Infections in children – Infection guide

It is common for children to get infections, especially during the first years of preschool or other childcare. Some diseases get infected before the child has clear symptoms. Here you can read about how it is infected and whether the child needs to be home from preschool or school. Each infection has a link to more information.

Children build up their immune system for several years. Some diseases have children several times, others they never or once.

This guide is about common infections that can infect children, especially children up to about 8-9 years.

Contents

So the infection spreads

Infections can spread in different ways. These are the most common:

  • Through direct and close contact, usually through the hands or via hugs and kisses.
  • Via drops in the air when someone coughs or sneezes.
  • When drops or contamination are found on objects that you take in.
  • Via the air, even at a distance
  • Through food that is infected.

Read more about the different ways of getting infected, and what you can do to avoid getting infected.

When can the child go back to childcare or school?

It is important that the child is adept enough to be able to be with others throughout the day and participate in the usual activities.

If the child has vomited or had diarrhea, they need to have been healthy for some time before going back. Read more in the section on stomach ailments.

Some children need to take it calmer after a period of illness, for example, they may be a little sensitive to infections.

Many municipalities have their own routines and guidelines that apply to their preschools and schools. Some preschools also have local guidelines. Ask the head of the preschool or school if you are wondering.

Infections cannot be completely avoided

Infections are a part of life. The usual infections are there all the time and are almost impossible to keep away from completely. For some of the common infections, the consequences are not so great. They therefore do not require the child to be home. The infection spreads easily throughout the child group and some children do not get any symptoms. This makes it difficult to avoid infection.

Healthy siblings do not need to be home for preventative purposes.

Should I seek care?

It is very different whether the child needs care or not. Some illnesses almost always pass by themselves. Read more at each section and click on for more information.

Some diseases are considered extra important not to spread. Therefore, you should contact the health care provider if you suspect that the child has had such a disease. The doctor must report it according to the Infection Protection Act to prevent the spread of the infection.

The preschool should have routines to stop the infection

The preschool should have hygiene routines to break and prevent the spread of infection at the preschool. The municipality’s environmental committee checks that these routines are carried out properly.

Epidemic meningitis – infectious meningitis

Epidemic meningitis is a serious but very rare disease. It is caused by different types of meningococcal bacteria.

It spreads through close contact, for example through the droplets that are in the air when someone coughs, sneezes. Infection can also be spread by taking in the matter that the drops have ended up on. The vast majority of those infected do not become ill.

Children older than two months can receive vaccines against epidemic meningitis.

Symptoms

The child often becomes very ill quickly, gets a fever, feels sick, vomits and gets a headache. They can also become confused, lethargic or unconscious.

The child may have a rash. Then blue-red dots or bruises occur on the arms, feet or upper body.

Children older than about two years can become stiff in the neck. However, it is uncommon in younger children.

So long does it take from infection until the child is sick

It usually takes a week from the baby to become infected.

Treatment

Seek immediate medical attention if you suspect a child has had a meningococcal infection. The child needs to be hospitalized and receive antibiotic treatment. Related relatives also receive antibiotics for preventive purposes.

The doctor must report the disease according to the Infection Protection Act.

Should the child stay at home?

The child can go back to preschool or school when they are home again and have enough energy to cope with a whole day’s activities.

Fifth illness

Fifth disease is a viral disease that is most common in children between the ages of two and fifteen. It infects through the drops that spread when someone coughs or sneezes. Children can carry the infection without getting sick themselves or getting any symptoms.

Symptoms

Children usually have mild problems. It usually starts with a rash on the cheeks. After a few days, the rash can spread to other parts of the body, especially to the outside of the arms and legs. Sometimes the rashes itch and they can also feel warm. They usually disappear after about a week.

Sometimes children get other problems. It can be fatigue, fever, pain in the body, feeling sick or having diarrhea.

So long does it take from infection until the child is sick

It takes about ten days from the time the baby is infected until they get sick. But it can take between one to three weeks.

Treatment

The disease goes away by itself.

Should the child stay at home?

Yes, if the child has a fever or is feeling otherwise. A child with a fifth illness can go back to preschool or school when they have been fever-free for a day, even if the rash remains. The child should be able to be in a group of children all day and participate in the usual activities.

Cold

Colds are caused by viruses and are the most common infection in children. It infects through the drops that spread when someone coughs or sneezes. The child is infected some day before the cold breaks out and then for a few more days.

Symptoms

When children get a cold, it is most common that they get stuffy noses, sneezes and that there is a chatter. The child can also get a sore throat, cough, be a little hoarse, headache or fever.

