Fever in children
PEDIATRIC DOSAGES FOR FEVER MEDICATIONS
ACETOMENOPHEN (Tylenol) given every 4-6 hours. Max 4 doses in 24 hours
1Tsp = 5ml, 1/4 tsp is 1.2ml, 1/2 tsp is 2.5ml, and 3/4 tsp is 3.7ml
IBUPROFEN dosages (Motrin, Advil) given every 6-8 hours
Do not take these Maximum doses for a long time.)
These two medications can be given with most antibiotics and cough/cold meds that do not already have fever medicine in them.
I do not recommend Ibuprofen with Chicken Pox. Stay with Tylenol.
Some health personel recommend giving both Tylenol and Motrin simultaneously and give both alternating them every 3 hours. I do not feel this controls fever better and the main purpose of this is to keep you busy. I recommend you give one or the other since alternating both gives too many of these chemicals to the liver and can cause liver damage. Fever does not hurt the child unless it goes up to 107. This only occurs if you leave your child in the car in the summer and get heat stroke and this does not occur with infections. Fever kills the germs, not the child. If we put the dish of bacteria or viruses and heat them up to 104, then they die. Fever mobilizes our white cells to fight off the infection and has been around since the caveman days to help us. It is God's way of helping us fight off the infection.
A child can have a convulsion from the fever and occurs 1/1000 children. But it happens at 101 as well as 104 degrees. And the short febrile convulsion does not hurt the child, although it has to be the most frightening thing a parent can watch. The convulsion does not harm the child and is less than 5 minutes. Call 911 if it goes past 5 minutes and always have the child checked after a convulsion.
Also remember that teething does not cause fever. Many infants in the old days had kidney infections or other infections that the doctors did not understand babies have, so they told the parents it was teething. NOT. Get the baby seen by the doctor for any fevers.
Take the temperature rectal or under the arm. The temperature instruments in the ear are not consistently reliable and I do not recommend them. Actually the pacifier that measures the temperature is fairly accurate within 1/2 degree and is cheaper. But the most accurate is in the bottom. I haven't seen anyone hurt the rectum yet. Just insert it till the silver part is inside. The temperatures I recommend as the cutoff for fever: Axillary (under the arm) is 100 degrees. This is easy to remember as the century 100 and anything in the 90s is OK and above 100 is trouble. How high does not matter. 101 can indicate just as serious infection as 105. Rectal temperature fever cutoff is 101 degrees. This is easy to remember in boys because their penis makes the number one! Girls you just have to remember. Do not add or subtract cause it gets too confusing as to who has adjusted the reading. Just tell us what you read and where you took it. If they feel "burning hot" then they have a high fever and you really do not have to take it since how high does not damage them. Just give fever medication and call for an appointment. For infants below 2 months old, bring them in to see the doctor immediately in the next 2 hours; clinic or ER. If 2 months to 2 years, get them seen in the first 24 hours. If over 2 years and they are acting normal, you can wait a few days, but if they are lying around, and lethargic, or crying in pain, bring them in soon.
Dr. Roger Knapp MD
(This is medically based common sense advise of mine.)