How Do You Know If Your Kids Have Worms?

Has your child lost his or her appetite, does his or her stomach often hurt, does he or she get diarrhea all the time, does he or she grind his or her teeth, or does his or her tail scratch intensely? How Do You Know If Your Kids Have Worms?

How Do You Know If Your Kids Have Worms
Baby children.

You may have an intestinal parasite infection, which is a common problem in children but needs to be detected and treated early to avoid serious consequences such as malnutrition and anemia.

But how does your little one acquire such microorganisms?

Simple: most of these are acquired when there are bad hygiene habits such as not washing hands after entering the bathroom and before eating. When they consume contaminated water and badly washed food, especially fruits and vegetables. And, when they have contact with pets that are not dewormed regularly or with people who carry worms.

According to the pediatrician Aura Sofia Rico symptoms such as abdominal pain, or headache, sudden vomiting, loss or decreased appetite and sometimes, reluctance or changes in temperament in the child could be indicators of this problem.

In addition, Dr. Eugenia Fernández-Goula, a specialist in pediatrics, adds that parasites such as worms tend to descend at night to the region of the anus to deposit their eggs, which produces an abnormal scratch on the area.

These signs usually appear while the child sleeps and can produce a state of irritability and nervousness, causing, therefore, a restless sleep and nightmares.

How Do You Know If Your Kids Have Worms
Mother and Child.

However, to be sure, specialists recommend consulting your pediatrician, who will order a complete clinical examination including laboratory analysis of a stool sample or poop of the child to confirm the presence of parasites and their type.

If the answer is positive, the doctor will prescribe an antiparasitic according to the type of microorganism detected and will indicate the appropriate doses for the age, weight and size of the child.

Therefore, you should never self-medicate the child with purgatives or try home remedies as this may worsen the situation and generate more discomfort and health risks. In fact, experts point out that poorly administered antiparasitic drugs can impair liver function.

Prevention… The Key

How Do You Know If Your Kids Have Worms
Good Habits From The Beginning!

Gastroenterologist Sandra P. gives you some guidelines to follow. In order to prevent these undesirable visitors from lodging in your children’s intestine.

  1. Teaches your child to wash his or her hands after playing with dirt or sand. After going to the bathroom and before ingesting food. It is important to wash your nails well, where parasites can take refuge.
  2. Check the quality of the water you drink, especially when you go on a trip. If you are not sure how good the tap water is, make sure you boil it well before consuming it. Avoid buying juices and soft drinks on the street. Buy only bottles of recognized brands.
  3. Remember to deworm your pets frequently. Consult your vet.
  4. Adults should also be dewormed regularly, according to the doctor’s instructions.
  5. Keep in mind that children under the age of 5 have a developing immune system. So, they are much more susceptible to acquiring viruses.
  6. The person preparing the food should not taste the food in direct cooking and should avoid sneezing on it. You should also wash your hands before cooking.
  7. Thoroughly rinse vegetables and fruits, especially vegetables. These are the most prone to contain parasites, because of their relationship with the soil and irrigation processes. Irrigation processes sometimes are carried out with polluted river water.
  8. When travelling, avoid your little ‘swallowing’ water from swimming pools, rivers and lagoons.

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