So long does it take from infection until the child is sick

It takes between one to three days from the time the child is infected until they become ill. The cold usually goes away by itself within one to two weeks.

Should the child stay at home?

The child needs to be at home if they are tired, have a fever and cannot cope with childcare or school. The child should be able to be in a group of children all day and participate in the usual activities.

Tonsillitis

Neck flux is an infection of the tonsils caused by viruses or bacteria. Most often it is due to streptococcal bacteria. Streptococci are spread via direct contact, for example via hands or through brushes. It also infects through contact with objects that someone who is sick has touched, such as toys or towels.

The disease gets infected from any day before the child gets symptoms and several weeks afterwards if the child does not receive treatment. When treating with antibiotics, the child does not usually become infected after two days of treatment.

Symptoms

Children usually have a fever. The tonsils usually swell up and hurt. It usually hurts to swallow.

Younger children who have throat flux may have difficulty saying where it hurts. They often show that they are in pain because they do not want to eat or drink. Children can complain of headaches, pain in the ears and stomach ache

Children rarely get cold, they don’t usually have a cough or anything runny.

Children younger than three years usually do not have a sore throat, but instead get a fever and sniff with thick leash.

So long does it take from infection until the child is sick

It takes between two to four days from the time the child is infected until they become ill.

Treatment

Streptococcal infections are often treated with antibiotics for ten days. Read here about when to seek care for neck pain.

Should the child stay at home?

Yes. If the child has had an infection with streptococci, they can return to child care or school after at least two days of antibiotic treatment. But the child must be is so attractive that they can be in a children’s group all day and participate in the usual activities.

Hepatitus A

Hepatitis A is caused by a virus that causes inflammation of the liver. Hepatitis A infects through contaminated water and also through food. The infection can also be transmitted between people, from stools through the hands to the mouth. Children are most often infected when traveling abroad.

Children under the age of five rarely get symptoms and can therefore infect others before it is clear where the infection is coming from.

There are vaccines against hepatitis A that can be given for prophylactic purposes from the age of one year.
Once you have had the disease you cannot get it again.

Hepatitis A is also called jaundice.

Symptoms

If a child suffers from an illness, they tend to be similar to the inconvenience caused by a child in flu. There is usually a fever and pain in the muscles and joints.

After about a week, the inflammation of the liver can be manifested, for example, by the whites of the eyes turning yellow, the urine becoming darker than usual and if the child has a lighter complexion, the skin looks sunburnt. Children can have these symptoms alone, without those reminiscent of the flu.

So long does it take from infection until the child is sick

It usually takes four weeks from the time the child is infected until they get sick, but it can take between two to six weeks.

Treatment

The disease goes away by itself after a few weeks. Most people become completely healthy, but you can be tired for a long time afterwards.

If you suspect that the child has hepatitis A, contact your health care provider. The doctor should report the disease according to the Infection Protection Act.

Should the child stay at home?

Yes, children with hepatitis A should be at home for at least the period the child is deemed to be contagious. If the child has childcare or goes to school, you need to talk to the child’s doctor for advice on when the child can go back there.

Hepatitis B

Hepatitis B is caused by a virus that causes inflammation of the liver. The virus is infected primarily through blood. It is usually required that blood from an infected person enter the bloodstream of the person being infected. Children carrying the infection usually become infected when they are born. If it is known that the pregnant person carries the hepatitis B virus, the child may be treated with immunoglobulin and vaccinated immediately after birth.

You get infected about six weeks before you get sick and three to six months, sometimes longer, after feeling healthy. It is common to get no symptoms, most younger children do not have any or mild symptoms. Children under the age of five rarely get symptoms, but carry the infection.

Hepatitis B is also called jaundice.

Symptoms

If children have symptoms, it often comes incrementally. First, they can get headaches, fever, be very tired, get sore joints and general body pain. Then they may have stomach upset and yellowish skin and eye whites.

So long does it take from infection until the child is sick

It takes between two and six months from the time the child is infected until they become ill.

Treatment

The disease usually passes by itself.

If you suspect that the child has hepatitis B, contact your health care provider. The doctor should report the disease in accordance with the Infection Protection Act.

There are vaccines against hepatitis B that can be given to children and adults who are at risk of infection. The child should receive the vaccine as soon as possible and within two days in case of suspected infection.

Should the child stay at home?

If the child has childcare or goes to school, you need to talk to the child’s doctor for advice on when the child can go back there.

