The Best Way Of Child Fever Relief
It’s two am, you’ve just been woken from a sound sleep to the screams of your four year old in the room next door. Heart pumping you jump out of bed and are at her side in a flash. She is sitting in bed face flushed , eyes streaming, drenched in sweat, and a check of her temperature confirms she has a fever.
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Best Way Of Child Fever Relief
You grab the Tylenol and get it down her, hoping the whole family, now all wakened, will be able to get back to sleep.
In the morning she is still unwell – you race to the doctor’s office and come out with a prescription for antibiotics even though the doctor is pretty certain your child has a viral infection, not a bacterial one.
Child Fever Panic!
You aren’t sure what to do – you know antibiotics only treat bacterial infections, and this prescription has been given to you as a precaution, just in case your child develops a bacterial infection secondary to the viral one.
You know over-prescription of antibiotics are responsible for the advent of strains of superbugs that are increasingly resistant to treatment. Nor do you want to give your child a drug that they don’t really need right at this moment, especially as antibiotics kill the healthy bacteria that live in the lining of your intestine. This can result in a nasty case of diarrhea and more misery. What to do???
When To Consult Your Doctor
- Your child’s temperature is above 103 degrees Fahrenheit and does not respond to fever lowering treatments
- Your child is confused or has lost consciousness
- Your child persisyently complains of a headache and a stiff neck, along with a fever
- Your child has rolling eyes or body twitching
- Your child is an infant under six weeks old
- Your Relationship With Your Doctor
If you visit your doctor, leave the final diagnosis to him or her, but walk in armed with a little knowledge to help and guide you to ask your doctor relevant questions.
If you have a sympathetic physician who listens to his / her patients they will invite discussion. However, if a few questions from you provokes a patronizing or worse still, an aggressive reply, you may decide it is best to end this particular doctor / patient relationship and ask your friends about their doctor, to help you find a physician who will provide you and your family better care.
What Is A Fever?
Fevers commonly accompany many childhood illnesses. Our body temperature rises in response to substances released by viruses and bacteria to help our body’s immune system to destroy them.
In the case of a child fever the fever acts as a defense mechanism for your child’s body to fight the infection. The child fever is not the disease itself. A fever, “acts as a strong vital sign that the immune system is doing its job,” says May Bove N.D. in her book, ‘Encyclopedia of Natural Healing for Children and Infants”.
In her book, May Bove goes on to say, “For a small minority of children, high fevers can cause febrile seizures. These are seldom associated with brain damage although they can be frightening to the parent. They are most common in babies and children up to the age of three and seldom occur after the age of five”.
Managing Child Fever
A child with a strong immune system will throw off a child fever with relative ease; however, these practices, recommended by May Bove, will greatly support your child when they are running a temperature:
For a child fever of under 101 degrees Fahrenheit, give your child plenty of fluids, such as water, diluted fruit juices and herbal teas. This supports, rather than suppresses, the fever and your child’s immune system and avoids dehydration.
For a child fever of over 101 degrees Fahrenheit give warm fluids and herbs which promote sweating. Coll your child with tepid sponge baths.
With any child fever keep food to a minimum. While the body fights infection with a fever it cannot spare energy to digest food. You will find the child won’t want to eat anyway.
Hydrating your child’s body during a fever remains the top priority. Give a variety of the following fluids which will also nourish your child’s body during the fever:
- Diluted fruit juice
- Vegetable juices
- Vegetable broths
- Miso broth
- Honey and lemon water
- Herbal teas
What To Do When the Child Fever Subsides
As your child feels better and their temperature begins to lower, you will see their appetite will return. When that occurs, you can give them the following:
- Broths and soups
- Cooked vegetables
- Brown rice
- Raw vegetable sticks
- A little chicken, legumes, nuts and seeds – added at first to soups
- Lightly boiled eggs and whole grain toast
- BUT remember to keep up with fluids!
- Stay away from giving your child dairy, sugar, even wheat until they are quite well recovered.
Useful Herbs For Child Fever
Yarrow – as a hot tea, in a warm bath, or with apple cider vinegar added as a foot wrap. This herb maintains the fever but assists keeping the temperature from rising too high. For a tea, add peppermint to improve the flavor.
Elder Flower – use in the same manner as described above for Yarrow. This herb promotes sweat and combines well with Yarrow.
Chamomile – Helps reduce the fever, stimulates the immune response, and helps the child to relax, rest and sleep
Garlic – Rub on your child’s feet with a little olive oil before bed to help slowly stabilize the fever during the night
Other Useful Treatments
Use the following essential oils, putting 4 to 6 drops into a tepid sponge bath or foot bath, or added to a massage oil which you can then rub on your child’s feet, and back of the neck and shoulders:
- Tea Tree
These essential oils promote sweating and resolve the fever, while the following oils cool the body and reduce the risk of febrile seizures:
Give Vitamin C, 500mg – 1000mg every 2 hours to fight both viral and bacterial infections
A child fever can certainly give parents a fright. But armed with a little knowledge you can manage most fevers at home and help resolve them relatively easily.
Educate yourself and you will gradually develop the confidence to provide the appropriate nursing care your child needs to get better in a relatively short space of time.