Common Infant and Newborn Problems

Baby acne

Overview

Baby acne is acne that develops on a newborn’s skin. Baby acne can occur anywhere on the face, but usually appears on the cheeks, nose and forehead. Baby acne is common — and temporary. There’s little you can do to prevent baby acne. Baby acne usually clears up on its own, without scarring.

Symptoms

Baby acne is usually characterized by small red or white bumps on a baby’s cheeks, nose and forehead. It often develops within the first two to four weeks after birth.

Many babies also develop tiny white bumps on the nose, chin or cheeks. These are known as milia.

When to see a doctor

Consult your baby’s doctor if you’re concerned about any aspect of your baby’s complexion. Baby acne usually clears up within three to four months.

Causes

It’s not clear exactly what causes baby acne.


What is colic?

Colic is when a healthy baby cries or fusses frequently for a prolonged period of time. If your baby regularly cries for more than 3 hours a day, he or she may have colic. Colic can start a few weeks after birth. It is generally worst between 4 and 6 weeks of age. Babies usually grow out of colic by the time they are 3 to 4 months old.

Colic doesn’t seem to happen for a clear reason. Sometimes nothing you do relieves the baby’s crying. This can be very frustrating for parents. Managing colic can add stress to already tired or stressed new parents.

Symptoms of colic

It is normal for babies to fuss and cry. Babies who have colic cry more than most babies. But they are otherwise healthy. Colic is defined as crying for more than 3 hours a day at least 3 days per week for more than 3 weeks. Other features of colic can include:

  • Crying for no obvious reason (for example, they aren’t hungry or need a diaper change).
  • Crying around the same time(s) each day. Colicky babies often get fussy toward the end of the day. But it can happen at any time.
  • Clenching their fists when crying or curling up their legs.
  • Crying like they’re in pain.
  • Turning bright red when crying.

When your baby cries, they can swallow air. This may give your baby gas. It can make their tummy look swollen or feel tight. They might show some relief in symptoms after passing gas or having a bowel movement (pooping).

What causes colic?

Doctors aren’t sure what causes colic. Researchers have looked into many possible reasons for colic. Some of the contributing factors could include:

  • Pain or discomfort from gas or indigestion.
  • A digestive system that isn’t fully developed.
  • Overfeeding or underfeeding.
  • Sensitivity to formula or breast milk.
  • Overstimulation.
  • Early form of childhood migraine headache.
  • Emotional reaction to fear, frustration, or excitement.

How is colic diagnosed?

Your baby’s doctor can diagnose colic. He or she will do a physical exam and review their history and symptoms. The doctor might perform some tests to rule out other possible problems.

Can colic be prevented or avoided?

You cannot prevent or avoid your baby from being colicky.

Colic treatment

If your baby has colic, there are things you can do to try to avoid possible triggers. There are also things you can try to soothe them and reduce crying.

Feeding your baby

If you are breastfeeding your baby, keep track of what you eat and drink. Everything you consume gets passed to your baby and can affect them. Avoid caffeine and chocolate, which act as stimulants. Avoid dairy products and nuts, which your baby may be allergic to. Ask your doctor if any medicines you’re taking could be a problem.

If you are feeding your baby formula, you might try a different brand. Babies can be sensitive to certain proteins in formula. Try feeding your baby less food more often. Avoid feeding your baby too much or too quickly. One bottle feeding should last about 20 minutes. If your baby eats faster, try using a nipple with a smaller hole. This will slow down their feeding. You can try warming the formula to body temperature. Or try feeding your baby in an upright position.

Holding your baby

Babies who have colic respond to different ways of being held or rocked. You can try:

  • Holding your baby across your arm or lap while you massage their back.
  • Holding your baby upright, if they have gas.
  • Holding your baby in the evening.
  • Holding your baby while walking.
  • Rocking your baby in your arms or using an infant swing.

Comforting your baby

Babies also respond differently to movements and stimuli. Other things that can help soothe your baby include:

  • Providing extra skin-to-skin contact.
  • Swaddling your baby.
  • Singing to your baby.
  • Giving your baby a warm (not hot) bath or putting a warm towel on their stomach.
  • Massaging your baby (ask your doctor for guidelines).
  • Providing white noise, such as a fan, vacuum cleaner, washing machine, hair dryer, or dishwasher.
  • Giving your baby a pacifier.
  • Going for a walk with your baby in their stroller.
  • Going for a drive with your baby in their car seat.
  • Giving your baby simethicone drops. This over-the-counter medicine can help relieve gas.