Head lice

Head lice are found in the hair and near the scalp. They spread through contact hair to hair. Head lice have nothing to do with hygiene. The head lice do not spread any disease.

Symptoms

Usually it scrapes a lot in the scalp if the child has lice, but it is possible to have lice without it itching. You can detect lice or lice in the hair or scalp by combing the hair over a white surface.

Treatment

Head lice are treated with lice containing dimethicone combined with lice combing. Both drug and lice comb can be purchased at pharmacies. Treat twice every seven days. Only those who have live lice should be treated.

Should the child stay at home?

No. If the lice have been properly treated according to the instructions for use, the child does not need to be at home. Contact hair to hair should be avoided until both treatments are done. It is good to notify the childcare or school if the child has had a lice. Then, in turn, they can give information that it is loose, so that everyone in the children’s group can be examined and combed at about the same time.

Autumn Blisters

Autumn blisters are a viral infection that causes the baby to develop blisters. The disease is most common in children under the age of ten. The infection spreads from person to person through close contact, especially through the hands.

If the child has had autumn blisters once, they usually do not get it again. Should it return, it is less gentle than the first time.

Symptoms

The baby gets blisters, often in the mouth or on the lips. Sometimes the baby can get blisters on his hands, feet or tail. The blisters in the mouth can hurt so the baby does not want to eat. Fever is common. Some children get no symptoms at all.

So long does it take from infection until the child is sick

It takes between three to seven days from the time the child is infected until they become ill.

Treatment

The infection goes away by itself.

Should the child stay at home?

How the child will decide if they should be at home. When autumn blisters are detected at a preschool or school, the infection has often already spread. It is therefore difficult to stop the infection by keeping children with blisters at home. Children can go to preschool or school if they feel good and can be in a children’s group and participate in the usual activities.

Influenza

Influenza is a viral disease that is most common in Sweden during the winter. It is very contagious and spreads with the exhaled air. Influenza virus infects from one day before and up to seven days after the first symptoms.

If a child gets the flu, they may not get the flu again for several years. But the flu virus comes in a new form almost every year. Therefore, there is always a risk that the child may become infected again.

Symptoms

If the child gets the flu, it is common for them to suddenly have high fever, headache, muscle pain, neck pain, cough and red sore eyes. Children can also have diarrhea, feel sick, vomit and have stomach ache.

So long does it take from infection until the child is sick

It takes between one to three days from the time the child is infected until they become ill.

Treatment

Influenza passes after three to five days. Children who are otherwise healthy do not receive the flu vaccine. However, influenza vaccination is recommended for children who have an increased risk of having a serious illness, such as children with heart disease, severe asthma or other lung disease.

Should the child stay at home?

How the child feels whether the child needs to be at home. The child does not need to be home for the sake of the infection. If the child has childcare or goes to school, they should be able to be in a children’s group all day and participate in the usual activities.

Whooping cough

Whooping cough is an infectious disease caused by bacteria. Most children have protection against the disease because vaccines are part of the general vaccination program. Whooping cough spreads in the air when someone coughs or sneezes.

It is important to try to protect older people and children for one year from becoming infected.

The first dose of vaccine, given at three months of age, is not enough to protect against whooping cough.

Sometimes adults or children can get whooping cough even though they have been vaccinated or have had whooping cough before. This is because the vaccination does not provide lifelong or complete protection.

Symptoms

Whooping cough starts as a common cold. The child may cough, sore throat and sometimes a little fever. After a couple of days, the child coughs more and more, and after one to two weeks the cough becomes difficult and becomes cough attacks.

The cough has a tough mucus and during the attacks the child coughs until they lose their breath. When the child finally draws in air, there is a beeping or wheezing sound called peeking. Often, the cough attacks end with the child vomiting up mucus.

So long does it take from infection until the child is sick

It usually takes one to two weeks from the time the child has become infected until they become ill.

Treatment

Contact the health care provider if you suspect that the child has whooping cough.

The disease can last up to ten to twelve weeks from the first symptoms. For most people, whooping cough goes away by itself and most do not need treatment. However, children under one year and children with some chronic illnesses usually receive antibiotics to make the disease more mild. For children under one year the infection can be serious. They may need hospital care.

Should the child stay at home?

What determines is how the child is feeling. If the child is fever-free and has regained the energy, they can go to preschool and school again, even if the cough remains. The child should be able to be in a group of children all day and participate in the usual activities.

Mononucleosis

Glandular fever is usually caused by a common virus, most of which is infected when they are one to six years old. It is usually spread through saliva from person to person. It can be contagious if you share a spoon or brush someone who carries the virus. Close and repeated contact is needed for it to become infected.

