Why do kids always seem sicker at night? I'm worried...

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Posted 4/4/2013 by KristinL16 in NSBR Board
 

KristinL16
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Posted: 4/4/2013 9:47:56 PM
My 17 month old has had a fever the last two nights (but not during the day). He also has a productive cough and runny nose. This evening when I picked him up from daycare he seemed to be wheezing a little at times so I have him a nebulizer treatment. Now he is sleeping and I am worried about his breathing--it is rapid and wheezy. Seems like every time the kids are sick I get a lot more worried about it at night. Probably because there isn't much to do about it then? I don't know. Anyway, is there anything I can do at home besides keeping an eye on him?


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paigepea
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Posted: 4/4/2013 9:50:38 PM
People are always sicker at night. My dh is a pedi and says even adults get sicker at night - tired from the day, trying to sleep, etc.

What about putting a humidifier in his room or putting him in the bathroom with the shower on.

If he's really weezy and you're worried about his airway you should go in to the ER (I'm in Canada, this is what we would do if there was worry). Doesn't croup always improve on the way to the ER because of the cold air?

Paige.






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Posted: 4/4/2013 9:50:44 PM
I was told by a doctor that fevers in children do spike at night. I cannot remember the reason though. The rapid breathing would concern me. Did he see a doc already?


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StuckOnPeas

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Posted: 4/4/2013 9:52:11 PM
I'd just keep an eye on him.

Kids almost always do get sicker at night. I thought that it was common for the "healthiest" part of the day to be early afternoon, and mornings and nights were worse times.

If you really feel worried, you can always call your pediatrician's nurse's line at night. (Or if you don't have a doctor for him, call your local hospital's pediatric nurse's desk. They will help you decide if his illness is something that can wait until the morning to be seen, or if he needs to come right into the ER, or if it can just be waited out at home).

I hope your little guy feels better soon. I know how terrible it is to watch our little ones be ill.



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KristinL16
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Posted: 4/4/2013 9:53:37 PM
The rapid breathing is what is bothering me the most right now. My oldest son even noticed it.

Does anyone know how many breaths a child that age is supposed to take in a minute?

His activity level and behavior prior to going to sleep was normal. He hasn't been eating as much but still nurses.


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Posted: 4/4/2013 10:00:43 PM
You need to call a nurse and have him assessed.


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Posted: 4/4/2013 10:22:53 PM
What is his respiration rate (over the course of a minute)?

ETA: I can't quite tell from your OP if your DS has a fever right this minute. Fever can cause rapid breathing in children but the audible wheeze with the rapid breathing concerns me. I'd place a call with your on-call pedi just to be cautious. I don't mean to instill fear but when they're little, things can go downhill quickly. Your mama instinct is telling you something. I hope your little guy feels better soon!

KristinL16
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Posted: 4/4/2013 10:34:06 PM
He took 28 breaths in one minute.

ETA-I just looked it up and that doesn't seem fast. Maybe it is just more noticeable if he is breathing harder?


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Posted: 4/4/2013 10:47:26 PM
28 breaths is within the normal range, thankfully. His breathing may be labored and that's what's drawing your attention. Poor guy. A close eye throughout the night may be all he needs for now but I'd still try to call the doctor just to be sure.

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Posted: 4/4/2013 10:52:45 PM
Is it a mild or high fever? I'm a worry wart, so I would probably take him in. Better safe then sorry.


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StuckOnPeas

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Posted: 4/4/2013 11:14:02 PM
I don't want to add to your worry, but two years ago I took my daughter to the doctor to be looked at because she was doing exactly what you describe your DS as doing. To make an epically long story short, her regular doctor sent us straight to the hospital to more thoroughly examine her troublesome breathing.

She was diagnosed with pneumonia, and ended up staying two nights in the hospital.

The scariest thing was that it just came out of nowhere. When we headed to her regular doctor that morning, I expected to get sent home with a prescription to treat whatever was causing the labored breathing. I even told my principal that I'd be back at school by 1:00 to attend a very important IEP meeting that I was coordinating. I ended up calling him back from the hospital to let him know that my plans had just been drastically changed.

I don't mess around with breathing. If either of my kids so much as even hints that they're having issues with their breathing, I load them up and go to the doctor. Better safe than sorry!



freecharlie
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Posted: 4/4/2013 11:22:38 PM
When DS had major breathing issues when he was young, he'd breath 60+ times per minute and it was incredibly scary.

28 isn't that bad, but you can assess other areas as well. Look at his chest and the throat area just above the ribs. Is he contracting? If so, I'd worry more.

In the future, I find a pulse ox to help me assess my kids. It isn't the only tool, but when DS drops below 90 I know it is time to step up our at home treatment and if it doesn't get better to take him in.


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Carey Ayn
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Posted: 4/4/2013 11:57:52 PM
Kristin, I don't mess with breathing issues. My boys had RSV a few times and we ended up in the ER three or four times.

Call the nurse line. CENTRACARE nurses will actually listen to his breathing over the phone. Twice they had him come in. Once we just kept an eye on him.



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Posted: 4/5/2013 12:01:54 AM
I would probably do another nebulizer treatment if it's been 4 to 6 hours since the last one. If he doesn't seem to be breathing easier after, I would seriously consider a trip to the ER especially if he has a fever.


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Posted: 4/5/2013 12:05:04 AM
DS was panting it seemed like with RSV.




Basket1lady
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Posted: 4/5/2013 6:57:15 AM
I hope your little guy is better!

When I was in the ER with DD with croup, the ER doc said that people do get sicker at night because their epinephrine levels drop after dark. I'm not sure if its true science, but that's what he said!


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Posted: 4/5/2013 7:00:17 AM
I was told by my ped that part of the shallow breathing is one way the body tries to bring down the fever.

Hope he's better today!



KristinL16
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Posted: 4/5/2013 7:21:19 AM
Thanks. I haven't taken him in yet but will head to the walk in clinic as soon as he wakes up. He had a fever again during the night. At one point (when he was awake) his respiration rate was 53 a minute but then he fell back asleep and it slowed down again. I think he may have rsv. He had it when he was 5-6 weeks old and was in the hospital. This seems a lot like that. I feel like he is sick all the time. He was just in the hospital a few weeks ago due to dehydration while he had a stomach virus.


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TinaFB
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Posted: 4/5/2013 7:48:53 AM
Poor baby. I hope he gets better quickly and stays that way!


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