QUESTION: My daughter has been getting sick a lot lately. When I take her to the doctors, though, they say she is fine. Could there be something wrong with her and them not know about it?
DR. LOPEZ’ ADVICE: This is a hard question to answer without more details. The most common illnesses in kids are upper respiratory tract infections. Most kids get sick a lot during the winter months. It’s not uncommon for them to have a cold 6-8 times during the winter months. It seems to parents that they are always sick. There are millions of cold viruses out there and if a young child comes into contact with a new virus which she has no immunity for she will get sick. With each new illness your child builds his/her immune system allowing her/him to get sick less frequently as he/she gets older.
Other contributing factors are the age of your child (we are more cautious with babies) and does he/she have some chronic illness? Has your child traveled outside the US? Is the child in day care? Are the immunizations up to date?
If your child is a healthy child, has all her immunizations up to date, has not traveled outside the US and is presenting with mostly cold symptoms then most likely she is getting exposed to different viruses that she has no immunity to and, therefore, is getting sick. The doctors probably tell you she is fine, it’s viral and you have to let it run its course. This is what is probably going on but since I don’t know your child, my advice is to address all of your concerns with the pediatrician.
Wanda Lopez, M.D.
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