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What Are The 5 Most Common Childhood Illnesses: A Quick Overview

What Are The 5 Most Common Childhood Illnesses: A Quick Overview

Being a parent it is very difficult to deal with a sick child. It is very common for children to get sick because their immune system is not as strong as an adult’s. It is a very usual question of parents what are the 5 most common childhood illnesses? Influenza, ear infections, common cold, bronchitis, and conjunctivitis are the most common childhood illness.

In this blog, we will discuss what are the 5 most common childhood illnesses. Causes and the treatment of these illnesses would also be discussed.

The first few years of a child’s life are so difficult in terms of health. A child’s body immune system is so weak and always ready to get infected easily. Secondly, most children are not experts in terms of health and hygiene and get infected by viruses and bacteria.

It takes some years for the immune system, to get strong and fight bacteria. Once the immune system gets strong it becomes very easy for the body to fight illnesses and diseases easily. Still, if we know about what are the 5 most common childhood illnesses, their causes, and treatment then it becomes very easy to deal with them quickly.

What are the 5 most common childhood illnesses?

It is so hard to protect a child from getting sick ever. But it is important to know about the diseases in detail which are so common in childhood. This will help the parents to take some safety measures and child care initiatives against nasty bugs and to deal with illnesses.

Kids spend most of their time playing. And when children play together there is a higher chance of infection exchange. Germs can be supplied and spread easily among the kids. This is particularly true for viral diseases because a viral germ spreads easily and quickly. When they play together they exchange their germs and get sick. This is why it is necessary to keep sick individuals away from healthy ones.

Moreover, infants and toddlers play with the toys. And they use the same hands to rub their eyes, nose, hand, foot, and mouth gums without a wash. In this process, babies transfer outside virus, bacteria, and germs into their bodies and get sick. This is the main reason that kids get sick again and again.

The 5 most common childhood illnesses are as follows

  • Influenza
  • Ear infections
  • Common cold
  • Bronchitis
  • Conjunctivitis


Basically, influenza is caused by a virus that can be easily spread when infected people sneeze or cough without covering their mouths and nose. It directly attacks the respiratory system, mouth, nose, and throat. Influenza is commonly known as flu. There are two types of flu: one is common flu and the other is stomach flu.

Common Influenza

Common influenza is typically known as flu. In the start, the flu may seem like a common cold such as runny nose, sore throat, sneezing, and itching in the nose are common flu symptoms. It stays for seven to ten days normally. But if it is not treated in time it keeps on developing towards the worst conditions, for instance, fever, body pain, weakness, and irritation. So if you see any of the above symptoms in your kids see the doctor immediately and seek medical advice.

Stomach Flu

Stomach pain, abdominal pain, cramping, fever, nausea, headache, diarrhea, and vomiting are the common symptoms of stomach flu. Children are prone to get dehydrated easily. If you observe that the child has dry lips, dry skin, or not producing wet diapers, then you need to pay extra attention.

stomach flu is one illness among what are the 5 most common childhood illnesses
Adults also get depressed due to the illness of babies, they must complete the medicine course to get rid of the illness completely.


The most common causes of influenza are as follows:

  • bacterial infection
  • physical contact with an already infected person
  • not washing hands after visiting the bathroom
  • putting dirty hands in the mouth
  • eating polluted or infected food
  • improper washing of hand, foot, and mouth
  • drinking contaminated water
  • breathing in dusty and polluted air


  • give rehydration solution
  • try to give clear fluid
  • give proper bed rest
  • antivirus drugs prescribed by the doctor according to age
  • get the flu vaccine after consulting the child’s doctor immediately
  • wash hands properly
  • keep mouth and nose covered especially during the flu season
  • give bananas, curd, breastmilk, etc.
  • Also, arrange simple hot water steam for the child
  • try to give lukewarm water to drink as it will help the throat to get better

Ear infections

This type of infection attacks the middle ear, which is an air-filled space behind the eardrum. It contains the tiny vibrating bones of the ear. Children are more likely than adults to get ear infections. Because children are unable to take much care of their hygiene. They play with mud, water, and sand carelessly to enjoy. These substances also contain bacteria which can cause infection.

Children with ear infections feel difficulty laying down peacefully due to ear pain. Therefore, they can not enjoy the sound and complete sleep. This ear pain not only disturbing for the child but also for the parents and caregivers. Such children cry more due to pain and irritation.

Ear infection can also cause high fever and loss of appetite. The child feels trouble responding to the sounds and feels headaches. You can see the flow or drainage of fluid from the ear if the infection is getting worse. You must not wait for a few days and must see the doctor for disease control.


  • ear infection can be caused by bacteria or viruses
  • in most cases cold, flu, or some other allergy can also cause infection
  • if water enters and stays in the middle ear
  • some tiny bug can enter the ear and can cause a problem
  • Swelling can block eustachian tubes which can cause fluids to build up in the middle ear.


  • try to avoid the common cold and other respiratory infections.
  • avoid direct contact with secondhand smoke such as cigarettes, coal, and vehicles.
  • breastfeed your baby, if possible then feed him/her while sitting.
  • if the baby takes a bottle feed then hold him in an upright position.
  • take extra care about cleanliness and hygiene.
  • if a child insists to play with water, soil or other substances then try to cover his/her ears with cotton or some other covers.
  • visit the doctor and take prescribed medicines to get rid of the infection.

