A baby less than 6 months old should be seen by a doctor if the fever is 101° F or higher. Many doctors don't consider a fever in children a real worry until it is 103° or higher. Lower than that, the fever is actually beneficial since it kills things that invade the body.
But, you can do some things to help bring a fever down:
- Dress in lightweight clothing or remove clothing to allow heat loss through the skin. Socks, slippers, or a hat should not be used because heat escapes through the head and feet.
- Use a lightweight blanket if you feel cold or if you are shivering, and leave the feet exposed.
- Keep quiet (still) since activity increases body temperature.
- Get extra fluids to prevent dehydration or extra loss of water, such as water, iced drinks, popsicles, Jello, or juices. (Fluids without added sugar are best, but use whatever you have on hand because dehydration can occur very quickly.)
If the fever is really high, you can sponge in a few inches of lukewarm (not cold!) bath water. Don't use alcohol instead of water.
You may want to give your child Children's Advil to reduce the fever and help with any pain - but never aspirin. Aspirin with fevers can bring on Reye's syndrome, a serious and potentially deadly disorder in children up to 16 or so.
If you want to avoid any medication, garlic will bring a fever down. Put enough fresh cloves of garlic into a blender to make a paste that will spread about 1/4" thick on gauze. Put a little olive oil on the feet so the garlic will not irritate them. Apply the garlic pads to the soles of both feet and keep them in place by wrapping with gauze. Don't cover the soles of the feel entirely so heat can still escape. Leave the pads on overnight.
Ani from Ontario, Canada, says that egg whites, minced onions, or minced potatoes will lower a high temperature within minutes. Soak two washcloths in egg whites and put them on the soles of the feet, then cover the feet with socks or gauze wrap. The egg whites instantaneously start to draw the temperature down from the brain to the feet. If you have no eggs, minced onions or minced potatoes can be applied to the feet instead, although egg whites are the faster method.
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