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Whooping cough (pertussis)
The DTaP (diphtheria, tetanus, pertussis) vaccine should
be given to your child at 2 months, 4 months, 6 months
and 18 months. A booster should be given between the
ages of 4 and 6.
Your child is at risk for
infection to the bacteria if she
is younger than 6 months
old or has not had the
recommended vaccine by
6 months old.
Whooping cough (pertussis) is caused by a bacteria. The germs get into your child's nose, throat and lungs. It starts with cold-like symptoms.
The cough becomes worse in about 10 days. The severe cough may be followed by a "whooping" sound. Your child's face may even turn a bluish or reddish color. It is common to vomit after a coughing spell.
Symptoms of whooping cough are:
- runny nose
- severe coughing that often leads to vomiting (In a younger child it may lead to periods of not breathing or turning blue.)
- a "whooping" sound when taking a breath after coughing
How to make your child feel more comfortable
Give your child:
Antibiotics do not improve the cough but will keep
your child from being able to spread whooping cough.
Make sure your child finishes the prescription, even if
she feels better. Family members will also need to take