All kids get fevers, but the temperature reading shouldn’t be your first concern. It’s the underlying illness that matters most, whether it is COVID-19, meningitis, or a urinary tract infection.
Fever is the body’s natural reaction to fight infection. When kids get a fever, it’s important to treat it. Treatment with acetaminophen (Tylenol) or ibuprofen (Advil, Motrin) helps lower the fever. Give the right dose for your child’s weight, every 6 to 8 hours, as needed. If your child has trouble swallowing pills, try giving them a liquid or chewable form of the medicine. The right medicines for your child’s age and weight will make a big difference in how well they feel.
Keep Your Child Warm
The key to keeping your child warm when they have a fever is to choose clothing that traps heat close to their skin and insulates them from the cold. This is usually achieved by using a one- or two-piece close-fitting sleeper in a lightweight fabric that wicks moisture away from the skin. Afterwards, check on them regularly so you can adjust their bed, clothes, or room temperature to ensure they stay warm.
Keep Your Child Hydrated
Dehydration is common among children, so keeping your child hydrated when treating a fever is especially important. This can help prevent heat exhaustion, which may result in muscle weakness and fatigue. Water, milk and 100 percent fruit and vegetable juices are best for hydration. These options are hydrating and contain no added sugars or processed minerals. Fruits are a great hydration option as well; strawberries, watermelon and grapes have natural sugars that will get your child’s body rehydrated. Plus, these foods will help revitalize them with a good dose of vitamins and minerals to keep their bodies healthy.
If your child has a high fever (104 F or higher), it’s important to avoid overexertion when treating their fever. Overexertion can cause rhabdomyolysis, which occurs when the muscles break down and release toxic waste. Overexertion injuries can result in sprains, strains, and tears to joints, tendons, ligaments, and muscles. These injuries can cause pain, numbness, stiffness, and loss of mobility in these areas.
Take Your Child To The Doctor
A fever is a sign that your child’s body is fighting germs. It can also mean a mild bacterial infection, but it’s still important to take your child to the doctor when they have a fever that lasts more than a few days or if they have other symptoms that might be a sign of something more serious. When you go to the doctor for your child, be honest with them. Explain what will happen and let them ask questions.