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Child sickness and danger signals

New Zealand Child Safety Foundation

Danger signals

  • Cannot be woken
  • Responding less than normal
  • Has glazed eyes and is not focusing on anything
  • Is floppy, drowsy or less alert than usual
  • Has an unusual cry for one hour or more
  • Has a convulsion or fit
  • Has been badly injured
  • There is a bulge in the groin that gets bigger with crying
  • Feels too hot or too cold
  • Has a temperature over 38.3° C
  • Child is much paler than usual
  • Nails are blue
  • Colour does not return to toes or fingers within 3 seconds if squeezed
  • Has rash covering a large part of the body
  • Goes blue or stops breathing
  • Breathes more quickly than normal
  • Is wheezing when breathing out
  • Indrawing of chest is visible with each breath
  • Has vomited 3 times or more after food
  • Has green vomit
  • Has vomiting and diarrhoea together

Child sickness

  • Keep a sick child at home
  • Ensure children always wash hands after toileting
  • Ensure a sick child does not share food with other children
  • Dispose of used tissues immediately
  • Ensure fluid intake increases when unwell
  • Ensure food intake is kept up with easy to digest foods
  • Keep regular checks on breathing and temperature
  • Ensure sick child is kept in bed and warm
  • Ensure medications are given as per instructions

This checklist has been kindly provided by the New Zealand Child Safety Foundation , one of New Zealand’s least known but most valuable charitable foundations. Established in 1985 as the New Zealand Safe Playing Trust to teach safety to pre-school and early primary school pupils, the Child Safety Foundation NZ was renamed in 1993. The Foundation is not funded by the Government and derives it’s funding from donations and fundraising. The foundation, through the generosity of its sponsors and other limited funding provides worthwhile services to support young families.