There are parasites lurking around to feed on your child’s body. There are a number of ways in which he/she can get infected by the worms. Deworming your child is important. If your child is more than two years old, you must deworm him/her every six months. Worms are very common problem for children. It is also risky for adults. Contamination from worms can happen anywhere.
The consequences of deworming are very dangerous. It can lead to much undesired instances. It causes stomach pain and vomiting in children. Sometimes when it is too late, medication also fail to completely cure. Some of the eggs, laid by the worms, remain inside the body.
However, before knowing the importance of deworming your child you must understand how your child can get infected from the worms. Precaution is the first step of cure. You must be aware of the situation where your child can get contaminated with worms.
Causes of Worm Infection in Children
- Walking on infected ground, barefooted. Worms like hookworm burrow through the tender skin of your barefooted child. If your child goes in the garden or playground in barefoot, then the risk of contamination is high.
- Sometimes eggs of roundworm or whip worms are present in fruits, vegetables and poultry, fish and meat. Having these foods, will infect your child with the disease.
- If the fruits and vegetables are washed with waters which is contaminated then also the chances of infection remains.
- Parasitic worms also get transferred from the pets to the children.
- Coming in direct contact with soil which is contaminated with human faeces can also expose the risk of contamination.
- Not having the habit of washing hands with proper soap and water. Infection can also be caught from open air.
Signs of Worm Infection:
You need to know the signs of infection in your child. There are certain abdominal symptoms that children show. The risk of blockage is higher in case of kids. That is why you need to be more aware of the signs and symptoms of worm infection in your child.
- If visible worms are there in the stools then it is evident that your child is suffering from worm infestation.
- Severe abdominal pain of your child is a direct indicator.
- You child showing sudden loss in appetite could be a cause of worms.
- Mild to high fever is another indicator;.
- Constant wheezing or coughing, which is not getting cured is a concern. Check for worms in such cases.
- Constantly itchy bottoms are a definite symptom. You should check out if your child is feeling uncomfortable while sitting and constantly trying to scratch their bottoms.
- Disturbed sleeping pattern is also an indication that your child is suffering from worm infestation. Your child will wake-up in the middle of the night, without any detectable reason.
- General irritability will be there if your child is suffering from worm. They will become crankier as the worm infestation worsens.
These are the common symptoms of worm infestation in children. However, sometimes we tend to overlook these symptoms and the condition eventually becomes more severe. In such cases the child will show more obvious signs of contamination. The following are the signs that your child is severely infected with worms:
- Swelling of the abdominal area. Bloated abdominal area is a definitive sign that the worm infection has made some serious damage. It can permanently impact your child’s abdomen.
- Tremendous pain in the abdominal area is very common when worm has stayed there for long. It also indicates that the worm has laid many eggs inside your child’s body and it is feeding on it.
- Diarrhea is a common reaction. Your child’s digestive system gets disrupted and the infection reaches the stomach.
- Your child might feel short of breath when the worm infection manifests for a longer time period. It feeds on the hemoglobin of your child’s blood thereby making his body lacking the desired oxygen.
- Your child will lose weight (this happens when your child is infected with tapeworms)
- Anemia (if the infestation is due to hookworm)
- A general fatigue
If such symptoms are visible then you must immediately consult your doctor. Regular deworming not only helps in preventing these outcomes but also helps your child to stay healthy and safe.
How often should you Deworm your Child?
If your child is more than 2 years old, you should deworm him/her every six months. This will help your child to be immune from any further contamination. Also you must teach him or her about regular hygiene. Washing of hands and feet and wearing proper footwear are the basic teachings.
If you have pets, then you must deworm your pets as well. Pets also should be dewormed every 3 to 6 months. Sometimes worms are transmitted from the pet to your child. In that way, maintaining hygiene only is not sufficient.
Importance of Deworming:
- Children who are suffering from regular worm infestation are more likely to miss school and suffer in their studies. Regular deworming helps them maintain a healthy academic routine.
- Deworming protects your child from serious abdominal problems in the future. Worms tend to lay eggs inside your child’s abdomen. This increases the chances of further infection, even after deworming. Bloated or swelled abdomen is not a good sign in children. It can cause serious problems later on in their lives. That is why deworming your child, on a regular basis makes sure that your child’s abdomen is protected.
- By deworming your child, you also help the community by stopping the spread of the worm infection. Deworming your child and pets is essential to save other children from infestation. Worm infection is very contagious. That is why deworming and general hygiene should be maintained throughout your household.
Talk to your doctor about the general dosage and intervals of deworming. This will help you plan out the intervals of deworming your child. Also discuss with your doctors about the means by which you can reduce the risks of worm infestation.