Any parent would not want their children to catch a fever, especially during their infant days. Toddlers and older kids are easier to treat since they can tell you where does it hurt and you can tell them to sleep or drink a lot of water. But with younger and smaller babies, fever can cause a real scare to first-time mommies and even to experienced mothers.
Scroll down for some helpful tips to know and ease your baby's fever and lessen your own worries.
- Fever, what it is and when will you know your baby has it
The first thing that you have to do is to check your baby's temperature in order to determine if she has a fever or not. The temperature that is considered normal is ranging from 97 to 100.4 degrees Fahrenheit. If your baby is acting in a different way or seems to be uncomfortable, you should immediately check if her temperature is higher than the said range.
There are different causes of fever and it wouldn't hurt if you could distinguish what is the reason of your baby's illness. Viruses can cause acute fevers while fevers that last longer can be because of an infection.
- Lukewarm water bath or sponge
When your baby has a fever, completely avoid bathing her in cold water or using rubbing alcohol on her. Though ice baths appear to be a good way to cool down the fever, it will not work and may be the reason for other health problems. This is because a fever must be brought down slowly instead of reducing it rapidly with the use of cold water. Rubbing alcohol, on the other hand, can cause alcohol poisoning when absorbed by the skin.
- Use lightweight clothes
Ensure to change your baby's clothing and use lightweight fabrics. Avoid extra layers as such will only trap the excess body heat caused by the fever. With trapped body heat, your baby will become too warm and the fever will rise. But if the infant is shivering, you can add extra clothes to prevent chilling.
- Watch out for sweating
When your baby's clothes are completely drenched with sweat, remove and change her clothing right away. Wet garments can be a reason for your baby to catch a chill.
- Use blankets instead of clothes to ease coldness
When your baby starts to shiver, an additional cover will be needed to keep her warm. Lightweight blankets are better than clothing since you can adjust or remove such easily. A heavyweight blanket is a big no-no because it can cause an increased boy temperature.
- Lessen physical activity
The body's internal temperature may continue to increase if your baby will have too many physical activities. Keep your baby at home and relatively calm and quiet.
- Prevent dehydration
Giving your baby extra fluids is essential to fight a fever and prevent dehydration. Babies aged less than six months should only get breastmilk or formulas. For infants who are six months or older, you can supplement milk with minimal amounts of water or natural fruit juice.
- If your baby's temperature is not improving, consider a medication such as acetaminophen
It is always best to consult a doctor before giving any medication to your baby. When the fever of your baby persists even after doing the non-medicinal treatments, call or go to your pediatrician to check what medicine you can give to your child. This should also be done even if your baby has taken a certain fever medicine before.