When to Treat Your Child’s Fever

There is nothing worse than knowing your child is sick & a fever can be downright scary as a new mom, but when should you worry & when should you start to treat the fever?

When to Treat Your Child's Fever

A fever is the body's natural way of fighting of infections for bacteria and viruses. A fever makes the body less favorable for bacteria and virus to replicate allowing the body to fight off existing germs without having to fight off new ones. Generally mild fevers (under 102 for anyone over 6 months old) are a good thing and should be left alone until they become an issue.

A fever over 105 fahrenheit is dangerous and should be treated immediately. A temperature of 105 or higher can cause cell damage in the patient's body. If your child has a fever of 104 degrees fahrenheit or higher that is not responding to treatment you should seek immediate medical attention. Lower fevers are tricky and you must decide whether to treat or let the fever continue.

When to Treat Your Child's Fever at home

If these signs appear with the fever call your child's doctor or seek medical attention:

  • under the age of 3 months with a 100 degree fahrenheit or higher fever.
  • between 3 and 3 months of age with a 101 degree fahrenheit or higher fever.
  • under 6 months of age with a 102 degree fahrenheit or higher fever.
  • Your child has a fever over 102 with two or more listed symptoms:
    • cough
    • sore throat
    • runny or stuffy nose
    • body aches
    • headaches
    • chills
    • fatigue
    • diarrhea
  • Pain while peeing
  • Ear pain
  • When fever does not respond to treatment
  • If the fever lasts for over 3 days

Otherwise, you can treat the fever at home.  For anything under 100 (and over 1 year of age), we don't treat the fever. Lots of fluids and treating any other symptoms they may have, but we try to let the fever run it's course.  For anything above that, the kids normally get pretty uncomfortable so we try to bring it down naturally.

You can always contact the First Nurse in your area to confirm whether you should leave a fever untreated and try to keep your child comfortable, treat the fever at home, or bring them in to Urgent Care (emergency room) if you are unsure. When I had little ones of various ages, I'd often forget in the middle of the night what was acceptable for each & they always gave me the rundown really quick so I could decide what to do.

When to Treat Your Child's FeverChemical fever treatments suppress the immune system while masking the symptoms making it harder for your child's body to fight infection and for you to notice troubling signs of something more than the common cold or flu.

Want to treat your child's fever naturally? Check out the book Treating Fevers Naturally by Meagan Visser!

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