A mum whose baby was taken to hospital with Covid twice wants other parents to be aware that young children can become ill with the disease.
Jack Tingle was rushed to hospital in November after he woke up screaming with a high temperature. His dad, Jordan Tingle, had been diagnosed with Covid the week before and while mum Shauna Ryall did everything to keep the pair apart, baby Jack ultimately picked up the virus.
The family, from Porth, Rhondda, knew what to look out for after Jordan, an electrician, came down with the symptoms of a cough and high temperature, so when Jack woke up “hot to the touch” they immediately took him to the Royal Glamorgan Hospital where a chest x-ray identified the virus on the then six-month-old Jack.
“To touch him he was like a hot water bottle,” said 25-year-old Shauna.
“It was not a slow symptom, he woke up at 3am with this raging temperature. I went into panic mode. We took him straight to the hospital because his temperature was through the roof. They did a chest x-ray and that is where they picked up the Covid first, they could see it.”
Because Jack was calm he was allowed to return home with antibiotics but he was home for about four days before his parents felt they needed to take him back to hospital.
“He was screaming and it was not like a normal scream it was piercing,” said Shauna.
Fortunately, Jack was checked over and was again given the go-ahead to go home but Shauna and Jordan were told to bring him straight back in if things changed overnight.
Shauna said the symptoms Jack experienced were like those associated with adults and like those her partner Jordan also suffered. Earlier this week, another parent described their terror when his baby boy was rushed into hospital gasping for breath with Covid-19 after catching it from him and his partner, both of whom had tested positive days previously — you can read that story here.
“He had a cough, sickness and diarrhoea, he was off his food and they said that it was probably from his taste going off,” said Shauna.
“We didn’t really think because he was younger he could get it.”
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He also had a small rash which is one of the symptoms that children who suffered with coronavirus inflammatory disease experience.
Jack is now seven and a half months old and has only now started to sleep properly again.
He also was turned off his food so much he was back being milk-fed, despite previously already being weaned onto solid food.
“He has only started sleeping tidily again he didn’t sleep pretty much for a month. He was not himself for ages, he had to go back on milk completely and only now he is eating food again even though we had already weaned him once,” said Shauna.
“We never expected him to catch Covid, and I was one of the people who thought if he has it he will be fine.”
She wants other parents to watch out for the symptoms and not to believe, as she did, that their child can’t get ill with the virus: “Try not to believe this idea that my baby will be fine.”