A fever is your body’s natural way of responding to a variety of conditions such as infections, colds, and earaches, but it can be uncomfortable, especially for children. The next time your child has a fever, try some of these techniques to keep your child as comfortable as possible while the natural healing process takes place.
Does My Child Have a Fever?
A normal body temperature is 97–98.6˚ F, but body temperature sometimes varies among people and throughout the day. Sometimes a child’s temperature may be lower in the morning and higher in the afternoon. Your child may have a fever if his or her temperature is
- higher than 99˚ F measured under the arm
- higher than 100˚ F measured orally
- higher than 100.4˚ F measured rectally
What Can I Do for My Child?
The next time your child has a fever, try some of these techniques to keep your child as comfortable as possible while the natural healing process takes place:
- Dress him or her lightly. Overheating can aggravate a fever, so make sure the bedclothes are light, too.
- Let your child get plenty of rest.
- Serve liquids to replenish moisture lost through perspiration and evaporation.
- Keep your child home from school until the temperature has been normal for 24 hours.
- Don’t force your child to eat, but do encourage your child to eat nutritious foods.
Should I Call a Doctor?
Because a fever could point to any number of illnesses, it’s important to find out what’s causing it. The cause may seem obvious; it may not be. Your child’s doctor is the best person to give you advice on when to call for help regarding a fever. Your child’s age and other symptoms are clues your doctor can investigate to determine the cause of your child’s fever. The American Academy of Pediatrics suggests that you call a doctor if any child older than 6 months has a temperature of 104˚ F and
- refuses fluids or seems too ill to drink adequately
- shows signs of dehydration
- has a seizure
- is feverish for more than three days
If your child’s temperature is higher than 104˚ F, your pediatrician may recommend bathing in lukewarm water. Avoid cold or icy water because it’s uncomfortable, may cause shivering or raise your child’s temperature.
If you’re unsure about a fever, either of our Immediate Care offices in Paintsville or Magoffin County, can help you. We have extended and weekend hours to meet your healthcare needs.
Monday - Friday: 5:00 pm - 9:00 pm
Saturday: 10:00 am - 6:00 pm
Sunday: 12:00 pm - 6:00 pm