Fever

FEVER
 
 

It's only natural to be concerned when your child develops a fever. But not all fevers are a cause for worry. In fact, many fevers don't need treatment. A fever sometimes appears before any other signs of illness appear. A fever is your body's way of fighting an infection. By activating your child's immune system, a fever can actually shorten your child's illness. Normal temperature is not a specific number. Instead normal temperature usually ranges from 97° to 100.4° Fahrenheit. Body temperature also varies according to time of day, age, and physical activity. It is normal for a child's body temperature to be higher in the late afternoon and evening and to go down in the morning. Pediatricians do not consider a fever significant unless it rises above 100.4°.

Treatment

Treatment is rarely required for a child older than three months who has a mild fever but no other symptoms. Tylenol is usually only needed if your child is uncomfortable; remember a fever has a purpose! Not only does it start your body's immune response, it also keeps your child from playing actively while she's sick and allows her body to rest.

If other symptoms appear along with the fever, you should call your pediatrician. For children younger than three months even a mild fever means you should call your pediatrician right away.

Encourage increased fluids and rest in a child with a fever. Consider your child to be infectious if she has a fever and keep her isolated from other children until she has been fever-free for 24 hours