Your baby has fever? As concerning as it might be, especially for new parents, there is no need to get panicked. Infant fever is quite common and in most cases you can treat it at home without rushing to the doctor.
What can be considered high fever in infants?
Normal baby body temperature should be below 99.68 °F (37.6 °C). Anything beyond that is considered fever. However, babies’ body tend to get along with relatively high temperature to the extent that 104 °F (40 °C) in an infant is the equivalent of 101.3 °F (38.5 °C) in an adult.
When should you consult your doctor?
The following cases demand professional medical intervention:
- When your baby has fever that exceeds 105.8 °F (41°C).
- A fever over 102.2 °F (39 °C) that lasts more than three days and does not respond to drugs. This condition may indicate a bacterial infection.
- Your baby’s skin is covered with a rash in the form of small red dots.
- Your baby’s mouth is dry and her eyes have no tears, especially if she also suffers from multiple vomiting or diarrhea.
- In cases of diarrhea containing blood.
- Babies who get chronic medication, such as steroids, or those who suffer from cancer, heart disease, diabetes, and other chronic diseases are required to be examined by a physician for any fever.
- As a rule of thumb, when your baby has fever, her overall condition is the most important factor: a baby with no fever who breathes heavily, vomits many times, is very pale, sleepy or apathetic should cause much more concern than a baby with high fever who does not suffer from these symptoms.
Home remedies for baby fever
Make sure the temperature in your baby’s room is not too hot (71.6 °F or 22 °C is just fine). Dress her in light clothes and don’t cover her with a blanket. Many parents tend to dress up babies in unnecessary layers of clothing even in high summer, which can increase their body’s temperature.
It is important to know that cold temperature does not make a disease more severe. On the contrary, a room that is over heated can worsen your baby’s condition as bacteria are known to multiply at a much faster rate in a hot environment.
A lukewarm bath three to four times a day can be very helpful. You can also cover your baby with a towel dipped in lukewarm water. Avoid cold water as it may cause her to shiver and shivering will raise her fever.
Antipyretic drugs are highly effective, but you must consult a pharmacist or your doctor regarding the exact type of drug you should use and the right dosage.
A few final words
If a baby has fever, it is usually a sign that she is suffering from another thing as the fever itself is not a disease. It can be a viral or a bacterial infection or even a result of something as minor as teething. In any case, you have no reason to worry too much, just be alert to any change in your child’s condition that may require consulting a pediatrician.