To medicate or not?

Lesa - posted on 02/08/2011 ( 34 moms have responded )

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At what temperature do you give your children fever reducing medicine? Or do you let their bodies fight off the infection without giving medication at all? Is there a temperature that is dangerous for the child? My children have had a cough, runny nose and fevers of 39.3 Celsius and 40.1 Celsius. I was concerned about whether or not this temperature was too high and gave them Advil to bring down the fever. What would you do?

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Jackie - posted on 02/08/2011

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@ Maria - I was recently told my daughter's pediatrician that while 105 should be cause for concern, they don't REALLY get worried about bodily functions until 106. Although, 105 is awfully close to 106 so I would be freaking out either way!

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105 definitely needs brought down, but what happens when you get your skin too cold? The body heats up more trying to get you warm again. Now, if they do that kind of thing in the hospital? Fine. The medical professionals (hopefully) know what they are doing, but if a dose of Tylenol and a cool washcloth doesn't start dropping the temp..... the hospital is where they need to be anyway. :)

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Yeah, 104 would get meds for sure. One of my girls has spiked a 105 on 2 seperate occasions. The first time freaked me out a bit, but after Tylenol and a cool washcloth it was down to a much nicer 103.

NEVER stick a feverish kid in an ice cold bath. Lukewarm if anything or you'll shock their system and make the fever worse.

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Sharon - posted on 02/09/2011

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Its terrible of me - but fever seems to bring a lot of pain for me & my kids. Skin hurts, joints hurt, headaches, I can't stand to deal with that so why should they?

If they're just mildly achy - they barely complain and I don't dose them. - they'll just ask to go to bed early. But I'll check them through the night and when they're really whiney and really uncomfortable I'll dose them. IF they get to that stage.

Tia Melissa - posted on 02/09/2011

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I give my kids a NSAID if the fever runs high, they are listless or cannot rest because of the fever/discomfort. If it's a low grade fever and they're still up & about, I let it be so they can fight off whatever it is.

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Or in my case 39 degrees and convulsing. I wouldn't risk not doing anything with a temp over 39 it's to risky every kid handles temps different.

Stifler's - posted on 02/08/2011

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I give him Panadol if he's whingeing, appears to be in pain and has a fever. I'd rather medicate than have my kid in pain.

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With my daughter she will hit 39 before i give panadole. For my boys i give them panadole when they hit 38.5 because the oldest has had febrile convulsions and i'm not gunna risk it happening again so the wuicker i do something about it the less likely he is to get them.

Bonnie - posted on 02/08/2011

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Lesa, I probably wouldn't bother with the ER, UNLESS there are other symptoms they are having that are worrying you. I took my boys as I said on Friday. I spent 5 hours there to find that all they did after they checked him and made us wait a heck of a lot in between was give him Advil and then see if it helped. I would say if it goes higher than 40 celcius, yes take them in.

Jennifer - posted on 02/08/2011

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my gauge on whether i should give meds is the babe's mood, for the most part. if they have a fever, but seem to be doing okay then i won't give anything and i'll allow the body to do what its trying to do. if they seem uncomfortable or lethargic then i will give meds.

Jodi - posted on 02/08/2011

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I allow a fever up to around 39 and that is it, I then medicate to bring it down. Our immune system does actually NEED a fever for it to work at its most efficient, but anything beyond about 39 begins to get dangerous. Over 40 needs medical attention, especially if it doesn't come down with medications. So you really don't want to let it get over 39. That's always been my doctor's advice, and it has also been in a lot of things I have read.



Like Deanna, I also medicate at night to help them sleep (we need good sleep too), or if they have a flu and it includes the aches and pains, I will medicate to give them some relief.

Jackie - posted on 02/08/2011

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104 degrees is MOST DEF high enough for meds and even a trip to the Doc.

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We normally only medicate at night when and as needed. During the day they can usually tough it out as fevers are a bodies natural fighter against infections/virus's.

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TERESA: For real i thought if the fever was 105 ( or higher if possible) that you need to try and cool the body down immediately because then its just shutting down and is gonna do damage to the body ( kidneys and such) and the brain.????

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I don't know the Celsius conversion, but I rarely medicate a fever that is 102F or under. I may medicate the other symptoms (headache and such) and will give something at bedtime (since their fevers tend to spike at night), but otherwise we just ride it out.

Rosie - posted on 02/08/2011

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it depends on how old the child is, and what the temp is. if it's a toddler aged child i have been told by both my doctor and my chiropractor (who sees my kids) that a fever of 103 (39.4 C) is when you should give medication. also if they seem like they are in pain i ALWAYS give medication. if their head hurts but temp is lower, i will still give. i cannot let my child just sit there in pain.
however with fever you really do need to let your childs body do it's work. they have a fever for a reason, it's the body's way of getting rid of the invader. :)

Becky - posted on 02/08/2011

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I usually don't medicate for a fever under 101 unless they seem sick or uncomfortable. If it's 101 or higher, then I do give Advil.

