Figuring Out Your Child’s Fever
- July 10, 2017
- Posted by: marlenedubois
- Category: CPR Training
Fever is actually the number one reason which children are taken to hospital emergency rooms. which is actually not surprising. Fevers are frequent in childhood, along with they are often frightening to both parent along with child. What follows is actually a set of questions along with answers written to address which fear along with to help parents know what to do when their child is actually hot.
Q: WHAT is actually A FEVER?
A: A fever is actually a body temperature which is actually higher than normal ( 98.6 F or 37 C) as measured by a thermometer in Fahrenheit or Centrigrade degrees. Although they can help children to fight infections, fevers can also be uncomfortable along with worrisome-depending on how high they climb along with how old the child happens to be.
Q: HOW WILL I KNOW which MY CHILD features a FEVER?
A: Children with fever will feel hot along with show certain improvements in their behavior depending on their age. Newborns will be either fussier or sleepier than usual-or both; they will refuse the breast or bottle; along with they are apt to have fewer, drier diapers than normal. Older babies along with toddlers will be cranky, “clingy”, along with less energetic than usual. They will have no appetite nevertheless will seem especially thirsty. Finally, toddlers will either be quite listless along with sleepy or very irritable along with have difficulty falling asleep. Older children, over age 2, will be whiny along with tired, will ask for drinks, along with sometimes will complain of having chills or “hurting all over.” If you note any of these improvements in your child, no matter how old he is actually, which is actually smart to take his temperature.
Q: HOW DO I TAKE A TEMPERATURE?
A: There are so many different kinds of thermometer readily available for purchase at drug stores which which can be confusing to know which is actually best along with for what age child. which might be smart to check with your pediatrician about her favorites especially since she knows your family well. Having said which, there are some tricks to choosing thermometers along with to taking temperatures, as noted below:
o Best for Babies: A Rectal Temp
o Rinse your thermometer with cool water along with then put petroleum jelly on the tip;
o With the baby on his tummy, put the thermometer into his rectum about one inch;
o Keep one hand on his back along with the various other holding the thermometer in place until which beeps.
o Expect your baby to cry nevertheless know which you are not hurting him; which is actually uncomfortable for him nevertheless not painful.
o Best for Preschoolers: An Axillary Temp
o Place the thermometer tip in your child’s armpit along with hold his arm next to his body until the beep.
o Axillary temps are usually about a degree cooler than rectal.
o Best for Big Kids: An Oral Temp
o Keep your child by drinking anything hot or cold for 20 minutes;
o Rinse the oral thermometer in cold water;
o Place its tip under your child’s tongue until the beep.
If you take your child’s temperature along with then decide to call the doctor, make sure to explain what kind of thermometer you used. which will eliminate some of the confusion which sometimes arises about the reliability or meaning of a temperature reading. Also, please note which ear, pacifier along with band-aid strip thermometers are not considered reliable for home use. Temporal artery thermometers are being developed, are expensive, along with are still considered controversial.
Q: HOW CAN I HELP MY CHILD FEEL BETTER?
A: Fevers do not need to be treated, nevertheless children do. If your child is actually uncomfortable with his fever-feeling achy or having chills-then there are several tips to help him feel better.
o Give him medicine.
o Acetaminophen (Tylenol) along with ibuprofen (Advil, Motrin) are highly recommended. Avoid aspirin, cold or cough medicine.
o Because Advil, Motrin along with Tylenol come in many forms (like liquids or chewables) along with many strengths, check with the pharmacist about the best choice along with dose for your child. Generic medicines are fine along with cheaper than “brands.”
o Rectal suppositories are very helpful if your child is actually vomiting. Your pharmacist will have these behind his counter.
o Ibuprofen should not be used in children younger than 6 months or in dehydrated children.
o Give him a bath after giving him medicine as above.
o which is actually suggested for children with very high fevers along with/or previous seizures with fever.
o The bath should be its usual warmth or slightly cooler, not frigid. Your child is actually not a polar bear!
o Do not add alcohol to the bath: alcohol can cause coma.
o Water evaporating by the skin cools your child. Gently wet (along with rewet) his back along with head which has a washcloth to bring down his fever as he plays.
o Keep him cool.
o Dress him in a t-shirt or summer pajamas.
o Take the extra blankets off his bed.
o Make sure his room is actually cool.
o Give him extra drinks
o Fever increases your child’s need for liquid.
o He is actually getting enough to drink if he urinates normally (wets his diapers well) along with has lots of tears.
