Being ill

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There aren’t many things worse than being ill. You may feel tired, grumpy and have no energy to play with your friends. Kids get ill for all sorts of reasons but luckily most illnesses aren’t serious and you'll feel better in a few days. The best thing to do is get some rest and stay hoe so you don't spread your germs to other people.

Here's two of the most common illnesses:


If your throat is scratchy and sore and you can't stop sneezing and sniffing, you'll probably have a cold. Colds are the most common illness in kids – in fact the average kid gets 5 to7 colds every year!

What Should You Do?
  • Drink plenty of hot drinks and water. It will help soothe your throat and flush the germs out of your body.

  • Get an early night. When your body is fighting an infection it needs plenty of rest.

  • Your parents might rub some vapour rub on your chest or apply a few drops of special oil that will help unblock your nose to help you breathe better.

  • A hot bath or shower can help unblock your nose and sooth your muscles if they are aching.

If you also have a fever you may have flu. A fever is when your body temperature is hotter than normal. Even though you will be boiling hot, you'll often feel like you are very cold which will make you shiver. A fever can make you feel very poorly.

An adult will check your temperature with a thermometer. Your normal temperature should be 37 °C so if it is above this, you are probably unwell.


Sickness and diarrhoea (watery poo) are horrible! But they are also your body's way of getting rid of germs or food that might have made you poorly. Your body loses a lot of water when you are being sick and this may make you feel very weak.

What Should You Do?
  • Make sure you tell and adult if you start having stomach pains or feeling sick.

  • Take lots of small sips of water to stop you getting dehydrated. This is when your body gets really ill from not having enough water.

  • You shouldn't try to eat any solid food until you stop being sick. Slowly introduce plain food such as toast and crackers and start drinking more fluids until you start feeling a bit better.

How to avoid getting ill
  • Wash your hands regularly - especially before handling food and after going to the toilet.

  • Check with your parents before helping yourself to food.

  • If reheating food, make sure it is very hot before you eat it which will help kill any germs.

  • Taking exercise can help keep your body fit and healthy.

  • Eating a balanced diet with lots of fruit and vegetables provides your body with the fuel it needs to help fight germs.

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