I want to share these ways to reduce fever in your baby because I know how scary it is to feel like you don’t know how to break a baby fever. It doesn’t matter if you are trying to help them get rid of a cold quickly or trying to help them reduce a fever, we just want them to feel better.
When our kids aren’t feeling well, we want to do everything we can, so today we are talking about how to bring down baby fevers.
We have four kids, and I think it is safe to say that one of them has a stuffy nose at all times, not to mention fevers, strep throat, ear infections or the flu! (Yes, we have had all of those this year).
Just like we give them foods to soothe their sore throats, when a child has a low or high grade fever, we want to help.
When I feel that they may have a fever, I take their rectal temperature. This is important because if you have to call the doctor for medical advice, they will want to have an accurate reading of the child’s temperature. Remember that just guessing your child’s body temperature is not going to give the doctor the most accurate information to determine how to break infant fever.
This is usually followed by a call to my mom, a nurse, to ask: “Do I need to call the pediatrician?” (LOL- the beauty of having a nurse in the family!)
Do I need to call a doctor about our baby’s fever?
If you meet the following criteria… YOU NEED TO CALL A DOCTOR:
- If your child is younger than three months.
- If your baby is 3 to 5 months old the baby’s temperature is 101 degrees or higher. (High fevers in children can be a sign of a bacterial infection & they can lead to febrile seizures).
- If your baby is 6 months old and has a temperature of 102 or higher.
- If your baby’s temperature has been there for several days in a row.
- Has signs of dehydration such as a reduced number of wet diapers.
Go to the emergency room fever is accompanied by other symptoms such as trouble breathing, discoloration of the skin (purple/blue)/
If I don’t fall into one of those categories, I usually try to handle it at home. As soon as I feel our kids starting to heat up, I grab my thermometer. I used to just take a guess, but my mom is a nurse and she always reminds me that the doctor will ask for the exact number… so I try to take their temperature as soon as I’m concerned.
How Do I Get an Accurate Reading?
If your baby or toddler is young, check their temperature using a rectal thermometer. I know – no one likes this, but your doctor will be grateful that you have the most accurate reading.
What can I do to reduce a baby’s fever?
When your child is too young to take oral liquid medication (or if they won’t take it), it is important to have some alternatives.
5 Ways to Reduce a Fever
NOTE: I am certainly not a doctor (I am a teacher, mother, and play therapist), so be sure to check with your doctor if your child has a fever.
1-Use a Suppository if your baby is over 6 months old
If your baby will not take oral medication (I’ve had my fair share of our babies spitting it right back out), a suppository (like FeverAll) may work. Acetaminophen “Tylenol” is one of the most recommended fever reducing nonprescription medications by healthcare professionals.
2- A luke-warm bath is helpful.
The water will evaporate from her skin and cool her don (bringing her temperature down).
Do not use cold water, because you do not want them to get a chill or shiver (this causes their temperature to rise).
Do not use hot water, either. Make it “just right”. As the lukewarm water begins to evaporate from your baby’s skin, it will cool her body & lower her temperature.
3. Offer frozen treats and extra fluids to toddlers.
You are cooling the body from the inside out with cool fluids and foods. Our kids love popsicles when they are sick (and old enough to eat them). Ice cream is great, too, for children old enough.
Even yogurt is a good solution if your baby will eat it. I like to give our kids these frozen greek yogurt pops that I make.
4. How to Dress Baby With Fever At Night
The rule of thumb is to put them in something similar to what you are wearing.
Keep them in normal clothes for that season. I would offer LOTS of snuggles to keep them warm, but you don’t want to put them in extra layers or too light of clothing for the season, as both can cause the child’s fever to increase.
You may also want to use a fan, but do not blow it directly onto your child, but keep it in the room to avoid the room getting stuffy or hot. You do not want your child to be hot or cold.
5. Give your child lots of hugs
Hug them, hold them, snuggle them. When our firstborn son was only an infant, I read that a mother’s touch has a similar effect as medication. Hugging even improves their immune system. So just rock your baby, sing to your baby, rub your baby’s head. Do all of the things that come so naturally to us. Babies don’t keep, so just try to be there for your baby while you can…
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