rashes – Rashes can be caused by insect bites, allergies, and common childhood illnesses such as chicken pox, but if the rash doesn’t go away when you press a glass on the area and your baby has a fever, it could be meningitis. If there is any doubt, have your baby checked out immediately.

  • Burns – Burns are serious in infants. Any large burn or area of blistered skin needs treatment. Even sunburn is serious in a young baby, so don’t delay.

  • Vomiting – Some babies vomit each time they feed. This isn’t serious, but if your baby is vomiting and can’t keep anything down, he will be seriously dehydrated within a few hours.

  • Foreign objects – Babies and toddlers have a habit of sticking small things up their nose and in their ears. Do not try to extract the object as you may do more harm than good. Instead, take him to the ER and let the doctors sort it out.

Keep a Close Eye on Your Child

Minor illnesses don’t need special treatment, but babies can go from mildly to very sick in a short span of time. For this reason, it is essential that you keep a close eye on infants who appears unwell – and if you are even slightly concerned, call your doctor right away. In the case of an emergency, it is always imperative to dial 9-1-1.