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How a WhatsApp discussion led me to understand Meningococcal Meningitis!

We were heading towards the school exit when suddenly a lot of commotion could be seen and heard from the far distance. Teachers and ancillary staff were running to pick a student, who might have fallen due to a heat stroke. Summers in north India is hard, especially around mid-April and its scorching dry heat. Children getting heat stroke is common during afternoon or morning PT hours. We just brushed it off thinking it was a one-off case of heat stroke, we call it Loo-Lagna in Hindi.

Next day at school, we learned about the boy who fell in school the day before was from our class, but a different division. During lunch hour the Principal announced that the next day would be an off, in condolence of our dear student’s demise. Everyone wanted to know the details, but all we could acquire from staff was he succumbed to an extreme headache with fever at the hospital. That episode gave me chills till I learned the possible reason for that. A fatal disease called meningococcal meningitis.

What is Meningitis and is it deadly?

meningitis child disease

Meningitis is an inflammation of the membranes (meninges) surrounding the brain and spinal cord. The swelling of meningitis triggers a headache, fever, and a stiff neck. Different types of meningitis have various triggers, and some are as common as cold and flu. Infants and children are at higher risk due to their immunity structure.

As a parent, our main focus should be on symptoms of meningitis. Early diagnosis can save lives and permanent mental or physical disability. The most aggressive form is bacterial meningitis. Fatal and spreads quickly, hence identifying or being alert for possible symptoms is crucial.

What should parents know about Meningitis?

At the beginning of motherhood or should we call it ‘confused new-mom phase’ I was not very sure of what is right or wrong for my child. Reading and listening to others imbalanced my already confused mind manifolds. Basic motherly instincts probed me to ask even the silliest of doubts, and I am glad that I was not shy about asking questions to the right people.

My daughter’s doctor was kind enough to give me time and explain in detail about the vaccines every child must take. However, the list looked quite confusing as some vaccines were optional. I reached out to her on WhatsApp and shared my worry. In the family, we had had a near-fatal case of meningitis fever which left the child with a partial mental disability. My worry was real, as would it pass on to my child? Or was there a possibility of her contracting it in the future?

meningitis child care and health

The doctor explained to me in detail about the reasons for and the possibility of meningitis, and even if few vaccinations are termed as optional but are still critical for a child’s life. Parent’s awareness is decisive and helps to fight deadly diseases like meningococcal meningitis. If left untreated it has the capability to kill an otherwise healthy person in 24 hours.

She emphasized on discussion with pediatricians, asking questions on need and coverage preventive vaccination provides. Talk to the health experts, ask them the correct time to provide preventive vaccination to children and prevent fatal attacks. Let us take a pledge to safeguard our children from all such deadly diseases.

*Reference website


The views expressed in the blog content are independent and unbiased views of solely the blogger. This is a part of public awareness initiative on meningococcal meningitis supported by Sanofi Pasteur India. Sanofi Pasteur bears no responsibility for the content of the blog. One should consult their healthcare provider for any health-related information.


©Dipika Singh Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from this site’s author and/or owner is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links used, provided that full and clear credit is given to Dipika Singh (Gleefulblogger) with right and specific direction to the original content.

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Mayuri6 · September 9, 2018 at 3:39 pm

It is very important to have a doctor who understands your anxiety or confusion and puts them at rest. Glad you got the right information, and are sharing it too, Dipika.

MeenalSonal · September 9, 2018 at 5:52 pm

My doctor briefed us about this and we got shot done for our little one too. Thanks for spreading awareness.

MeenalSonal from AuraOfThoughts · September 9, 2018 at 6:43 pm

Being microbiologist I’m aware of this diseases and your information is correct to the core.

    gleefulblogger · September 9, 2018 at 6:53 pm

    Thank you Snehalata.

romagptasinha · September 9, 2018 at 9:36 pm

This is vital and critical information. Am gonna sure check with my pediatrician buddy.

TheMomSagas · September 9, 2018 at 11:04 pm

My doc shared with us about this and guided us about the vaccine too. Very informative post 👍🏻

    gleefulblogger · September 10, 2018 at 7:19 pm

    That’s a wonderful thing, thank you for stopping by.

Nidhi Rawal Gautam · September 9, 2018 at 11:36 pm

Really informative.

    gleefulblogger · September 10, 2018 at 8:56 am

    Thank you.

Deepa · September 10, 2018 at 12:18 am

This post is helpful for many parents and is also something which can help to promote awareness about the fatal disease meningitis.

anitapratapsingh · September 10, 2018 at 12:45 am

Aapki post bahut helpful hai, bahut log itna aware nahi rehty, lakin agar kisi bhi bimari ki vaccine hai to hume baccho ko jarur lagwana chaiye, bacche bimar ho ya koi dikkat ho us se jyada taklif ki baat koi nahi hai
Thanks for this post…dil se thank you

Neha Sharma · September 10, 2018 at 11:25 am

That was one hell of a scary incident, I was literally shaking while reading about the little boy. This is really important for parents to understand that prevention is always better than a cure. And if vaccines are available for such a horrific disease, meningococcal meningitis, then why not get it on time. Very informative post, Dipika!

DiaryOfAnInsaneWriter · September 10, 2018 at 11:47 am

As parents, we believe only the best things will happen to our child and we want to brush everything under the carpet. Your post was an eye opener. Thank you for writing this myth-busting post. #MyFriendAlexa #MayuraReads

Bushra · September 10, 2018 at 3:58 pm

We all want our children to be safe and secure. And a little scratch increase our pressure. meningitis symptoms often confused with normal fever. Agree with you awareness is much needed about this fatal disease.

Mummasaurus · September 10, 2018 at 5:33 pm

it already sounds like a very scary disease but knowing more about it is definitely helpful

    gleefulblogger · September 10, 2018 at 7:03 pm

    Thank You Prisha for stopping by.

Dr.Amrita · September 10, 2018 at 10:53 pm

This is a serious problem.indeed.We all need to be more aware and take care of awareness about this disease.

pythoroshan · September 11, 2018 at 12:28 am

Very helpful and informative .thanks for sharing vital info which can actually save lives.

momtasticworld · September 14, 2018 at 2:26 am

This was really helpful, I knew about meningitis but not in detail. Thank you for sharing this.

    gleefulblogger · September 15, 2018 at 3:52 pm

    Thank you Kavita, glad that the post is helpful to you.

Anagha Yatin · September 19, 2018 at 12:33 pm

Meningitis is a deadly and fatal. Recently have come across a case of a friend of my sister in law who suffered from this. Though she is out of danger, after almost 3-4 months, she is yet not recovered completely.
Vaccination is the only defense against it.
Thanks for creating this awareness Dipika

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