Streptococcus In Children: It Can Become Dangerous If Left Untreated

Different strains of streptococcus bacteria are known in medicine and science. On the one hand, there are various species that occur naturally in and on the human organism. In particular, numerous bacterial cultures are found in the intestinal tract and in the mouth and throat.

However, there are also streptococci, which cause a wide variety of diseases. In some cases, an infection can be very dangerous.

Streptococcus In Children: What Is It Actually?

Streptococcus describes a bacterial strain within the lactic acid bacteria. Some of the bacteria are extremely useful for humans. For example, in terms of intestinal flora. In addition, selected streptococcus species to have an essential function in food production.

For example, they are necessary for the production of sour vegetables, sour milk products, or silage. Streptococci are also used within periodontosis prophylaxis.

Furthermore, they can be used to build up the human intestinal flora, for example after treatment with antibiotics. In addition to these useful species, however, there are also disease-causing streptococci in children and adults.

Streptococci In Children Cause Disease

Infection with Streptococcus bacteria can be the cause of numerous diseases. Among them are various childhood diseases and other clinical pictures, which may cause serious complications if not treated.

Streptococcal angina is particularly well known in this context. In addition, streptococci are possible triggers for the following diseases:

  • Sinusitis.
  • Pneumonia.
  • Various urinary tract infections.
  • Inflammations of the inner lining of the heart.
  • Scarlet fever.
  • Angina.
  • Meningitis.
  • Laryngitis.
  • Middle ear infections.
  • Infections of the connective tissue.
  • Wound roses.
  • Pus lichen.

However, with regard to scarlet fever, it should be mentioned at this point that the bacteria themselves are not the trigger of the disease, but much more the toxins formed by Streptococcus.

Serious Symptoms Of Streptococcal Infection In Children

Depending on the particular clinical picture, streptococcal infections can vary greatly in the variety of symptoms you experience. However, some symptoms are very characteristic of Streptococcus. Thus, there is often fever, chills, severe pain (for example, concerning the throat), swelling, and secretions in purulent form.

Also interesting:
Spreading Pants For Babies: What Do They Do?

It should be borne in mind that streptococcal infections can trigger very serious clinical pictures, such as meningitis, endocarditis, or pneumonia. These are always medical emergencies that require urgent medical attention.

Medical Emergency – See A Doctor Without Fail

To avoid complications, it is imperative to seek medical attention at the first sign of strep throat. If your child suffers from high fever, chills, poor general condition, and an extreme feeling of weakness, a visit to the doctor is necessary to rule out streptococcal disease.

If infections are not treated or are treated too late, sepsis may develop. In this case, the bacteria enter the bloodstream directly in relatively large quantities.

As a result, an infectious-toxic shock develops within a very short time, which in the worst-case ends fatally. A correspondingly dramatic course of the infection primarily affects people with weak immune defenses.

Those at risk are, for example, AIDS patients, diabetes sufferers, and people with heart disease. Children – especially very young children – are also at high risk.

Have Streptococci Diagnosed In Children

If infection with streptococci is suspected, a swab is usually taken as the first-line treatment. This is very effective in the case of angina or scarlet fever, for example. Hand foot disease, which is often mistaken for angina, can also be ruled out in this way.

If a smear test is not possible, it is possible to detect streptococci by taking a blood sample. For this purpose, a blood culture is prepared, which is then cultured in the laboratory. The pathogens can then be detected under the microscope.

Detection Of Antibodies Necessary

It is known that a certain number of Streptococcus bacteria is normal in the human organism. Accordingly, it is difficult to detect pathogens via the blood. In this regard, attention is paid not only to the presence of the bacteria but also to the presence of antibodies.

If antibodies against streptococci are formed in the blood, this is a clear indication of disease-related colonization.

Treating Streptococci In Children

In principle, antibiotics are the first choice for streptococcal infections in children and adults. Penicillin is particularly frequently used for this purpose. However, it should be mentioned that some streptococcal species have developed resistance to penicillin.

Also interesting:
Pain In The Belly Button: These Are The Causes

In this context, it is advisable to establish a bacterial culture. Bacterial cultures can be examined for corresponding resistances. This, in turn, can identify effective drugs that show appropriate efficacy.

No Community Facilities For Streptococcal Infections

In principle, infections with streptococci are considered highly infectious. The risk of infection is extremely high, so that affected children should not visit community facilities such as kindergartens or schools.

To avoid infecting healthy people, the disease should be cured at home. However, as soon as antibiotic therapy has been started, the probability of infection drops significantly within a very short time.

If, on the other hand, no antibiotic therapy is given, those affected remain highly contagious for a period of several weeks.

Treatment Urgently Needed To Avoid Complications

If a streptococcal infection is not treated adequately or not treated at all, there are various risks of complications. Here, not only the complications of the actual disease have to be considered.

Meanwhile, various autoimmune diseases are associated with previous streptococcal infections. It is also discussed whether rheumatic fever is possibly associated with streptococci in children.

For these and the previously mentioned reasons, it is urgent to treat a streptococcal infection medically and to effect a complete cure.

Common Clinical Pictures Triggered By Streptococci In Children

Scarlet Fever Caused By Streptococci In Children

Scarlet fever is an acute childhood disease that primarily affects girls and boys between the ages of four and seven. The incubation period is one to three days.

Characteristic features are fever, chills, a clear inflammation of the throat, possibly vomiting, headache, and the typical scarlet angina. In most cases, a typical rash appears after a few days, leaving the mouth-chin triangle clear.

In this context, there is also talk of butterfly face. Scarlet fever is highly infectious and is treated with antibiotics. There is no vaccination against scarlet fever.