Many carry the virus but few get sick.

Symptoms

Children usually have no symptoms at all. If they get symptoms, they are mild, as in a common cold.

So long does it take from infection until the child is sick

It usually takes between four to six weeks from the time the child is infected until they become ill.

Treatment

Glandular fever often goes away by itself within two to three weeks. It is common to feel tired for a long time, sometimes for several months after the infection.

Should the child stay at home?

What determines is how the child is feeling. If the child has childcare or goes to school, they should be able to be in a children’s group all day and participate in the usual activities.

Stomachflu

Stomach disease is usually due to an infection caused by a virus, but can also be caused by bacteria or parasites. Stomach illness is common in children staying in children’s groups and spreads easily.

Symptoms

When children have stomach ailments, it is common for them to vomit and have diarrhea. They may also have a stomach ache and a fever.

So long does it take from infection until the child is sick

It usually takes between one to two days from the time the child is infected until they become ill.

Treatment

Most stomach infections go by themselves. If the child has water-thin diarrhea or vomiting, it is important that they get enough fluid. Read about when you need to seek care for the child.

Should the child stay at home?

Yes, children should be at home when they vomit or have diarrhea.

They can go back to preschool or family daycare when they eat as usual and have not vomited or had water-thin diarrhea for at least two days.

Children who attend school should stay at home for one to two days after they become healthy.

The child will also be able to cope with a whole day’s activities with other children.

Healthy siblings and other relatives do not need to be home for preventative purposes.

Mollusks

Mollusks are harmless, skin-colored nodules on the skin caused by viruses. Mollusks infect skin against skin upon contact, but the disease is not very contagious.

If you have had mollusks once, the risk of getting mollusks again is very small.

Symptoms

The knots are two to five millimeters in size, have a small pit in the middle and are usually found on the abdomen, arms, face or neck. They usually have the same color as their own skin, or are a little pink. On dark skin, they are often lighter than their own skin.

It takes so long from infection until the child has a rash

It can take between two weeks to six months from the time that one has become infected to the mollusks.

Treatment

For the most part, mollusks cause no trouble. A mollusc usually disappears without treatment in a couple of months, but in some children it may remain for up to a year.

Should the child stay at home?

No, the child can attend preschool, family daycare or school as usual and participate in activities such as sports, gymnastics and swimming. You don’t need to do anything special to avoid infection as it is not dangerous.

Mouth ulcer – Herpes around the mouth

Mouth ulcers are often caused by the herpes simplex virus. It infects easily and is very common. The infection spreads when the skin or mucous membranes come into direct contact with saliva or with the fluid in a herpes bladder. Herpes is infected mainly with pussies.

The first time the child gets herpes infections for several weeks.

The virus then remains in the body and can be activated again, for example in connection with another infection or by stress. Children often get herpes when, for example, they have a cold. If the baby gets herpes blisters again, they are the most contagious first day. When, after a few days, the blisters start to dry in and a crust has formed, there is less risk of infection.

Symptoms

The first time the baby gets herpes, it is common for the gums to become swollen, red and that it can easily start bleeding.

It also usually forms blisters on the tongue and on the lips. They usually hurt. The child may have difficulty eating and drinking due to the pain in the mouth. Children can also have a fever, sometimes for over a week.

If the child gets herpes again, they get fluid-filled blisters that hurt. Then, most of all, it usually forms blisters on the lips. After a few days, a crust is formed and the blisters disappear in a week.

About half of all children who become infected receive no symptoms.

So long does it take from infection until the child is sick

It usually takes between a couple of days and a couple of weeks from the child to become infected until they get the first symptoms.

Treatment

The infection goes away by itself. There are medicines for the virus that the child can receive in special cases. Read about when you may need to seek care and what you can do for yourself.

Should the child stay at home?

The child does not need to be home for the sake of the infection. What determines is how the child is feeling.

Measles

Measles is a highly contagious viral disease. Most children in Sweden are vaccinated against the disease because it is part of the general vaccination program. Children who are not vaccinated may become infected when traveling to countries where the disease is more common.

The infection spreads when someone who is sick coughs or sneezes. The infection is also spread through the air at a distance. Therefore, you should not seek care at a reception without having called before.

Once you have had the disease you cannot get it again.

Symptoms

It usually starts with a high fever, dry cough and irritated or photosensitive eyes. After a few days, rashes occur, usually in the forehead and behind the ears. They then spread to the rest of the body. The rashes are first light red and then darken and flow together. They are easier to see on light skin than on dark skin. Often the child is hungry, tired and unable to play.

