Toddler Fevers: 5 Things To Do

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Flickr photo by Andres Rueda

My 2-year-old son was diagnosed with an ear infection on a Monday and we were sent on our way with a strawberry-tasting antibiotic I would sneak into his favorite yogurt drinks for the next 10 days. He was on his way to getting better, right? Wrong. My little man spiked 105.1 fever. After panicking for five seconds, I got myself moving. 

Here's what my pediatrician told me to do if my toddler got a fever higher than 103:

1. Administer Motrin.

2. Call your Ped (yes, even after hours -- leave a message with the answering service).

3. Run a bath. A luke warm bath. You might think cold, but that will cause your child to shiver and shivering will raise the fever.

4. After the bath, dress the child in a diaper/training pants/undies and a loose fitting T-shirt. Take his temp again. If he's still over 103 after the medication and bath, get to the ER -- just go.

5. Something else to try that worked for us: Wrap bags of frozen veggies in dish towels and place them on the child's back, between his legs and under his arm pits. 

High fevers are SCARY! What was the highest fever your child had? How did you deal with it? 


This is one mom's experience, please consult with your doctor.


doctor visits, health

21 Comments

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MamaT... MamaToLucas

What terrible misinformation. There is no reason to go to the ER (OR give fever reducers, for that matter) unless the child is showing other signs, such as uncharacteristic lethargy (more than would be expected from just being sick), non-responsiveness, limpness, or something that you know is just "off."
Fevers are the body's way of fighting off infection. People (including children) with fevers should be kept warm and hydrated. That is all. 103 is a ridiculous number to give as a mandatory reason to go to the ER. Every child responds differently to fever. You have to know your child--yes, some children will have a febrile seizure (almost always harmless, but still scary) at 103, but some are fine as high as 106!!
Please, CafeMom bloggers...your readers deserve more accurate information.

leberly leberly

I think you are wrong. however everyone handles fevers differently.

jerem... jeremysmom04

http://theatlasoflife.com/2010/04/09/why-reducing-fevers-is-lame/

I agree completely with MamaToLucas. Reducing fever generally only prolongs the illness.

I would also do a little research on ear infections. Studies have shown that antibiotics for ear infections are generally only effective for children younger than two with both ears infected.

nonmember avatar doraEX

Actually, this advice is the same an EMT gave me three nights ago when my daughter was 104.3 And babycenter.com recommends the same thing.

auror... aurorabunny

Sorry I don't care what anyone says, if my kid gets a 105 fever, we're going to the ER.

Ninja... NinjaMomma

It used to scare me, but it's not how high it goes that is necessarily dangerous, but how quickly it goes up. A temp that gradually goes up, or stays rather high isn't as dangerous as one that spikes quickly. Fevers are good for the body and are part of our defense. Just be attentive and monitor it and try to keep the child comfortable. My son would get rather high fevers whenever he would get sick. If I just watched it and let him sleep, the fever would break after it's job was done and when ds awoke he would be fine. Cut the duration of his illnesses down quite a bit.

MamaT... MamaToLucas

Haha, yeah, because babycenter.com is the leading expert in ANYTHING.
And 105 is different than 103.

auror... aurorabunny

Baby center is a load of crap, and normally I think ERs are too, but I worry more about seizures since my son has autism and also he is just not a "high fever" kid, he's never even hit 102 and he's almost 4, so still I would go.

palem... palemoon21

I don't rush my kids to the ER if their fevers spike like that without any other symptoms, even with an ear infection. I think that the "dr's" will do the same thing I can do in the comfort of their home. Hydrate, keep lukewarm, monitor and tend to....however, due to my youngest DD's birth defect if she gets ANY form of fever I have to monitor her CLOSELY and if she does go above 104...we do choose medical intervention over staying at home.

akhlass akhlass

I agree with the advice and instructions in this post. For moms who are very experienced, maybe they wouldn't bring their child to the ER with 105 fever, but who wants to take a chance? I think that using the "cooling methods" and a fever reducer first, and then if the fever is still high, bringing your child to the ER is smart. It's better to be safe, than sorry especially if you may not have that much medical knowledge or you are unsure about what is happening. There are many examples & cases where a parent waited too long to bring their child to the ER and the child is dead or in a coma because they waited. Dehydration and feveral seizures are very dangerous. Why not seek medical care?

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