What to Do When Your Child Has a Fever

by Delilah Newton | Mar 23, 2022

If you’re like most parents, your anxiety level rises along with your child’s temperature. Fever is a warning sign that your child may have an illness that needs attention. Here are some answers to common questions most parents have about fevers.   

Q: When do I need to worry about a fever?
If your child is older than age 6 months, there’s generally no need to worry about bringing a fever down unless it’s causing your child discomfort. A child who is eating and sleeping well and having playful moments often doesn’t need any fever-lowering treatment.

Q: What is the best type of thermometer to use?
The American Academy of Pediatrics recommends you use a digital thermometer. It’s best to take the temperature rectally for children ages three and younger. A rectal temperature of more than 100.4 degrees is considered a fever. When taken orally, a temperature higher than 99 degrees is deemed a fever.   

Q: When should I call the pediatrician?
You should call your child’s pediatrician in these situations:

  • Age 2 months or younger: Rectal temperature of 100.4 degrees or higher
  • Younger than 2 years: Fever lasts more than 24 hours
  • Age 2 or older: Fever lasts more than 72 hours
Any age: Fever repeatedly goes higher than 104 degrees or is accompanied by other symptoms, such as a seizure, severe sore throat, severe ear pain or headache, unexplained rash, repeated vomiting or diarrhea, unusual sleepiness 
or very fussy behavior
Q: How should I treat my child’s fever?
Keep your child comfortable by dressing them in light clothing, making sure they drink extra fluids and discouraging overexertion. Acetaminophen or ibuprofen will reduce a fever. Ibuprofen should only be given to a baby older than 6 months. For children younger than 2 years old, call the pediatrician or pharmacist to find out how much medicine to give your child. For older children, follow label instructions. Avoid aspirin for children and teens.

CRH Recognized for Excellent Maternal and Infant Care

Columbus Regional Health has been named an INspire Hospital of Distinction for our commitment to infant and maternal health.

INspire, funded by the Indiana Department of Health’s Safety PIN grant, was developed to implement the delivery of best practice care for Hoosier moms and babies and recognize hospitals for excellence in addressing key drivers of infant and maternal health.

CRH earned a Hospital of Distinction recognition based on implementing best practices in six key areas:crh-recognized_rsz

  • Infant safe sleep
  • Breastfeeding
  • Tobacco prevention and cessation
  • Perinatal substance use
  • Obstetric hemorrhage
  • Maternal hypertension

Columbus Regional Health’s commitment to infant and maternal health in the communities served is fueled by the organization’s participation on multidisciplinary teams comprised of medical professionals, public health officials, resource organizations, support groups and passionate residents and volunteers.

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