Fever is enough to make any concerned parent panic—it can be a nightmare when a child appears flushed and miserable while running a very high fever. It is important to remember, however, that fever actually helps the child fight off infections, and a slight fever has to be monitored before you rush to your child’s Westminster pediatrician.
The need to see a doctor will depend on your child’s age, his temperature, and the symptoms which indicate a deeper problem.
When to call
For infants, the recommendation regarding fever depends on their age. An infant under three months old needs a physician if his temperature reaches 100.4ºF. For infants three to six months, a fever reaching 101ºF require a physician’s attention. For babies over six months, a fever reaching 103ºF will be the time to call.
Fever home care tips
If your child’s fever doesn’t reach these temperatures and he is otherwise active, eats well, and shows no signs of being sick, home treatment may be all that’s needed to bring his fever down. WebMD recommends the following tips for babies below 1 year of age, to ensure your child doesn’t get dehydrated while he or she has a fever:
- If you breast-feed your baby, nurse him or her more often. Offer each breast to your baby for 1 to 2 minutes every 10 minutes.
- If you use a bottle to feed your baby, increase the number of feedings to make up for lost fluids. A newborn may need as little as 1 fl oz (30 mL) at each extra feeding, while a 12-month-old baby may need as much as 3 fl oz (90 mL) at each extra feeding.
- Do not give your baby plain water. Use an oral rehydration solution (ORS) if your baby still isn’t getting enough fluids from formula or the breast.
- If your baby has started eating cereal, you may replace lost fluids with cereal. You also may feed your baby strained bananas and mashed potatoes if your child has had these foods before.
What if the child is without fever and something appears wrong?
Parenting involves gut instincts. Sometimes, even if your child doesn’t have any fever, you may feel that something is out of the ordinary. If you sense that something is wrong with your child, you are encouraged to call your physician immediately. A reassurance that your child’s fine is always worth a visit to a Westminster pediatrics office like Indian Crest Pediatrics, where you will receive the best possible advice and health care for your child.
(Source: Fever or Chills, Age 11 and Younger – Home Treatment, WebMD)