Living with colic

Colic doesn’t cause any short-term or long-term problems for your baby. But colic can be difficult for parents. It can be hard to care for babies who don’t stop crying. You may feel overwhelmed or frustrated. If you are feeling this way, it is important to ask for help. Ask someone close to you to help watch your baby. Never shake or harm your child. Shaking a baby can cause serious brain damage and even death. If you feel like you might shake or harm your baby, get help right away.

The following are things to keep in mind about colic.

  • You didn’t cause the colic, so try not to feel guilty.
  • Colic will go away. Most babies outgrow it by the time they are 3 to 4 months old.
  • Just because your baby has colic doesn’t mean they are unhealthy.
  • There are many ways to soothe your baby.
  • Giving your baby extra attention, such as holding them for extended periods, won’t spoil them.

Contact your baby’s doctor if:

  • Your baby’s crying is mixed with a fever, vomiting, loose or bloody stools, or decreased movement.
  • Your baby’s crying or behavior changes all of a sudden.

Questions to ask your doctor

  • How long does colic last?
  • What is the best way to feed my baby?
  • Should I hold my baby upright for a certain amount of time after they eat?
  • Is there a good position to hold my baby in to make them feel better?
  • What can I do to help myself from getting angry or frustrated when my baby cries?

Diaper Rash

What Is Diaper Rash?

Diaper rash is a common condition that can make a baby’s skin sore, red, scaly, and tender. Most cases will clear up with simple changes in diapering.

What Causes Diaper Rash?

Usually, diaper rash is the result of an irritation, infection, or allergy.

  • Irritation. A baby’s skin can get irritated when a diaper is left on for too long and poop (or the diaper itself) rubs against the skin repeatedly.
  • Infection. Urine (pee) changes the skin’s pH levels, and that lets bacteria and fungi grow more easily. The substances that stop diapers from leaking also prevent air circulation, creating a warm, moist environment where bacteria and fungi can thrive, causing a rash.
  • Allergies. Babies with sensitive skin also can develop rashes. Some types of detergent, soaps, diapers (or dyes from diapers), or baby wipes can affect sensitive skin, causing a rash.

Also, starting new foods can change the content and frequency of a baby’s poop, which can sometimes lead to a diaper rash. And diarrhea can make an existing case of diaper rash worse.

Diaper rash that lasts for more than a few days, even with changes to the diapering routine, might be caused by a yeast called Candida albicans. This rash is usually red, slightly raised, and has small red dots spreading beyond the main part of the rash. It often starts in the deep creases of skin and can spread to skin on the front and back of the baby. Antibiotics given to a baby or a breastfeeding mom can cause this, as they kill off the “good” bacteria that keep Candida from growing.

How Is Diaper Rash Treated?

To help clear up diaper rash, check your baby’s diaper often and change it as soon as it’s wet or soiled. Gently clean the diaper area with soap and water and pat dry. Creams and ointments containing zinc oxide or petroleum help to soothe skin and protect it from moisture. They should be smeared on thickly (like cake icing) at each diaper change.

Some experts suggest letting your baby go without diapers for several hours each day to give irritated skin a chance to dry and “breathe.” This is easiest if you place your baby in a crib with waterproof sheets or on a large towel on the floor.

Diaper rash usually goes away within 2 to 3 days with home care, although it can last longer.

How Can I Prevent Diaper Rash?

To prevent diaper rash, keep your baby’s skin as dry and clean as possible and change diapers often so that poop and pee don’t irritate the skin.

Try these tips:

  • Change your baby’s soiled or wet diapers as soon as possible and clean the area well.
  • Occasionally soak your baby’s bottom between diaper changes with warm water. You can gently scoop the water over your baby’s bottom with your hand or squeeze it from a plastic bottle.
  • Let your baby’s skin dry completely before you put on another diaper.
  • Pat the skin gently with a soft cloth when drying it — rubbing can irritate skin.
  • Put the diaper on loosely to prevent chafing.
  • Change diapers often — ideally every 2 hours or so — and after every poop.

Applying diaper cream or ointment with each diaper change can help some babies with sensitive skin, but not all babies need this.

If you use cloth diapers, check the manufacturer’s directions on how to best clean them. Only use detergents in the amount recommended, and run an extra rinse cycle after washing to remove traces of soap or detergent that can irritate your baby’s skin. Avoid using fabric softeners and dryer sheets — even these can irritate skin.