So long does it take from infection until the child is sick

It takes between nine and fourteen days from the time the child is infected until they become ill.

Treatment

There is no treatment for measles, but the symptoms can be relieved by resting in a cool and dark room, among other things.

Because it is so contagious, you should not go to the hospital immediately if you suspect that your child has measles. Call inside. Read about when you should seek care and how you can relieve the hassle.

The doctor must be notified of the disease according to the Infection Protection Act.

Should the child stay at home?

Yes, because it is infectious, the child should stay home from childcare and at least as long as they are infected. How the child feels then decides when they can go back. The child should be able to be with him all day and participate in the usual activities.

Mumps

Mumps disease is a very rare and highly contagious viral infection. Most children in Sweden are currently vaccinated against mumps disease because it is part of the general vaccination program.

The virus infects through droplets that spread in the air when someone sneezes or coughs. It is also spread through objects on which the droplets have landed. For example, if the child takes a toy where drops are found and then rubs his eyes, nose or fingers in his mouth. As soon as the drops have dried in, they no longer become infected.

Only half of those infected get symptoms.

Once you have had the disease you cannot get it again.

Symptoms

If the child has symptoms, they may first get headaches, fever, feel ill and get hurt when they chew. After a few days the baby usually becomes swollen and sore in the back of the lower jaw, in front of the ear.

So long does it take from infection until the child is sick

It usually takes two to three weeks from the baby to become ill. But it can vary between 12 to 25 days.

Treatment

You should contact the healthcare provider if you suspect the child has mumps. Read more about when to seek care. The doctor must report the disease according to the Infection Protection Act.

The infection goes away by itself after a week of rest. If your child is very tired from high fever and is in pain, you can give non-prescription drugs with acetaminophen. Read about treatment here, be sure to follow instructions and advice regarding medicines for children.

Should the child stay at home?

Yes, because it is infectious, the child should stay home from childcare and at least as long as they are infected. How the child feels then decides when they can go back. The child should be able to be in a group of children all day and participate in the usual activities.

RS virus

Infections with RS virus are common in both children and adults, especially during the winter months. They are spread, for example, through direct contact, for example through the hands and when hugging. It is also spread through toys that sick children have had in the mouth or taken in. It also infects with drops in the air that spread with cough and sneezing. It spreads if someone sneezes or coughs on the child and partly if the infection falls on surfaces or objects that the child takes.

An RS infection can be serious for a child younger than one year.

It is important that children who attend childcare and have younger siblings always wash their hands when they return home. This is especially important if siblings are younger than two months.

Symptoms

Children who are between one and about six years of age tend to have symptoms like a common cold. Sometimes the eyes become irritated and red. If the infection becomes more severe, the baby may get more strained cough, harder to breathe and tough mucus in the nose and trachea.
They often find it difficult to cope with eating because the hard breathing with stuffy nose takes a lot of power.

Children up to one year can sometimes get breathing breaks.

So long does it take from infection until the child is sick

It takes between three to five days from the time the child is infected until they become ill.

Treatment

RS infection goes away by itself, but sometimes the child needs to be taken to hospital. Children up to one year who have respiratory problems need special treatment. Read about when you need to seek care and what treatment is needed.

Should the child stay at home?

Children do not need to be home for the sake of infection. What determines is how the child is feeling. If the child has childcare or goes to school, they should be able to be in a children’s group all day and participate in the usual activities.

Ringworm

Ringworm is caused by a fungus that causes the baby to get rashes on the skin or scalp.

Ringworm infects from pets and from person to person.

The disease is uncommon, but sometimes epidemics can occur in, for example, preschools.

Symptoms

The child gets round or oval rashes. The rashes are round or oval and several millimeters to several centimeters in size. The surface is often scaly or pebbly rich. When the rash gets bigger, they can start healing in the middle and then get their typical ring shape. The rash can itch but sometimes the child has no problems. On light skin, the rash is red, on dark skin the red is usually not visible.

It takes so long from infection until the child has a rash

It takes from a few days up to two weeks from the time the baby is infected until the rash appears.

Treatment

Ringworm is treated with fungicides. If you suspect that your child has ringworm, contact a health care center because it is contagious.

Should the child stay at home?

The risk of infection ceases quickly after the child has started treatment. Children who have started treatment can therefore attend preschool or school, and participate in activities such as sports, gymnastics and swimming.

