Should you need urgent health advice please contact your GP or call NHS 111. In an emergency please visit A&E or call 999

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Childhood illnesses: A guide for parents and carers of children 0-5 years

Every parent or carer wants to know what to do when a child is ill. This handbook  by NHS Birmingham and Solihull Clinical Commissioning Group will help you to care for your child at home, to know when to call a doctor and when to contact the emergency services.

Being poorly is an everyday part of growing up, which can be helped with a chat with your health visitor or midwife. Almost all babies, toddlers and children aged up to five will also get the most common childhood illnesses like chickenpox, colds, sore throats and ear infections. While these are not very nice at the time, they are easy to treat with a visit to your doctor and then cared for at home.

This handbook has been put together with help from doctors. If you are worried you must get further advice. Trust your instincts you know your child better than anybody else. More often than not something that can cause worry, like a high temperature, can be caused by a cold, which can often be sorted out with a quick trip to your local pharmacy. It is so easy to panic and rush your child to Accident & Emergency (A&E) when they might just have a simple cough or cold which can be treated at home. If you are worried, you must of course go and see your doctor – but finding out a little more about the common, everyday illnesses will help you learn more about what to do and where to go to get help.

Take a look at the handbook by NHS Birmingham and Solihull Clinical Commissioning Group.

ChatHealth Logo

South Warwickshire NHS Foundation Trust runs a confidential secure text messaging service for parents of children aged 0-5 years called ChatHealth. The service operates Monday to Friday between 9am and 4pm, excluding bank holidays. All texts will be responded to by a health visitor within 24 hours. Outside of the service working hours, you’ll receive a message back to inform you that your text will be responded to once the service reopens.

Should you require urgent health advice in the meantime, please contact your GP, visit an NHS walk-in centre or call NHS 111. For emergencies, dial 999 or visit A&E.

This page was last reviewed on 13-04-2022

This page will be next reviewed on 13-04-2025