Skip to main content


One of the biggest dilemmas a parent faces is whether or not their child is truly ill or they just are pretending if it means they can skip out on a day of school.

Here are some ways that can help you determine what is really going on with them so you know whether they need rest, a trip to the doctor, or a heavy dose of tough love that sends them on their way to school:

  1. Check their temperature: Having an elevated temperature, or fever, is a sure sign of flu or some type of infection. Although normal body temperature varies, you can be sure your child is ill if their temperature goes over 100.4 degrees Fahrenheit. You want to be very careful of fever as this could be a sign of swine flu, which can be deadly in small children. A great tool to use is Vivalnk’s thermometer, which is a comfortable wearable, wireless, and bluetooth enabled thermometer. It provides a convenient and stress-free way to monitor your child’s temperature without waking them up from their nap or wrestling to get a thermometer under their tongue or across their forehead. It is made from Vivalnk’s soft and flexible eSkin™ that contains a delicate and intricate network of sensors that can accurate and safely read your child’s temperature and alerts you if the fever should spike or raise above customizable temperatures.
  2. Be on the lookout for other signs: Your child may have the flu if they also have body aches and seem listless. There could be a cough as well. A regular cold tends to have milder signs, including a runny or stuffed nose.
  3. Look at their tonsils or their eyes: Sometimes it could be tonsillitis so it is important to look at their tonsils. Signs include swollen tonsils that look like raw hamburger meat. Another concern is if your child has red eyes and significant discharge as this is an indicator of the highly contagious “pink eye” condition. This infection also goes by the name of conjunctivitis and requires antibiotics and rest.
  4. Observe their skin: You may find that they have a rash or spots, which could be an indication of chicken pox. Although rare thanks to immunizations, there still may be the possibility, so you would need to take them into the doctor immediately to get treatment started.
  5. Try to contend with vomiting or diarrhea: There could be a wide array of illnesses associated with your child’s bout of diarrhea or vomiting, including stomach flu or food poisoning all of which require a visit to the doctor. If this happens more than twice in a 24-hour period you want to keep a close eye on your child. You want to take care of these immediately and ensure that your child is properly hydrated because dehydration sets in faster than you may think.
  6. Investigate potentially deeper medical issues: Children can get Type 1 Diabetes and may need to monitor their blood sugar levels. That’s why companies like Dexcom are introducing ways for parents to help easily track the blood sugar levels of their children through their smartphones to ensure that they have no medical emergencies related to this condition. This also takes away the need for needles, which children – and adults – definitely dread in monitoring their blood sugar levels.

After any trips to the doctor, the best prescription after any medicine is plenty of fluids and rest along with a healthy dose of cartoons with a pillow and their favorite stuffed animal on the sofa. While technology is offering some great ways to more effectively monitor the extent of your child’s illness, it still comes down to Moms mostly know best in terms of sensing and taking care of health needs. Still, technology is now there to reduce the hassle and stress that often arises when dealing with a sick child.