Rubella

Red dogs are a contagious viral disease that is very uncommon in Sweden. Most children are now vaccinated against Red dogs, as they are part of the general vaccination program. Children who are not vaccinated can become infected, for example in connection with a trip to countries where the disease is more common.

Red dogs become infected, for example, when someone who is sick coughs or sneezes so that droplets are spread in the air.

Once you have had the disease you do not get it again.

Symptoms

It is common for the baby to get sniffy and swollen lymph nodes, especially in the neck. They usually do not feel or feel very ill.

After a few days, brownish or bluish rashes usually spread from the face down to the arms and legs. The child may also have fever and joint pain.

So long does it take from infection until the child is sick

It takes between two to three weeks from the time the child is infected until they become ill.

Treatment

Red dog walks by itself. The child may need to take it a bit calm, as in a common cold. You should contact the healthcare provider if you suspect the child has red dogs. Read about when to seek care. The doctor must report the disease according to the Infection Protection Act.

Should the child stay at home?

Yes. The child’s condition determines how long the child should be at home. If the child has childcare or goes to school, it should be possible to be in a group of children all day and participate in the usual activities.

Scarlet fever

Scarlet fever is a very contagious disease in children caused by streptococcus bacteria. 

Scarlet fever is the same disease as when you get throat flux caused by streptococcus bacteria.

Streptococci are spread via direct contact, for example via the hands or via hugs and kisses. It also infects through contact with objects that someone who is sick has touched, such as toys or towels.

It is contagious from any day before the child becomes ill and several weeks afterwards, if the child does not receive treatment. The child does not usually become infected after two days of antibiotic treatment.

Children can carry the bacteria and be contagious without becoming ill themselves.

Symptoms

It is common to have fever, sore throat, red dot rashes over the body and red tongue. At the end of the second week of illness, the baby’s skin usually starts to peel.

If the child gets scarlet fever again, they do not get any rash.

So long does it take from infection until the child is sick

They take between two to four days from the time the child is infected until they become ill.

Treatment

Children with scarlet fever are usually treated with antibiotics for ten days. Seek care if you suspect your child has scarlet fever.

Should the child stay at home?

Yes. Children need to be treated with antibiotics for at least two days before they can return to child care or school. When the child goes back, they should be so nervous that they can be in a group of children all day and participate in the usual activities.

Scabies

Scabies is a small spider-like animal, a mite, which enters the skin and burrows passageways where they lay their eggs. 

Scabies is spread through close and slightly longer body contact. For example, scabies can spread by sleeping in the same bed or sleeping close together. It is uncommon for scabies to spread in preschool or school.

The child, meanwhile, gets infected from them until it becomes infected.

Symptoms

The child gets a rash that itches a lot. It usually itches most at night. It can itch anywhere on the body except on the head. It can be difficult to detect the scabies. In children, they may be the easiest to see on their feet.

Children can itch so much that they get tear marks, for example around the navel or at the groin.

So long does it take from infection until the child is sick

It takes between four to six weeks from the time the baby is infected until it begins to itch.

Treatment

Seek care if you suspect your child has had a scab.

If the child has scabies, they and everyone else who lives with them or has had close contact with treatment with a drug. The cabinet disappears immediately from treatment, but itching may remain for one to several weeks afterwards. 

Should the child stay at home?

Yes, children should be at home for the day of treatment. You need to tell the staff in the childcare or school, as other children and adults may also need to be examined.

Pinworms

Springworm is a parasite in the gut. It is most common in children. Spring worms are naturally found in our environment, and are often found in dust and textiles. It is spread by the children receiving the eggs, including through fingers, toys, lingerie and bedding.

The adult female lays eggs just outside the rectum where it hatches. The mask can sometimes be seen there or in the poop, like a white centimeter-long sewing thread.

The eggs can live at least a couple of weeks outside the human body. Children are often infected again by the eggs of their own worms if they put their fingers in their mouth after previously scratching their tails.

Symptoms

Usually it scratches the tail a lot, especially in the evening and night. Children can also wear a running mask without itching or other problems.

So long does it take from infection until the child is sick

It takes between three to seven weeks from the time the baby is infected until it begins to itch or it is possible to see worms.

Treatment

If the child has a mask that can be seen, you can buy a prescription drug at a pharmacy. It is usually good that everyone in the family is treated. Contact the healthcare provider if you suspect a running mask without it having been seen, if the inconvenience does not go over, or if the inconvenience comes back. It is important to be careful to wash and keep clean during the treatment.

Should the child stay at home?