Common cold (sore throat that is a mouth disease)

This is one of the most common illnesses if you are searching for what are the 5 most common childhood illnesses. This is also caused by virus that can easily spread in the air. When people have close contact with each other it gets transferred easily. When you see your child with trouble breathing, sneezing, with a stuffy and runny nose get alert as it can be the first symptom of the common cold.

what are the 5 most common childhood illnesses, common cold is one of them
What are the 5 most common childhood illnesses? The common cold is one of them.

Children who can communicate if they report about tickle in the throat, start taking precautions as it can be the early sign of a common cold. And they can become patients of the common cold. Therefore children who get the common cold feel tired, have sore throats, bitter taste in the mouth, have a mild fever, and loss of appetite. Children can also have green or yellow discharge from the nose.


  • rhinoviruses are the most common reason behind the common cold.
  • common cold viruses enter from the mouth, nose, and eyes. It can infect the lungs as well.
  • when a sick person coughs, sneezes, or talks the droplets from his mouth mix into the air and can spread infection. Keep the infants away from an infected person.
  •  hand-to-hand contact also becomes the cause of spread.
  • infected objects can cause the spread of infection like eating utensils, towels, toys, or telephones.


The common cold is a disease that does not has direct treatment. But it can be treated with over-the-counter medications such as antibiotics, acetaminophen, or ibuprofen to deal with symptoms such as fever, muscle pain, headache, etc.


Searching for what are the 5 most common childhood illnesses? Bronchitis is one of them. It occurs when the bronchial tubes get inflamed that is responsible to carry air to and from the lungs to the body. This disease can be from mild to severe. Commonly, the common cold or other respiratory infections become the base of bronchitis.

Bronchitis is one of the most common childhood illness.
Strep throat is one of the new symptoms of bronchitis. Bronchitis and strep throat can lead to asthma.

If this illness is not treated in time then bronchitis turns into chronic which is so alarming for both the health and life of the baby. Because bronchitis is considered one of the conditions of chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD). Which can cause even death, still, this can be treated. Normally, with proper treatment, it can be improved in seven to ten days or more. But cough may still present for a few weeks.

Children suffering from bronchitis complain about cough, shortness of breath, trouble breathing, fever, chest discomfort, fatigue, and the production of mucus.


Bronchitis is typically caused by

  • viruses
  • upper respiratory infections
  • cigarette smoke
  • air pollution
  • dust
  • toxic gases in the environment
  • Exposure to infected ones


  • in most cases, you can treat bronchitis at home with proper rest.
  • plenty of fluids intake
  • non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs or antibiotics
  • honey
  • by wearing a surgical mask
  • by avoiding contaminated air or smoke
  • adults must help the kids to complete the medicine course prescribed by the doctor.


Conjunctivitis is also known as pink eye. It occurs when some infection attacks the conjunctiva the transparent membrane of the eyes. From the naked eye, we can see the white part of the eyes gets pink or red. In the conjunctiva, there are small blood vessels. When these blood vessels get inflamed, the white part of the eyes becomes reddish or pink.

what are the 5 most common childhood illnesses? Conjunctivitis is one of them.
A child suffering from conjunctivitis/pink eye must stay away from other children.

If a child gets conjunctivitis, he will complain about irritation and itchiness. He will experience gritty feelings in one or both eyes. There will be discharge from one or both eyes and it gets thick, especially during sleep. Due to the thickness of this discharge, the child cannot open his eyes and cry a lot.

Besides all these issues, conjunctivitis or pink eye rarely affects the eyesight of the victim. If you are searching for what are the 5 most common childhood illnesses? Then conjunctivitis is the fifth most common disease in children. you must take your child to the doctor to start treatment. Because early diagnosis and treatment can limit its spread.


  • bacterial or viral infections are the most common cause of pink eyes.
  • it can occur due to an allergic reaction.
  • an incomplete opening of the tear duct.
  • chemical splash in the eye.
  • some tiny object enters the eye
  • blocked tear duct.


  • prescribed antibiotics from the doctor
  • eye drops
  • eye ointment
  • wash hands and eyes often
  • do not share eye cosmetics or eye care items
  • do not touch the eyes often
  • change the pillowcase regularly


It is very necessary for new and already parents to know about what are the 5 most common childhood illnesses? It is beneficial to know about their causes and treatments as well. Knowing about the causes will help parents to take preventive measures. And knowing about the treatment will help the parent to take quick action if the child gets sick.

So, parents remain prepared to fight the illnesses. This article will help a lot to know about the 5 most common childhood illnesses. It will also answer some other answers such as why my child gets sick often and how to get rid of it. Parenting is a full-time job and if the child gets ill then it becomes a difficult one. Therefore, this article is a kit to use in those difficult hours.

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About The Author

Qurratulain Nabeel

This is QURRATULAIN - an M.Phil in Applied Psychology. Being a mother of two I tried to put my knowledge into practice, which proved very beneficial for me. By using the platform of I am so pleased to share my experience with people all around the world.

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