Some babies get a rash after switching to a new type of diaper. While experts don’t recommend any particular brand, if your child is sensitive, look for diapers free of dyes or fragrances. Some babies are sensitive to baby wipes — water and a washcloth work just as well and may be a gentler option.

When Should I Call the Doctor?

If the rash doesn’t go away, gets worse, or if sores appear on your baby’s skin, talk to your doctor. Also get medical care if your baby has a fever, pus is draining from the rash, or if your child is fussier than usual.

Depending on what type of rash your baby has, the doctor may choose to use an antifungal cream or an antibiotic cream, or may recommend other changes to your diapering routine. Sometimes, if those changes don’t help a rash caused by an allergic reaction, the doctor may prescribe a mild steroid cream for a few days until the rash goes away.


Ear Infection

Overview

What is an ear infection?

An ear infection, also called a middle ear infection, is one of the most common conditions among children. They shouldn’t be ignored. Untreated ear infections can lead to unnecessary pain and permanent hearing loss for your child. An ear infection occurs in the middle ear and is caused by a bacterial or viral infection. It creates pressure in the small space between the eardrum and the back of the throat called the Eustachian tube. Smaller Eustachian tubes are more sensitive to pressure, which causes the ear pain. A child’s adenoids (the little bits of tissue that hang above the tonsils at the back of the throat) can block the opening of Eustachian tubes because they are larger in young children.

Eustachian tubes do not work properly when filled with drainage from the nose or mucous from allergies, colds, bacteria, or viruses because the drainage presses on the eardrum, which is what causes the pain. A chronic ear infection can last for 6 weeks or more, but most go away on their own after 3 days. Children who are routinely exposed to illness from other kids (especially during the winter months), or second-hand smoke are more likely to get ear infections, as does bottle-feeding, because your baby is lying down while eating. Some ear pain is due to teething in babies, a buildup of earwax, or a foreign object your child may have put in their ears. When the pressure increases, it can cause your child’s eardrum to rupture or pop, leaving a hole in the ear. The initial pop hurts, but actually relieves the pressure and pain.

Symptoms

Symptoms of ear infections

Intense pain in your child’s affected ear is usually the first sign of an ear infection. Young children can tell you that their ear hurts, but babies may only cry. Your child may repeatedly pulls on the ear that hurts. The pain is usually worse at night and when your child is chewing, sucking a bottle, or lying down because that’s when the pressure is at its greatest. Other symptoms include a runny nose, cough, fever, vomiting, or dizziness, and hearing loss.

Chronic, frequent ear infections can cause permanent hearing loss. You might suspect your child has hearing loss if you have to talk louder to your child, your child turns up the volume of the TV or music, is not responding to softer sounds or is suddenly less attentive at school.

Causes

What causes ear infections?

Ear infections happen in the middle ear. They are caused by a bacterial or viral infection. The infection creates pressure in the small space between the eardrum and the back of the throat. This area is called the Eustachian tube. These tubes do not work properly when filled with drainage from the nose or mucous from allergies, colds, bacteria, or viruses.

Diagnosis

How are ear infections diagnosed?

Your doctor will be able to check for an ear infection by using a small scope with a light to look into your child’s ear. The infection is not visible without that tool, called an otoscope. Your doctor will know if the eardrum is infected if it looks red and he or she sees fluid inside the ear, the eardrum ruptured, leaving a hole that is visible to your doctor, or if your child has related symptoms, such as a runny nose, cough, fever, vomiting, and dizziness.

Prevention

Can ear infections be prevented or avoided?

Although an ear infection is not contagious, the bacteria or virus that causes it is often passed from person to person like most germs. It’s important to:

  • Vaccinate your child with a pneumococcal conjugate vaccine to protect against several types of pneumococcal bacteria. This type of bacteria is the most common cause of ear infections. Get your child’s vaccinations on time.
  • Practice routine hand washing and avoid sharing food and drinks, especially if your child is exposed to large groups of kids in day care or school settings.
  • Avoid second-hand smoke.
  • Breastfeed your baby exclusively for the first 6 months and continue breastfeeding for at least 1 year. Place your baby at an angle while feeding.
  • Common allergy and cold medicines do not protect against ear infections.

