As a mum of six I have probably had most parenting challenges thrown at me in one way or another, but there is nothing worse than seeing your child ill or in pain.
When Abbey was a baby she suffered Febrile Convulsions as a result of a high temperature and although I have made sure I am first aid trained ever since and know what to do for most eventualities it is still the one thing that scares me the most, as I remember seeing her in resus with me in a blind state of panic.
When the kids have a temperature now, I make sure I manage it with some liquid paracetamol (I won’t use Calpol because of all the additives in it), ibuprofen if needed, plenty of water to drink and to get outside for a few minutes if they are up to it as this helps to cool them down.
On Saturday Sebastian started to feel hot and was sick on the ferry between Jersey and Guernsey. If I am honest I didn’t read too much into it as it was stupidly warm on the boat and we were all feeling green, but on Sunday he was off his breakfast and more sleepy than usual with a familiar odour on his breath.
Last year Sebastian suffered with several bouts of tonsilitis and was referred to an ENT specialist. After hearing tests and checks they decided that he had enlarged adenoids but there was nothing to worry about and this winter season he has no problems, I think in part due to us using a Dyson Air Multiplier in his room which has really helped. Typically I cancelled a follow-up appointment for next week as I didn’t want to waste their time.
By Monday it was clear he was really poorly with a temperature of 40.1 and I phoned the GP for an appointment. They were full, as they always are after a weekend, so arranged a triage call sometime that afternoon. I left the receptionist with his symptoms and I have to say the surgery were brilliant and they phoned me back within 5 minutes and got me to come straight down.
He was diagnosed with severe tonsilitis and we spent 15 minutes in the surgery trying to find suitable medication for him as he had an adverse reaction to penicillin last year and I was advised to come back if his condition worsened as they were concerned about his drowsiness.
I normally find that alternating paracetamol and ibuprofen works on bringing down the kids temperature and for the most part it did – always creeping up in the last hour before he was due his next dose, but yesterday he really scared me. Antibiotics normally take between 12-24 hours to kick in, but 24 hours in his temperature was 40.8 and he was listless and very obviously struggling.
I phoned the GP again, who were again full, but this time they couldn’t see him until later on that afternoon, despite me being really worried. He was due another dose of ibuprofen so I gave him that, stripped his clothes off and literally checked his temperature every 15 minutes to see if it was coming down, which it did but painfully slowly. I managed to put together a changing bag for him as I was so close to taking him to A&E.
Thankfully his next dose of paracetamol seemed to bring his temperature down to near normal levels and he perked up enough to play with his brother and sister when they got home from school.
Although we have had an unsettled night I think Sebby is now on the mend and although his temperature is still raised, it is nowhere near as high as it was yesterday and I think we are coming out the other side.
Parenting can be terrifying at times, can’t it?