A child with a running mask does not have to be home from pre-school or school, whether the child has been given medication or not. But many municipalities have their own routines and guidelines for what applies to their preschools and schools.

Pig Cups – impetigo

Swine, or impetigo, is a contagious bacterial infection of the skin. It infects as long as the wounds are moist. It spreads through direct contact, skin to skin. 

Symptoms

When children get swine, it is most common that they get yellowish sore rashes around the nose and mouth. The rash can also come on the fingers, arms, upper body and legs. Often new blisters or skin eruptions are formed right next to or elsewhere on the body. The rash can itch and sting, but children usually do not feel particularly ill.

The child is infected as long as the wounds are moist.

So long does it take from infection until the child is sick

It takes between two to three days from the time the child is infected until they have a rash.

Treatment

If the child does not have a fever and if the rash sits on a well-defined skin area, you can treat the rash yourself. Read about how you treat and if you need to seek care.

Should the child stay at home?

Children who attend preschool or family day care should be at home until the wounds are completely dry. Children who attend school and understand that it is important to be careful about washing their hands can be at school. However, they should not be involved in activities such as sports, swimming or cooking.

Roseola

Three-day fever is a viral disease that almost all children under two years have had. The virus spreads with drops in the air when someone sneezes or coughs. 

Once you have had the disease you do not get it again.

Three-day fever is a so-called virus rash.

Symptoms

The child first gets a high fever which comes quickly and disappears after about three to five days. Some may cough and sniff. Most of them are quite nice.

When the fever goes down, the child often gets light red rash on the stomach which then spreads on the body. The rash can be more difficult to see on dark skin than on light skin. The rash does not itch and disappears in a few days, sometimes faster.

Some children never get any rash.

So long does it take from infection until the child is sick

It usually takes five to ten days from the time the baby is infected until they get a fever.

Treatment

The disease goes away by itself.

Should the child stay at home?

The child does not need to be home for the sake of the infection. They can go back to child care or school after being fever-free for at least a day. When the child goes back, they should be so nervous that they can be in a children’s group all day and participate in the usual activities.

Tuberculosis – tbc

Tuberculosis, also called TB, is a disease that is not so common in Sweden. 

Adults and children older than about 12 years usually get tuberculosis in their lungs. It is more common with TB in other body parts in younger children.

It is only when there are bacteria in the lungs that TB can infect, by coughing the sick person. Only some people with tuberculosis in the lungs have bacteria in the cough.

Most people who become infected do not get sick, nor can they become infected. In order for you to become infected, repeated and close contact with a person who is infected is usually required.

When infecting a preschool, it is always an adult who is contagious.

Children can get vaccines against TB. It is recommended if you are an adult and have immigrated to Sweden from a country where TB is prevalent.

Symptoms

Tuberculosis can cause infection in several places in the body. Children younger than three to four years develop lighter TB after being infected and may also have more serious forms of the disease.

So long does it take from infection until the child is sick

Children can get sick quickly in TB after they are infected. It can also take up to two years before they get sick, but it is unusual.

Treatment

Tuberculosis is treated with several different medicines at the same time. Children who have been infected but have not become ill are treated preventively with antibiotics.

If you suspect that the child has been infected with TB, or if the child is younger than five years and has been exposed to TB infection, contact the health care provider.

Doctors must report the disease according to the Infection Protection Act.

Should the child stay at home?

Infected children are not contagious themselves and do not need to be home if they do not have symptoms of the disease.

Chicken-pox

Chickenpox is a common disease that most people get once in a lifetime, usually before about the age of 12. Chickenpox is caused by a virus that is very contagious. In addition to spreading when someone coughs or sneezes, it also spreads in the air. It therefore infects from a distance.

Chickenpox infects most from a few days before the rash appears until about five days after they start to appear. Therefore, it is difficult to avoid passing on the infection. It can be contagious that all chickenpox have dried up and become sores.

If you have had chickenpox once, you can’t get it again. But the virus stays in the body throughout life and can be activated again, causing the disease to develop shingles.

Symptoms

The first symptoms of chickenpox are usually that the child gets a fever, headache and is tired. After a few days, red rashes are formed, usually on the upper body. They usually spread. It is possible to get a rash everywhere on the body. The rash is more visible on light skin than on dark skin. After a day the rash becomes blisters with clear transparent liquid. If the baby has dark skin, the rash can be difficult to see before the blisters arrive.

So long does it take from infection until the child is sick

It takes between ten to twenty days from the time the child is infected until the disease breaks out.

