Little Orange Book – expert advice on helping babies and young children when they’re poorly

When your baby has a bunged up nose or is wheezy, it may be challenging to know whether to treat your child at home or if you need to take your child to the doctors or hospital. Tees Valley CCG, working with County Durham CCG (my local CCG hence my interest in amplifying their message!), has produced several Little Orange Book resources, designed to help the parents of babies and small children displaying cold symptoms and breathing problems.

During the pandemic, children have mixed less, and some under-twos haven’t yet developed the usual immunity to everyday illnesses. The NHS expects more babies and toddlers to get common viruses like Respiratory Syncytial Virus (RSV) during the winter months.

Respiratory Syncytial Virus (RSV) is a common virus most children catch before they turn two. Whilst most cases are mild and can be treated at home, RSV can be more serious in tiny babies, premature babies, and those born with a heart condition or respiratory illness.

Is your child displaying any of these symptoms? Or others that may concern you?

  • Cold symptoms and a rattly chest/ dry cough
  • Rattles and wheezes that make it harder to feed
  • A high temperature
  • Pauses in breathing
  • A change in colour

Try consulting the materials linked below to ensure your child receives the proper medical attention:

The Coughs and Noisy Breathing in Young Babies leaflet has been designed to guide parents on when to nurse their child at home and when to seek further medical advice.

You can also watch a short video (below) to find out more about the symptoms of RSV and what help you can access if you are concerned.

The entire Little Orange Book, which covers a wide range of ailments in children from common minor illnesses like teething, constipation and colds, through to more severe conditions, can be downloaded here.