When should we worry about fever?

Fever is a common symptom in children, and it can be alarming for parents to see their child's temperature rise. However, fever is a natural response to an infection or illness, and in most cases, it is nothing to worry about. In this blog post, we will discuss everything you need to know about children and fever.

What is fever?

Fever is defined as a body temperature above the normal range, which is typically around 98.6°F (37°C) for adults. In children, a temperature of 100.4°F (38°C) or higher is considered a fever. Fever is not an illness in itself but is a sign that the body is fighting off an infection or illness.

Causes of fever in children

Fever can be caused by a wide variety of illnesses, including viral infections, bacterial infections, and other conditions. Some of the most common causes of fever in children include:

  • Cold and flu

  • Ear infections

  • Urinary tract infections

  • Strep throat

  • Roseola

  • Hand, foot, and mouth disease

  • Measles

  • Meningitis

  • Pneumonia

Symptoms of fever in children

In addition to a higher body temperature, fever in children can cause a variety of symptoms, including:

  • Chills and shivering

  • Sweating

  • Headache

  • Muscle aches and pains

  • Loss of appetite

  • Fatigue

  • Dehydration

When to see a doctor

In most cases, fever is not a cause for concern and will go away on its own within a few days. However, there are certain situations where you should seek medical attention for your child, including:

  • If your child is under three months old and has a fever of 100.4°F (38°C) or higher

  • If your child is between three and six months old and has a fever of 101°F (38.3°C) or higher

  • If your child has a fever of 104°F (40°C) or higher

  • If your child has a fever that lasts for more than three days

  • If your child has other symptoms, such as a stiff neck, severe headache, or difficulty breathing

Treating fever in children

In most cases, fever in children will go away on its own within a few days. However, there are steps you can take to help your child feel more comfortable during this time, including:

  • Encouraging your child to rest

  • Making sure your child stays hydrated by offering plenty of fluids

  • Giving your child over-the-counter fever reducers, such as acetaminophen or ibuprofen, as directed by a pediatrician

  • Dressing your child in lightweight clothing and keeping the room cool

  • Using a cool, damp cloth to help reduce fever

It is important to note that aspirin should not be given to children with fever, as it has been linked to a rare but serious condition called Reye’s syndrome.

In conclusion, fever is a common symptom in children and is usually nothing to worry about. However, if your child has a fever that is causing concern, it is always best to consult with a pediatrician. With the right care and attention, most children will recover from fever and go back to their normal activities in no time.

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