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Common Signs of Common School Ailments

Mononucleosis ("Mono")

Caused by the Epstein-Barr virus (EBV), mono is an infection that most often occurs in older children and adolescents.
 
Some of the signs and symptoms of mono include:
 
  • A sore throat
  • Fever -- a temperature as high as 103ºF (39.5ºC) is not uncommon
  • Swollen glands or lymph nodes, especially in the neck, but also in the armpit and groin
  • Lethargy (exhaustion)
  • Yellowing of the whites of the eyes or skin (jaundice)
 
It is sometimes called the "kissing disease," as it is usually spread through saliva and mucus. Mono can also be spread by sharing the same glass as an infected person, or even being in close proximity when a person coughs or sneezes.
 
It is usually diagnosed by a blood test, as mono can mimic other common illnesses. There is currently no treatment available to kill the viruses that cause mono. Therefore, treatment usually focuses on relieving symptoms. These symptoms usually improve within one or two months without any treatment.
 

Norovirus ("Norwalk Virus")

This is a type of virus that causes vomiting and diarrhea in all ages. It is easy for children with this viral infection to become quickly dehydrated.
 
Symptoms of this illness usually develop suddenly and may include:
 
  • Nausea and vomiting
  • Diarrhea
  • Abdominal (stomach) cramping
  • Mild fever
  • Muscle aches
  • Headaches
  • Fatigue.
 
It is a contagious infection, and symptoms typically last for one to two days. Treatment usually involves rest and keeping your child hydrated with plenty of fluids.
 
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