AS a parent, it can be hard to know when you actually need to take your child to the doctor, and when you’re overreacting.
Thankfully, an ex-paramedic has shared the warning signs of a serious condition that warrants an immediate trip to A&E.
Epiglottitis is a rare infection of the tissues of the epiglottis – a flap of tissue that sits beneath the tongue at the back of the throat.
It has the potential to be deadly because a swollen epiglottis restricts oxygen supply to the lungs.
“It’s one that should be taken seriously because of how quickly it can close off your child’s airway,” she explained.
These four key symptoms to watch out for:
- Excessive drooling
- Severe sore throat
- Difficulty swallowing
The NHS advises parents to try to remain calm while waiting for the ambulance to arrive.
They should not attempt to examine their child’s throat, place anything inside their mouth, or lay them on their back as this may make it worse.
Parents must also try and keep their child calm so they do not get distressed.
Epiglottitis is quite rare in the UK, due to the success of the Hib (the bacteria which causes the condition) vaccination of children.
According to the NHS, deaths occur in around one in 100 cases.