An eye on common childhood diseases An eye on common childhood diseases

According to UNICEF, pneumonia, diarrhea, malaria and chronic malnutrition are curable childhood diseases. It is up to parents to prevent and notice their symptoms.

Pneumonia: This is an infection in the lungs. The key is to follow treatment and address the symptoms when they arise. If the child goes to day care, the recommendation is for parents to talk to their pediatrician to find out if the pneumococcal vaccine is appropriate. This will help better protect the child.

Diarrhea: The main causes of diarrhea are gastrointestinal infections, colds, antibiotics and the excess consumption of fruits or juices on a daily basis. It can also happen to children with enzyme deficiencies or children who are teething, due to the increased amount of saliva the baby produces when their teeth are coming in. Dehydration is the main cause behind diarrhea-related deaths.

Malaria: Because its symptoms are similar to those of pneumonia, a misdiagnosis can lead to inadequate treatment. This disease is also one of the main causes of anemia among children. To prevent malaria, it is important to use mosquito nets in doors and windows.

Malnutrition: During the first six months of life, it is important for babies to be exclusively breastfed. Later, they can start a diet that is rich in nutrients, especially iron and folic acid. If they are not consumed in the right amounts in the first three years, children may become anemic, affecting their behavior and ability to learn for the rest of their life.