Treatment

Children usually get completely healthy about a week after the symptoms show up.

Sometimes you may need to seek care for the child. Read about when it is relevant.

Usually you do not need to seek care, but can treat chickenpox at home. To relieve the itching, you can try to cool the skin. If it does not help, the child can get prescription drugs prescribed by a doctor or nurse at a child care center. 

Should the child stay at home?

The child can go back to preschool or school when they are fever-free and feel good, and can be in a children’s group all day and participate in the usual activities. Children usually get healthy about a week after the symptoms show up.

When chickenpox is detected, for example at a preschool, the infection has often already spread. Therefore, it is difficult to stop the infection by keeping the baby at home.

Notify preschool or school if your child has chickenpox, as more may have been infected.

Warts

It is common for children to have warts on their hands and feet. Warts are caused by viruses and infect either skin to skin or through damp towels or wet floors in showers and changing rooms. 

Symptoms

Foot warts are slightly raised, have a hard edge and are a little softer in the middle. Sometimes you can see small black dots in the wart. Hand warts are slightly more outstanding than foot warts and can look like very small cauliflower heads.

It takes so long from infection until the child has received warts

It takes several months from the time the baby is infected until the wart is visible.

Treatment

Warts eventually disappear by themselves. Warts that cause discomfort can be treated in different ways, primarily with antacids. There are different age limits for different means. Ask your pharmacist if you are not sure what to choose. 

Since warts easily infect, it is good not to use each other’s towels and shoes.

Read about when you may need to seek care.

Should the child stay at home?

No, children who have childcare or go to school need not stay home.

Ophthalmia

When children get an eye infection, they have been infected by bacteria or viruses that are often found in the child’s nose and throat.

It infects through the hands and through the droplets that spread in the air when children cough or sneeze. The infection spreads, for example, when the child rubs his eyes and then puts on toys or other children.

An eye inflammation can also be due to an allergic reaction or the child has damaged or suffered eye rash.

Symptoms

Often, the white eyes become red and irritated. The eye usually looks swollen, and it can feel like it is rubbing in the eye. It also usually drains a sticky liquid, so called, from the eye. The liquid causes the eyes to stick together, especially in the morning. For the most part, both eyes are inflamed.

It takes so long from infection until the child has an eye infection

Since eye inflammation can have different causes, it can vary how long it takes. If the inflammation is due to bacteria it usually takes a few days.

Treatment

Most eye infections go away by themselves within a week. Here’s how to take care of the eye yourself.

If, after a week, there is still sticky fluid in the eye, the child may need treatment with antibiotics. But for the most part it is usually not needed.

Should the child stay at home?

Children who have red and slightly messy eyes in the morning, but not for the rest of the day, do not need to be home from child care if they feel well otherwise.

But if the baby’s eye sticks together and you have to wipe each of the eyes several times a day, the child has severe eye inflammation. Even if the child is feeling well otherwise, they should then be home from child care. It is needed partly because it is contagious and partly because the child’s eye must be washed several times a day. The child can go back when the severe inflammation has healed and the eye is no longer permanent.

Children who attend school do not have the same close contact, but in case of a severe eye infection they may still need to be at home if the eyes are irritated and need to be looked after.

Otitis

Ear inflammation is an infection of the middle ear when it is formed. It is very common in children and is usually caused by bacteria. 

Ear inflammation often comes in conjunction with a cold. The cold virus makes it harder for the mucous membranes in the nose and ears to defend against bacteria.

Ear inflammation does not infect, but the bacteria that cause inflammation in the middle ear can be contagious, as can the cold.

Ear pain can have other causes. Read more here.

Symptoms

Ear inflammation usually starts with the child suddenly getting a pain in the ear. Often the child already has a fever and a cold. Children who are up to about a year usually get very sore in the ear. Older children may have more general symptoms such as poor appetite, difficulty sleeping and general irritation.

Sometimes the eardrum bursts. It is not dangerous but it can hurt. Then it flows out into the ear canal and out through the ear. Before the eardrum breaks, it usually hurts a lot, but it hurts less when the eardrum has burst.

Treatment

Children younger than one year and older than twelve years are usually treated with antibiotics. Children between one and twelve years are treated with antibiotics if they have inflammation of both ears, high fever, severe ear pain or any other disease. Read more about when to seek care and when your child needs antibiotics.

Should the child stay at home?

Inflammation of the ear does not transmit from person to person. If the child has childcare or goes to school, they can go back there after not having a fever for 24 hours. The child should be so keen that they can participate in the usual activities for a whole day.

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