Mum helps others to spot meningitis signs

Rachel Tuppen & her son Dylan Tuppen-Drummond-Hay (5). SUS-140922-164425001
Rachel Tuppen & her son Dylan Tuppen-Drummond-Hay (5). SUS-140922-164425001

A Seaford mum has spoken about her son having meningitis to help raise awareness.

Rachel Tuppen’s son Dylan had the disease when he was 10 months old in 2009.

Rachel, now a mum of four, said Dylan didn’t have the rash but had all the other symptoms.

She told the Gazette, “It was flu and cold symptoms and he was off his food but he also went very lethargic.

“He was crawling at that point and when I put him on the floor he just sat there, where as normally he wouldn’t still and always wanted to be on the go.”

Rachel said she knew something wasn’t right and took swift action.

She said, “My GP told us to get to hospital urgently and he was treated and luckily made a full recovery with a slight speech problem but it made me realise how lucky we were compared to others who have been less fortunate.”

International charity Meningitis Research Foundation estimates that meningitis and septicaemia affect around nine people in the UK and Ireland every day.

They are deadly diseases that can strike without warning, killing one in ten, and leaving a quarter of survivors with life altering after-effects ranging from deafness and brain damage to loss of limbs. Children under five and students are most at risk, but the diseases can strike at any age and not all forms are currently covered by vaccines.

Rachel said Dylan was 24 hours away from losing his life and she is now keen to spread the word.

She said, “I’m supporting Meningitis Awareness Week as everyone needs to know the symptoms so they can seek medical help fast.”

The symptoms for meningitis and septicaemia include:

•Fever and vomiting

•Severe headache

•Limb, joint or muscle pain

•Cold hands and feet or shivering

•Pale of mottled skin

•Breathing fast or breathless


•Stiff neck

•Sleepy and difficult to wake

•Dislike of lights


•Seizures or fits

Visit for more information.