Treatment

Ear infection treatment

Ear infections usually go away in a few days without the use of medicine and don’t require surgery. Doctors are cautious about prescribing antibiotics for ear infections unless they are chronic and frequent. Research shows that over prescribing antibiotics for ear infections is not effective. Doctors treat the pain and fever of an ear infection with over-the-counter (OTC) pain relievers or eardrops, and wait a few days to see if your child’s infection disappears on its own. They’ll ask you to bring your child in again if there’s no improvement. The doctor may prescribe an antibiotic at that point if it is a bacterial infection.

If your child has chronic and frequent ear infections, signs of hearing loss, or speech delays because of that hearing loss, your doctor might refer you to an ear, nose, and throat (ENT) specialist for ear tube surgery. An ENT surgically inserts tubes inside your child’s middle ear. The tubes relieve the pressure and allow the fluid to drain. Some children naturally have small Eustachian tubes, so this helps correct that problem. As your child’s ears grow and develop, the tubes fall out automatically and the ear infections are no longer a problem. Sometimes, the tubes fall out too soon and have to be replaced. For some children, they never fall out and eventually have to be surgically removed. The surgery is quick and does not require overnight hospitalization.

Your doctor may recommend ear tube surgery in certain instances, such as frequent ear infections, or if your child has Down syndrome, cleft palate or a weakened immune system. Never stick anything in your child’s ear to relieve the pain of an ear infection, to remove the tubes or remove a foreign object. See your child’s doctor to have it removed.

Everyday Life

Living with ear infections

Young children are more likely to get ear infections than are older children or adults. They are one of the most common illnesses among children. If your child suffers from several ear infections each year, you’ll want to look out for symptoms every time he or she has a stuffy nose or congestion. Many times, an ear infection will clear up on its own within a week or two. If you can manage your child’s pain at home, the American Academy of Family Physicians recommends a wait-and-see approach for 48 hours before seeing a doctor and asking for an antibiotic. This is unless your child has pain in both ears, is less than 2 years old, and has a fever higher than 102.2°F.

Questions

Questions to ask your doctor

  • How can I keep my child comfortable at night with the pain of an ear infection?
  • Is there drainage with an ear infection?
  • What is the difference between an ear infection and swimmer’s ear?
  • Is my child a candidate for ear tubes?
  • What are the risks of surgically inserting tubes inside my child’s middle ear? What are the risks of not?
  • Should my child get regular hearing tests if he or she has had ear infections?

First Aid: Diaper Rash

Diaper rash is a common skin condition in babies. Usually, the rash is due to irritation caused by the diaper and moisture, but it can have other causes not related to diapers.

What Are the Signs & Symptoms of Diaper Rash?

Irritant rashes are most common and are caused by skin contact with pee, poop, and sweat.

Signs of diaper rash include:

  • soreness
  • red bumps and larger red areas
  • peeling
  • scaly skin
  • fussiness

Rashes also can be caused by a skin infection due to yeast or bacteria . If the rash is due to an infection, signs may include:

  • red bumps
  • blisters or open sores
  • pus-filled sores
  • fluid seeping from red areas

What to Do

  • Try to keep the skin dry.
  • Whenever possible, increase the amount of time your baby spends without a diaper.
  • With each diaper change, wash your baby’s diaper region gently with warm water. Try to avoid soaps and baby wipes (these can irritate skin).
  • When your baby has diaper rash, use disposable diapers.
  • Use a diaper ointment or paste that contains zinc oxide with each diaper change.

Get Medical Care If:

  • the diaper rash doesn’t get better after several days
  • there are pimples, blisters, or open sores in the diaper area
  • your baby has diarrhea with a fever or looks dehydrated

Oral Thrush

What Is Oral Thrush?

Oral thrush is a very common yeast infection in babies. It causes irritation in and around a baby’s mouth.

What Are the Signs and Symptoms of Oral Thrush?

Oral thrush (also called oral candidiasis) can affect anyone, but is most common in babies younger than 6 months old and in older adults.

A baby with oral thrush might have cracked skin in the corners of the mouth or white patches on the lips, tongue, or inside the cheeks that look a little like cottage cheese but can’t be wiped away.

Some babies may not feed well or are uncomfortable when sucking because their mouth feels sore, but many babies don’t feel any pain or discomfort.

What Causes Oral Thrush?

Oral thrush is caused by the overgrowth of a yeast (a type of fungus) called Candida albicans.

Most people (including infants) naturally have Candida in their mouths and digestive tracts, which is considered normal growth. Usually, a healthy immune system and some “good” bacteria control the amount of this fungus in the body.

