Minor illness and knowing if it’s serious

We are entering the flu & bronchiolitis season!

A common childhood winter illness is Bronchiolitis and RSV. It is more common in children under 2. Some children can become poorly with this and be admitted into hospital – there is further information on the signs of this illness and when to seek medical help here:

Bronchiolitis – NHS (www.nhs.uk)

Bronchiolitis and RSV :: Healthier Together (what0-18.nhs.uk)

Please see the following information on Respiratory syncytial virus (RSV) from our NHS colleagues in Doncaster & Bassetlaw

Know the signs and symptoms of RSV – Doncaster and Bassetlaw Teaching Hospitals (dbth.nhs.uk)

Winter illnesses in children:

Colds, coughs and ear infections in children – NHS (www.nhs.uk)

General Information

Chat Health: Health for Under 5s | For healthy, happy early years

Healthier Together is a new website for parents and carers in Oxfordshire, providing information from local healthcare professionals about what might be wrong. Using an easy-to-follow traffic light system, you’ll find clear information on common childhood illnesses, including what signs to look out for, when and where to seek help if required, what you should do to keep your child comfortable and how long your child’s symptoms are likely to last. The website also has a translation tool, a directory of local services to support your family’s health and wellbeing, as well advice on whether your child should go to nursery when they have a virus or infection. Parents can also download the Healthier Together App, using a self-assessment tool, the app guides you to the most appropriate healthcare provider depending on your child’s symptoms and gives the option to contact them directly from the app.

Royal College of Paediatrics and Child Health have parent information sheets for a wide range of childhood illnesses here: Safety netting & parent info sheets :: Healthier Together (what0-18.nhs.uk)

Understanding constipation in babies and toddlers

Understanding constipation in babies and toddlers (bbuk.org.uk)

Nappies and skin care

Are sore bottoms caused by disposable nappies? – Bladder & Bowel UK (bbuk.org.uk)

What to do if your baby is ill

Check out the evidence based best beginnings “baby buddy” app for lots of information about parenting a baby and what to do if you are worried about their health Best Beginnings


Children can get coronavirus (COVID-19), but it’s usually a mild illness and most get better in a few days.

Coronavirus (COVID-19) symptoms in children – NHS (www.nhs.uk)

Institute of Health Visiting: Parenting through COVID

Common childhood illnesses

Breathing difficulties (inc. wheezing)

Wheeze-and-breathing-difficulties: Institute of Health Visiting


Bronchiolitis is a common chest infection that affects babies and children under 2. It’s usually mild and can be treated at home, but it can be serious. See also below under “unsure if your baby is ill” and “breathing difficulties”

Bronchiolitis – NHS (www.nhs.uk)

Chicken Pox

Chickenpox: Institute of Health Visiting


Crying and colic :: Healthier Together (what0-18.nhs.uk)


Constipation in children – NHS (www.nhs.uk)

Cradle cap

Institute of Health Visiting : Managing-cradle-cap

Crying – coping with a crying baby

Scroll down for full information

D & V

Diarrhoea & vomiting: Institute of Health Visiting


Managing-atopic-eczema Institute of Health Visiting


Fever & high temperature: Institute of Health Visiting

A febrile seizure can occur in a young child with a fever or high temperature

Head injuries

Head injury: Institute of Health Visiting

Nappy rash

Nappy rash – NHS (www.nhs.uk)


Rashes :: Healthier Together (what0-18.nhs.uk)


Please see the following information on Respiratory syncytial virus (RSV) from our NHS colleagues in Doncaster & Bassetlaw

Know the signs and symptoms of RSV – Doncaster and Bassetlaw Teaching Hospitals (dbth.nhs.uk)

Serious childhood illness

NHS Is your child seriously ill?: Is your baby or toddler seriously ill? – NHS (www.nhs.uk)

The NHS also have valuable information on spotting signs of serious illness


Meningitis Symptoms in Babies & Toddlers | Meningitis Now



Recognising-Sepsis: Institute of Health Visiting

First aid

First aid – NHS (www.nhs.uk)

Skin to skin contact and how it helps when your baby is unwell: Skin-to-skin contact – Baby Friendly Initiative (unicef.org.uk)

How to get help

NHS 111: NHS 111 online

When to call 999

When to call 999 – NHS (www.nhs.uk)

Looking after a sick child

Looking after a sick child NHS: Looking after a sick child – NHS (www.nhs.uk)

Child first aid: First aid and safety – NHS (www.nhs.uk)

If your baby is crying

Coping with a crying baby: Parents Advice | ICON (iconcope.org)

Help when your baby is crying: Support For Crying And Sleepless Babies | Home | Cry-sis

Soothing your baby


Page last reviewed: 20 October, 2023