Fever is most often seen in connection with an infection. It’s a natural reaction by our immune system, which controls a sort of thermostat in the brain.
What is fever?
Fever is a body temperature over 38 degrees centigrade. It can be measured most accurately in the rectum. Normal human body temperature is between 37-37.7 degrees, and it is usually highest in the evening.
Fever is not dangerous, but helps the body fight an infection.
Children often experience a rapid temperature rises. Going from normal to a temperature of 40 degrees in just a few hours is quite normal. Children generally have a higher temperature than adults.
A fever is usually accompanied by rapid pulse and breathing, general discomfort and tiredness.
How you can help your child?
A fever over 40.5 - 41 degrees centigrade is usually due to overheating because the body cannot get rid of its heat. Overheating can be dangerous and should be avoided. You should undress your child.
Avoid using a duvet, just use the duvet cover or a sheet instead. Give them plenty to drink. Avoid too much warmth. Open a window, for example. If your child is in discomfort, Panodil can help. Panodil will reduce their temperature and relieve any pain, but will not help your child get well faster. If your child can cope well with a fever, Panodil is unnecessary. A child with fever should be checked on at least once during the night.
What to look out for?
A fever is not dangerous, and there is little connection between high temperature and the severity of an illness. A good way of checking your child’s status is to look at their general condition. Is your child playing, or lying listlessly on the sofa? Is he/she drinking and urinating normally? Is he/she alert, making good contact with you, or does your child seem remote and listless?
When to contact your doctor?
Fever rarely indicates a severe infection such as meningitis or inflammation of the kidney. So your child should only be seen by a doctor if:
- the child is very poorly
- it is hard to get contact with them
- the child has refused to drink for more than half a day, despite being offered small sips every 10 minutes.
- the child is less than 3 months old and has a fethey red spots that do not disappear when you press the bottom of a glass against their skin