Baby & child sickness

Get help quickly from a doctor or phone 111 if your baby or child shows any of the danger signs listed below.


  • You cannot wake them or they respond less than usual to what is going on around them.
  • They have glazed eyes and are not focusing on anything.
  • They seem more floppy, drowsy or less alert than usual.
  • They have a convulsion or fit.
  • They have an unusual cry (high-pitched, weak, or continuous) for one hour or more.
  • They have severe tummy pain.
  • They have a bulge or lump in their groin (where the thigh joins the body)that gets bigger when they cry.


  • Their skin is much paler than usual or suddenly goes very white.
  • Their nails are blue, or their big toe is completely white or spotty, or the colour does not return to the toe within three seconds of a squeeze.
  • The skin around their mouth turns blue.
  • A rash develops with reddish-purple spots or bruises — it’s especially important if the spots or bruises don’t disappear when you press a glass onto them.


  • They find it difficult to breathe or stop breathing.
  • They breathe more quickly than normal or grunt when breathing out.
  • They make a high-pitched whistling sound (wheezing) when breathing out.


  • They have vomited (thrown up) at least half the feed (food or milk) after each of the last three feeds.
  • Their vomit is green.
  • They have both vomiting and diarrhoea (loose and watery poo).
  • They have drunk less and have fewer wet nappies or visits to the toilet than usual.
  • They have blood in their poo.

If you are worried about your baby or child, ring Healthline (0800 611-116) or take them to their doctor or practice nurse.


  • Ambulance 111
  • National Poisons Centre 0800 764-766
  • Healthline 0800 611-116

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