High Fever In Children

High fever in chidren is the immune system fighting the infection. Learn when fever warrants a physician.

Touching the forehead of your child and noticing that he or she has an elevated temperature is a reason for apprehension in most parents, although we understand fever is our body responding to an infection or perhaps an inflammation.

Fever in infants and small children is considered high if it is anything 100 degrees or higher, and in children who are of school age 99 degrees or higher. The evaluation of temperatures will vary with the opinion of individual physicians.

Fever is a symptom; it is a normal counteraction to infection. The natural response by the body to infection is to increase its temperature. Studies have shown that fever helps the body to resist infection. The fever indicates the body's immune system is at work, and functioning.

The best thermometers are the famous old standby, the glass thermometer, and the second best is the digital thermometer. The "ear thermometer" is useful however does not work so well with infants because of the smallness of the ear canals.

You physician knows the attributes of fever, and although parents feel better when the fever is down this alone does not reduce the infection. The child, who has fever will however, feels more comfortable when the fever is reduced. A physician should always see any infant who has a fever.

If your child has a temperature of up to 103 degrees F, this is considered a mild fever. Make sure he or she drinks enough fluids. Keep them dressed in very cool and comfortable clothing. Overdressing will raise the temperature. Do not give aspirin to children under the age of 20 years. Acetaminophen may be given, check the label for dosage instructions.

If your child has a fever over the mild fever range, above 103 degrees, bathe your child in tepid (lukewarm) water for 10-15 minutes. If the fever continues after the bath call your physician.

Get in touch with your physician if¡K

- There are convulsions, immediately!

- Pain that is persistent and is not normal.

- Pain in the abdomen

- Diarrhea and vomiting.

- Any time the child complains of hurting when urinating.

- Any sort of rash.

- The child complains of ear pain.

- Watch your child as he breathes, if it is labored and rapid, then call the doctor.

- Listless and tired unable to build any energy for any extended length of time.

- Headache, with complaints of "neck hurting" or if he or she is confused.

Inform the physician, when you arrive. It is a good idea to have a written record of the child's symptoms and temperature readings at various times of the day. Also the last medication given and the name of the drug.

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