Middle Ear Infections Caused By Streptococci In Children

Typical symptoms of a middle ear infection are ear pain. In addition, a throbbing in the ear, hearing disorders, and dizziness may occur.

In some cases, there are secretory discharges from the ear, which are not infrequently also purulent. In some children, fever also sets in. Triggers of otitis media include viruses and bacteria, such as streptococci.

Also interesting:
What's Behind The RS Virus And How Dangerous It Really Is

It is not uncommon for otitis media – as middle ear infection is also called – to develop during an upper respiratory tract infection. In this context, the ear is not sufficiently ventilated. Treatment is possible, for example, with eardrops containing antibiotics.

Angina Caused By Streptococci In Children

Streptococcal angina is an inflammation of the mucous membranes of the throat. The clinical picture describes an acute onset of the disease. There is marked discomfort and pain in the throat and when swallowing. The fever can easily rise to over 39 degrees.

The general condition of the affected person is markedly depressed. Chills, headaches, vomiting, and nausea are other typical signs of streptococcal angina. Recovery requires as much rest as possible. Throat compresses are effective, as is gargling with chamomile rinses. Medically, streptococcal angina is treated with antibiotics.

Meningitis Caused By Streptococci In Children

In connection with streptococci, meningitis is considered a particularly dangerous disease. In medicine, it is also called meningitis. Meningitis can be caused by bacteria such as streptococci, but also by viruses, parasites, and non-infectious causes.

As the inflammation progresses, the patient experiences headaches, neck stiffness, fever, nausea, a decrease in consciousness, confusion, and a marked hypersensitivity to light and sound.

Meningitis can spread to the brain and spinal cord, causing life-threatening conditions. If meningitis is suspected, a physician must be consulted as soon as possible.

Streptococci During Pregnancy Dangerous For Your Child

For the baby, maternal infection with streptococcus can be life-threatening. There is a risk of severe meningitis or sepsis. In addition, during birth – if the mother is infected – the bacteria enter the baby’s bloodstream directly.

Since newborns do not yet have sufficient defenses, their bodies are not yet able to fight the infection. As a result, the bacteria spread very quickly to the various organs, so that almost the entire body is affected by the infection.

Pregnant women can be tested for streptococci between the 35th and 37th week of pregnancy. If an infection is detectable, direct treatment is given so that the child’s risk of infection is significantly reduced.

Also interesting:
Diabetes In Children

FAQ’s On The Subject Of Streptococci In Children

1. What are streptococci?

Streptococci are bacteria that occur naturally in the human organism. Among other things, they are found in the intestinal flora. In addition, the bacteria can also be disease-causing. Streptococci in children can sometimes become very dangerous.

2. What diseases can streptococci cause in children?

There are many different clinical pictures that are triggered by the bacteria. These include upper respiratory tract infections, scarlet fever, angina, meningitis, urinary tract infections, and others.

3. How are streptococcal infections treated?

The drug of the first choice is always penicillin. If the pathogens have developed resistance to the antibiotic, effective drugs can be identified by means of bacterial culture.

4. Is hand-foot disease also caused by streptococci in children?

Hand foot disease is often confused with angina in children. However, hand-foot is not a bacterial disease, but a viral infection.

5. Is strep throat contagious in children?

Streptococcal infections are always considered highly infectious. They are therefore extremely contagious. Affected children should avoid communal facilities. After starting antibiotic therapy, the risk of infection decreases quite rapidly.

6. Are streptococci in children the same as scarlet fever?

No! Scarlet fever is generally caused by streptococcal bacteria, or rather by the Streptococcus toxins. However, the bacteria can cause many other medical conditions besides scarlet fever.

7. Are Streptococcus bacteria dangerous during pregnancy?

If the mother becomes infected with Streptococcus during pregnancy, this can have serious consequences for the child. During birth, newborns become infected with the mother. In addition to meningitis, the consequences can also include serious blood poisoning.

8. Are streptococci in children still contagious after taking antibiotics?

Generally, strep throat in children is highly contagious. After starting antibiotic therapy, the likelihood of infection decreases very quickly. In general, however, you should give the medicine for at least three days.

9. Can children with streptococcus go to school or kindergarten?

Children with streptococcal infection should generally avoid community facilities. The treating physician will provide information on when a child may return to kindergarten or school.

10. Is there a vaccine against streptococcal infections?

Despite years of research, there is no vaccine against Streptococcus bacteria to date.

The best products for you and your baby.

Baby monitor

With a baby monitor, you can use your time flexibly, sleep peacefully at night and still know at all times that your baby is doing well.

Nursing pillow

A good breastfeeding pillow has several advantages, because it helps you not only to breastfeed, but also to fall asleep and is also suitable as a nest.

Diaper bags

A diaper bag offers you a lot of storage space, so that you have everything you need for your baby on the go - from the changing pad to the bottle.

Pucksack

A pucksack gives your baby the feeling of security, like in the womb, and thus supports a peaceful and restful sleep.

Bicycle trailer

Bicycle trailers can be used in combination with a baby seat shortly after birth. They are not only safer than child seats but also more comfortable.

Playpen

A playpen can be very practical in everyday life! Which model is suitable for your needs, you can read in my guide.

Baby bed

The first bed accompanies your child for years. Fortunately, there are beds that grow with your child. I have made for you on the search for the best baby beds.

Stroller

A stroller is a worthwhile purchase. But there are the most diverse models on the market. Find out which is the right one.

Radiant heater

Radiant heaters provide your child with the necessary warmth when changing diapers or after bathing.

Extra bed

Side beds are very practical and offer both mother and baby a lot of advantages, because for babies, especially in the first months of life, it is reassuring to be able to sleep next to their parents.

Leave a Comment