But if the immune system is weakened (from an illness or medicines like chemotherapy) or not fully developed (as in babies), Candida in the digestive tract can overgrow and lead to an infection. Candida overgrowth also causes diaper rash and vaginal yeast infections. Babies can have oral thrush and a diaper rash at the same time.

Candida overgrowth also can happen after a baby has been given antibiotics for a bacterial infection because antibiotics can kill off the “good” bacteria that keep the Candida from growing. Oral thrush also can happen after the use of steroid medicines.

How Is Oral Thrush Treated?

See your doctor if you think your baby may have thrush. Some cases go away without medical treatment within a week or two, but the doctor may prescribe an antifungal solution for your baby’s mouth. This medicine is usually applied several times a day by “painting” it on the inside of the mouth and tongue with a sponge applicator.

Depending on your baby’s age, the doctor also might suggest adding yogurt with lactobacilli to your baby’s diet. The lactobacilli are “good” bacteria that can help get rid of the yeast in your child’s mouth.

If your baby keeps getting oral thrush, especially if he or she is older than 9 months old, talk with your doctor because this might be a sign of another health issue.

Can Oral Thrush Be Prevented?

Oral thrush is a common infection in babies, but you can help prevent it:

  • If you formula-feed your baby or use a pacifier, thoroughly clean the nipples and pacifiers in hot water or a dishwasher after each use. That way, if there’s yeast on the bottle nipple or pacifier, your baby won’t be reinfected. Store milk and prepared bottles in the refrigerator to prevent yeast from growing.
  • If you breastfeed and your nipples are red and sore, you might have a yeast infection on your nipples, which you and your baby can pass back and forth. Talk to your doctor, who might recommend using an antifungal ointment on your nipples while your baby is treated with the antifungal solution

Vomiting

Many different things can make kids throw up, including illnesses, motion sickness, stress, and other problems. In most cases, though, vomiting in children is caused by gastroenteritis, an infection of the digestive tract.

Gastroenteritis, often called the “stomach flu,” usually is caused by common viruses that we come into contact with every day. Besides causing vomiting, it also can cause nausea, belly pain, and diarrhea.

Gastroenteritis infections usually don’t last long and are more disruptive than dangerous. But kids (especially infants) who cannot take in enough fluids and also have diarrhea could become dehydrated. This means that their bodies lose nutrients and water, leading to further illness.

It’s important to stay calm — vomiting is frightening to young children (and parents) and exhausting for kids of all ages. Reassuring your child and preventing dehydration are key for a quick recovery.

Giving kids the right fluids at the right time (called “oral rehydration”) is the best way to help prevent dehydration or treat mild fluid loss.

What Is Oral Rehydration?

When fluids are lost through vomiting or diarrhea, it’s important to replace them as soon as possible. The key is drinking small amounts of liquid often to replace water and nutrients that have been lost.

The best liquids for this are oral rehydration solutions — often called oral electrolyte solutions or oral electrolyte maintenance solutions. They have the right balance of fluids and minerals to replace those lost to vomiting and help kids stay hydrated.

Most electrolyte solutions are available at supermarkets or drugstores. If you think your child is at risk for dehydration, call your doctor. He or she might have specific oral rehydration instructions and can advise you on which solution is best for your child.

Note: Over-the-counter medicines to treat nausea, vomiting, and diarrhea are not recommended for babies and children. In some situations, doctors might recommend medicines for nausea or vomiting, but these are available only by prescription.

Rehydration Tips: Babies (Birth to 12 Months)

  • Do not give plain water to an infant unless your doctor tells you to and specifies an amount. Plain water by itself can disrupt the balance of nutrients in your baby’s blood.
  • If your baby is younger than 2 months old and vomits (not just spits up, but vomits what seems like an entire feeding) at ALL feedings, call your doctor right away.

For Breastfed Babies

  • If your infant is exclusively breastfeeding and vomits (not just spits up, but vomits what seems like the entire feeding) more than once, breastfeed for shorter periods of time (about 5 to 10 minutes at a time) every 2 hours. Increase the amount of time your baby feeds as he or she is able to tolerate it.

    If your baby is still vomiting on this schedule, call your doctor. After about 8 hours without vomiting, you can go back to your normal breastfeeding schedule.

