Your child starts getting a sore throat and constantly clearing it, slowly stops eating, develops a fever, and sleeps a lot more. All of these are signs of strep throat or a cold but did you know that mono in toddlers is actually something that happens?
Now mononucleosis is not super common in toddlers and most of them tend to get it with such mild symptoms that you won’t even know they have it.
However, sometimes it is more serious here are the symptoms you need to be aware of so that you can have it diagnosed right away before it gets worse.
Mononucleosis In Toddlers
Mono also is known as glandular fever or kissing disease is more common in kids ages 5 to 13, college age, and some adults can also get it if they didn’t have mono as a child.
The Epstein-Barr virus causes it, but some other viruses could cause it as well.
Most commonly spread through saliva from kissing, or by sharing a glass or food utensils.
Little ones can spread it easily because they cough or sneeze and touch their mouths then touch other things.
My four year old came down with a fever and sore throat that wasn’t getting better so we had him tested for strep throat.
The doctor said it was strep throat so we got the antibiotics but after four days with little to no improvement, we got a stronger antibiotic.
The thing with mono is that certain antibiotics can cause a rash which we experienced three days later.
I got on the phone and demanded in a nice way to see the doctor because he was starting to get worse and now had a rash.
We went in and they did blood work (not a fun experience with a little one to say the least), we got the results a few hours later and yes he had mono.
I had no idea that children this young could get mono until now!!
No more antibiotics for this guy, they said it has to run its course.
They won’t tell you things you can do to help because they are natural remedies and doctors don’t always like to talk about those.
I am going to share with you how to identify mono, symptoms of it, complications, and also what you can do to help your little one get better sooner.
Mono Symptoms In Toddlers
Here are the signs and symptoms of mono some of these may not be present in your child but these are what you should look for.
- Fatigue – sleeps more than usual or complains of pain
- A sore throat that doesn’t go away with antibiotics
- Swollen lymph nodes in neck and armpits
- Swollen tonsils
- Skin rash
- Complains of belly pain
- Smelly breath or your child’s room has a strange smell
One of the things about mononucleosis is that it stays dormant in the body for four to six weeks before showing up so it is hard to pinpoint where they got it from.
Mono Complications That Can Occur
Some complications that can happen while your child has mono. Most children recover just fine but sometimes there are complications.
I’m not trying to worry you just let you know these can happen, and if you notice something seek medical attention.
- An enlarged spleen – if your child complains of stomach pain this could be why.
- Red spots or rash – especially if on certain antibiotics, no this is not an allergic reaction.
- Mild anemia – which will go away on its own after a few months.
- White blood cells with abnormal shape – as a result of having mononucleosis.
- Hepatitis – which will go away on its own.
- A ruptured spleen – which can happen if your toddler is to active and running around. Activity should be avoided for 4 weeks.
- Difficulty breathing or Airway obstruction – caused by enlarged tonsils blocking the throat. In some cases, they need to be removed.
- Brain and Spinal cord problems – see your doctor right away if you notice anything like this.
- Heart problems – irregular heart rate which can happen during the first three weeks of mono. This will resolve on its own.
Most toddlers recover without having any of these complications but if you notice anything like these consult your doctor.
If you feel like something isn’t right or the fever doesn’t get better call your doctor right away and get them in to be reevaluated.
Mononucleosis Treatment For Toddlers
A few things you can do to help your toddler heal faster are pretty basic but they work really well to get them to feel better sooner.
- Gargling Saltwater – helps relieve the swelling in the throat and ease the pain.
- Garlic Juice – has antibacterial and antiviral properties. It will keep the virus from replicating. Boil some garlic, strain it, let it cool, and drink.
- Coconut Oil – is an antiviral that can stop viruses from spreading and even help kill them. Great to use in cooking or melted down and drank or taken on a spoon. It is easily absorbed and contains lots of nutrients.
- Lemon Juice – contains lots of vitamin C and will help your child feel better faster. Great for sore throats and inflammation.
- Apple Cider Vinegar – is used to treat many illnesses and disease it also has antiviral and antibacterial properties. Great for stopping viruses from multiplying and spreading.
- Oregano Oil – stops viruses from growing and reproducing so the body can kill them more easily. You can mix a tablespoon with a couple of tablespoons of apple cider vinegar and lemon juice and have your child sip it slowly.
- Zinc – helps keep the virus from replicating pathogens in tissues, organs, and in the blood. It can keep the body from getting inflamed and help in the healing process as well as be used as a preventative measure against viruses.
- Vitamin C – either naturally found in oranges, broccoli, and other food or in a supplement. It helps with cell communication, boosting immunity, and new cell production. A must for recovering from mono.
Final Thoughts On Mono In Toddlers
Though mono in toddlers does not commonly bother them some children may be more susceptible to getting it a little worse.
I personally think it depends on the food they eat if it’s processed food or junk food. Also how strong their immune system is and any underlying conditions that make them more likely to get a more severe case.
That being said don’t freak out if your child does get it just keep them hydrated, use ibuprofen for discomfort, up the vitamin intake, and keep them quiet.
This is the perfect time to cuddle with them, read books or watch movies and do puzzles or quiet games.
If you have any questions or worries always call your doctor and seek advice.