Many parents respond to their child’s complaint which he feels cold by bundling him up, forgetting which his primary problem is actually fever. nevertheless he is actually already too hot! If your child features a fever, which is actually better to pretend which which is actually a hot summer day: water play, cool clothes along with cool drinks will help bring down his fever.
Q: WHEN SHOULD I WORRY ABOUT A FEVER?
A: There are excellent pediatric guidelines about fever along with when to worry as noted below. Call your pediatrician if:
o Your child’s fever is actually over 100.4ºF (38ºC) along with he is actually less than 3 months old;
o Your child’s fever is actually over 102ºF (39ºC) along with he is actually less than 2 years old;
o Your child’s fever is actually over 104ºF (40ºC) along with he is actually over 2 years old.
If you are worried about your child-even if his fever is actually lower than which listed above–please err on the side of calling for advice. Trust your instinct.
Q: WHEN SHOULD I CALL THE DOCTOR?
A: In addition to calling the pediatrician because your child features a fever inside the “worrisome” range described above, which is actually necessary to call if your child has:
o Even a low- grade fever if he features a chronic disease like sickle cell anemia, diabetes, cystic fibrosis, neutropenia, or if he is actually on steroids;
o Severe pain anywhere, a stiff neck, persistent vomiting or diarrhea, or a fresh purplish rash;
o Difficulty breathing or blue nail beds or lips;
o A seizure (rhythmic motion of his extremities which you cannot stop);
o Unusual sleepiness or fussiness even after his fever goes down;
o An illness without fever for a few days along with then a fresh fever;
o “Just something wrong” which worries you, especially if he is actually a newborn.
Q: WHAT WILL THE DOCTOR DO? WILL SHE GIVE ANTIBIOTICS?
A: Of course what the doctor will do depends to some extent on what your child has in addition to his fever. If your child features a worrisome fever for his age, the doctor will talk to you both along with examine your child. She will consider ordering tests (like blood work or a urine culture). She may hospitalize him if your child is actually either very young or appears very sick.
The doctor will give your child antibiotics if she has diagnosed a bacterial infection like strep throat or pneumonia. She will not give him antibiotics for viral infections like colds or the flu. The fact which a child features a fever does not mean which he should be treated with antibiotics!
Q: WHEN MAY MY CHILD RETURN TO DAYCARE OR SCHOOL?
A: Most children with fever do not feel well, along with many of them are contagious. Your child should not go back to daycare or school until:
o He has had no fever for 24 hours after stopping acetaminophen or ibuprofen.
o He is actually acting like himself again.
If you are unsure about when your child may return to school, check with your pediatrician. She will give you excellent advice based on experience with your child.
Fevers along with childhood go together like peanut butter along with jelly– except which no one likes fevers. Because everyone eventually gets them, which is actually best to be prepared. Have an appropriate thermometer along with medicine on hand to ensure, if your child gets his first fever inside the middle of the night, you will be ready to offer the comfort along with care he needs.
The purpose of which article is actually to educate. While every effort has been made to ensure its accuracy, its content should not be construed as definitive medical advice along with is actually not a substitute for the professional judgment of your child’s health care provider in diagnosing along with treating illness. Because each child’s health care needs are unique along with because medical knowledge is actually always evolving, please consult a qualified health care professional to obtain the most current recommendations appropriate to your child’s medical care. Neither the author nor the publisher shall be liable for any outcome or damages resulting by reliance upon the content of which publication.
MOTRIN® is actually a registered trademark of Johnson & Johnson. TYLENOL® is actually a registered trademark of The Tylenol Company. ADVIL® is actually a registered trademark of Wyeth. No association, affiliation or endorsement of which article or its contents by the referenced companies is actually intended or implied.