For Formula-fed Babies

  • Offer small but frequent amounts — about 2 teaspoons (10 milliliters) — of an unflavored oral electrolyte solution every 15–20 minutes with a spoon or an oral syringe. Check with your doctor about which type of solution is best.
  • A baby over 6 months old may not like the taste of a plain oral electrolyte solution. You can buy flavored solutions, or (only for babies over 6 months) you can add ½ teaspoon (about 3 milliliters) of juice to each feeding of unflavored oral electrolyte solution.
  • If your baby can keep an electrolyte solution down for more than a couple of hours without vomiting, slowly increase the amount you give. For instance, if your little one normally drinks 4 ounces (about 120 milliliters) per feeding, slowly work up to giving this amount of oral electrolyte solution as the day goes on.
  • Sometimes very thirsty babies will try to drink a lot of liquid quickly but can’t tolerate it. Do not give more solution than your baby would normally drink in a sitting — this will overfill an already irritated tummy and likely cause more vomiting.
  • After your baby goes for more than about 8 hours without vomiting, restart formula slowly. Start with small, frequent feedings of half an ounce to 1 ounce, or about 20–30 milliliters. Slowly work up to the normal feeding routine. If your infant already eats solids, it’s OK to start solid feedings in small amounts again. If your baby doesn’t vomit for 24 hours, you can return to your normal feeding routine.

Rehydration Tips: Kids & Teens (Ages 1+)

  • Give clear liquids (avoid milk and milk products) in small amounts every 15 minutes. The amount you give at one time can range from 2 teaspoons (10 milliliters) to 2 tablespoons (30 milliliters or 1 ounce), depending on the age of your child and how much your child can take without vomiting.

    There are many good choices for clear liquids, including:
    • ice chips or sips of water
    • flavored oral electrolyte solutions, or add ½ teaspoon (about 3 milliliters) of fruit juice (like orange, apple, pear, or grape juice) to unflavored oral electrolyte solution
    • frozen oral electrolyte solution popsicles
    • broth
    • gelatin desserts
  • If your child vomits, start over with a smaller amount of fluid (2 teaspoons, or about 10 milliliters) and continue as above. Make sure to avoid straight juices and sodas, both of which could make things worse. Kids may ask for commercial sports drinks, but be careful with these — they have a lot of sugar and could make things worse.
  • After no vomiting for about 8 hours, introduce solid foods slowly. But do not force any foods. Your child will tell you when he or she is hungry. Your child might want bland foods — saltine crackers, toast, mashed potatoes, mild soups — to start out with.
  • If there’s no vomiting for 24 hours, slowly return to your child’s regular diet. There’s no need to leave out milk products unless they seem to be making vomiting or diarrhea worse.

Vomiting due to gastroenteritis is caused by viruses that can spread to others. So keep your child home from school or childcare until there’s been no vomiting for at least 24 hours. And remember that washing hands well and often is the best way to protect your family against many infections.

When Should I Call the Doctor?

If your child refuses fluids or if the vomiting continues after you try the suggested rehydration tips, call your doctor. Also, call for any of the signs of dehydration below.

In babies:

  • few or no tears when crying
  • dry lips
  • fewer than four wet diapers per day in a baby (more than 4–6 hours without a wet diaper in babies under 6 months of age)
  • fussy behavior
  • soft spot on an infant’s head that looks flatter than usual or somewhat sunken
  • appears weak or limp
  • not waking up for feedings

In kids and teens:

  • no peeing for 6–8 hours
  • dry mouth (might look “sticky” inside), cracked lips
  • dry, wrinkled, or doughy skin (especially on the belly and upper arms and legs)
  • inactivity or decreased alertness
  • excessive sleepiness or disorientation
  • deep, rapid breathing
  • fast or weakened pulse
  • sunken eyes

Also contact your doctor if you notice any of the following, which could be a sign of an illness more severe than gastroenteritis:

  • if your infant is under 2 months old and vomiting (not just spitting up)
  • projectile or forceful vomiting in an infant, particularly a baby who’s younger than 3 months old
  • vomiting after your baby has taken an oral electrolyte solution for close to 24 hours
  • vomiting that starts again as soon as you try to resume your child’s normal diet
  • vomiting that starts after a head injury
  • vomiting accompanied by fever (100.4°F/38°C rectally in an infant younger than 6 months old or more than 101–102°F/38.3–38.9°C in an older child)
  • vomiting of bright green or yellow-green fluid, blood, or brownish vomit resembling coffee grounds (which can be a sign of blood mixing with stomach acid)
  • your child’s belly feels hard, bloated, and painful between vomiting episodes
  • very bad stomach pain
  • swelling, redness, or pain in a boy’s scrotum
  • pain with peeing, blood in the pee, or back pain
  • headache or stiff neck

Source: kidhealth

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