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Treatment for Viruses in Children

Viruses are microscopic organisms which cause infection. There are millions of different types and many different strains of each type. Patients hoping for a quick prescription must get irritated by doctors telling them, ‘It’s just a virus’ but it’s usually true: viruses can cause fever, headache and muscle aches, sore throat, earache, hoarseness, coughs, swollen glands, rashes, tiredness, poor appetite, vomiting, diarrhoea, cold sores, joint pains, chest pains and many other symptoms!

Timage 34 Treatment for Viruses in Childrenhere are few effective treatments for viral illnesses. Antibiotics do nothing unless a patient has developed a bacterial illness on top of their viral illness (for example, sinusitis after a cold). The drugs which are effective against viruses are used mainly in hospital and in patients who have poor resistance to infection because of other illnesses. Doctors are very cautious because they do not want to risk viruses becoming resistant to anti-viral drugs in the same way that bacteria have become resistant to antibiotics.

The good news is that otherwise healthy adults and children have a good natural defence against these organisms and the vast majority of viral illnesses will heal without causing damage to the tissues of the body.

What you can do…

  • With viruses you treat the symptoms.
  • Call the doctor if there are any of the worrying signs.

Doctors will not usually prescribe antibiotics unless there is a secondary bacterial infection.

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