Jenni - posted on 02/08/2011

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Ok so how ironic is this... I wrote my OP to this thread this morning saying my son is 2 1/2 and only had a fever once...

well this morning he only ate his oatmeal and when I asked him to eat his yoghurt and banana he kept telling me "I can't eat". I noticed he did seem a little lethargic and kept yawning but I didn't think anything of it. I made him lunch and he wouldn't touch it. Then he started getting really whinney and peed his pants (we're in the midst of potty training). I asked him if he felt sick and he said yes. His lips looked red and chapped and he seemed to be crying for no particular reason. Felt his forhead and he felt a bit warm. Took his temp 100.5 F. Then he just laid on the couch with that glazed over sick look. So I gave him some advil.... I did... and sent him to bed for his nap. I'm a bit worried because when I carried him to bed he felt even hotter than when I took his temp.

So I guess my answer is yes I did give him advil. I think i'll give him more before bed tonight if it persists after a cool bath. I know last time I had to give him some before bed because his temp gets worse at night and he kept waking up crying in pain. Once I gave it to him he slept the rest of the night.

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Well then i would just make sure that she is getting plenty of fluids and maybe pedialyte and gatorade helps alot.

Lesa - posted on 02/08/2011

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Yes, that is exactly what is going on. My son is on the mend. His fever was the higher one and he is now back to normal except for his cough but my daughter's fever keeps lingering around 39 C but she is not listless or anything. She is playing and talking and such. The only other thing that concerns me is that she is not eating. I know a fever is supposed to help fight the infection in their bodies but I am a bit concerned at this high temp. I don't medicate them during the day, only at night because that is when the fever is the highest.

Bonnie - posted on 02/08/2011

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I am going through the same thing with my boys right now Lesa, and I have been for the past few days. I always give them Tylenol or Advil even when the fever is low to try to prevent it from rising. Sometimes it works sometimes it doesn't. It seems that with the bug they have this time the fever does not want to leave. I had taken them in to get checked on Friday because my younger son's temperature was at 40.3. They have him Advil there and had us wait 30 minutes afterwards to see if it did anything. It did drop a fair bit, but since then it just rises then drops, then rises again, especially by the evening.

[deleted account]

I dont know what the temperatures you gave are cuz im not good at converting celsius to farenheit but if its a hundred i would give medicine if it gets higher than that yes definitely and i would probably be on my way to the doctors. 105 temperature is every very dangerous and if i wasnt at the hospital then she would have medicine and be stuck in an ice cold bath to try and bring her temperature down. But if its 100 i would give medicine and then a cool towel on her head to try and lower her temp down. But yea im all for letting nature takes its course to a certain extend but i am definitely all for medication i wouldnt want to take a chance. but yea 105 is beyond dangerous.

Lesa - posted on 02/08/2011

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Thanks! I gave them Advil last night and it brought the fever down so far. They seem to be fine during the day, just a little clingy and coughing but otherwise acting like themselves. Not sure if I should call a doctor though. Here in New Brunswick, we have clinics or the ER. It usually takes awhile to get into the doctor.

Jenni - posted on 02/08/2011

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My son is 2 1/2 and only ran a fever once. My daughter is 9 months and has only had the odd cold with no fever. I have to be doubled over in pain before I even take an extra strength tylenol. I believe it's good to let your body fight off illness as much as possible. I think I can count on one hand the number of times I gave my children tylenol or advil. The odd time for teething pain. I never give tylenol after immunization, although the nurse always pressures me to. My children have never seemed ill after an immunization. When my son did run a fever of 100 F (not sure about the conversion but it is a low grade) I was panicky because my son had never run one before. He seemed awfully sick to me so I gave him tylenol until his fever went down, about 24 hours.

You could try cool baths and a cool cloth on the forehead. I'm pretty sure a tylenol or advil once in awhile isn't going to cause any harm.

Just looked up the conversion. 40.1 is very high. A fever of 40.5 should be brought down immediately by sponging, fanning and placed in a cool place and then taken to the ER.

Katherine - posted on 02/08/2011

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At 100.3F I give meds because my kids will spike in an instant. I also put in a call to the on call doc.

Amanda - posted on 02/08/2011

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A tempature of 39.4C or higher needs medication and if it does not go down within an hour of taking medication, a doctor should be called.

Tara - posted on 02/08/2011

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I'm a believer in letting nature do it's thing. A fever is natures way of killing off viruses and germs that invade our bodies, as is diarrhea. Now that said, I would not allow a fever to spike higher than 39 degrees for more than an hour or two before I medicate it.
As usually I only medicate at night so they can get a better sleep.
As well any fever that lasts more than 24-36 hours is something I would be calling my doc about just to be sure that it's not something more serious than a minor infection.

Sarah - posted on 02/08/2011

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If my girls have a temperature, I'll give them Calpol. I don't like to dish it out very often, but if they're clearly not well, then I think well I would take an aspirin if it was me, so why shouldn't they get some medicine. :)

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