accessibility & help

Baby and Child First Aid

First aid for babies and children:

Watch this video, in which a child is treated for meningitis. The information below the video gives you the key steps to help a baby or child who has meningitis.



The baby or child may have flu-like symptoms, a headache and a high temperature. They may also complain of a stiff neck and be sensitive to light. At a later stage, a rash may form (that does not disappear when a glass is pressed against it).

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Other symptoms include: cold hands and feet, joint pain, drowsiness and vomiting. A baby or child with meningitis can have one or more symptoms, and some symptoms occur later on as the infection develops.


If you observe any of these symptoms, call 999.

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A baby or child with meningitis can deteriorate very quickly. It is potentially very serious and needs immediate attention.  Do not wait for all the symptoms to occur.


Give them constant reassurance while waiting for the ambulance.

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If they have a fever, you can give them cold drinks to cool them down.


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Send us your stories

We love to hear from people who have stepped forward to help in a first aid emergency. If you have a first aid story that you'd be happy to share, please email including your name, telephone number and some brief details about what happened. The British Red Cross will only use your information to contact you about your first aid story.

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