Fevers are the body's defense weapon. They are not to be feared. Giving a Tylenol to bring down a fever is hurting the body's immune system and can cause damage to the body.
First and foremost, LET THE FEVER RUN ITS COURSE. It has a job to do! Bringing down a fever can prolong an illness or infection.
I've heart the phrase, "watch the child NOT the temperature." My thought is to watch both. I've had a nephew go to the doctor with a low temperature but acting very ill. By the time he sat on the table for the nurse to check him out his temperature was at 106.7. Yes, that is correct. She thought her thermometer was broken and got another one. You can imagine the urgency to lower his temperature. He was fine, without any known brain damage. So, always watch both; the child and the temperature. I'm not saying to be in fear of rising temps, but to check if you notice a change in the child, or at least once every hour or so.
Only interfere with a fever if it's causing changes in mental status, inconsolable distress, or severe malaise. If the child is playing with toys, or watching movies, there is no treatment needed. Let the fever be. However, if the child is miserable, crying, and cannot be calmed down then by all means give them some support.
Febrile seizures DO NOT occur because of the high temperature, but from the rapid rise in temperature which comes with certain illnesses. A 103/104 degree temperature is considered normal with certain viruses (Hand-foot-mouth disease, influenza, etc.) Febrile seizures are usually not serious or permanent in children between the ages of 6 months and 3 years.
Need to bring down a fever? Try any of the following:
When to call the doctor:
**There is no need to disturb a sick child to take them to the doctor unless something is abnormal. Sick children need to rest. Let them sleep in your bed, or couch. Put on their favorite movie, and keep them loved and comfortable. The doctor doesn't need to see them every time they are sick.
Elaine Evenhouse is an occupational therapy assistant and natural health advocate.