Fever in children generally stems from viral diseases and this is a finding of the diseases. Temperature rise is related to combating of immune system of the body with organisms. For this reason, measuring body temperature is the best method for understanding whether the child is ill or not and temperature gauge should be available in medicine cabinet. Restoring fever to normal degrees does not mean that disease causing fever is treated. It may require bacterial infections and antibiotic treatment.
In children, it may cause fever, fluid loss and inflammatory convulsion. High temperature causes excessive liquid loss by way of perspiration of the body. If lost liquid is not substituted, renal functions may be adversely affected and chemical balance of the body may be impaired. Seen generally between 1-3 years of age, inflammatory convulsion may occur depending on fever over 39.7 degrees. In case of high temperature that cannot be reduced for this reason, it should be consulted to the doctor urgently.
Causes of Fever
• Infections (influenza, upper respiratory infections, measles, rubella, chicken pox, 5th and 6th disease, mumps, sinusitis, middle ear infection, bronchitis, pneumonia, urinary tract infections, gastroenteritis, meningitis, etc.)
• Vaccines ( especially fever may occur after administration of the combined vaccines)
• Leukemia, lymphoma, and metastatic diseases
• Immunologic diseases
• Inflammatory diseases
• Endocrine diseases
• Metabolic diseases
• Tissue injury (trauma, tooth extraction, burn, etc.)
• Dehydration in the body
• Blood transfusions
• Head traumas
• Biological agents
Measuring Fever In Children
Fever can be measured with (thermometer) or electronic device. Ear, sublingual, armpits and anus are the areas where fever can be measured. Armpit measurements are usually 0.5 º C degrees lower when compared with other measurements.
Fever Limit Values
High pyretic: 40+
How to reduce temperature in children?
If the child has no fever and ill state persists, measuring the fever within 1 hour is a must. If fever is greater than 38º C in babies younger than 3 months, you contact a doctor immediately.
Tremor may occur while fever of the child is rising. Thick clothes lead to further increase of the fever of the child. For this reason, the child should not be dressed with thick clothes and it should not be covered since it is cold. If the child is trembling, it may be covered with a sheet. If fever of the child is more than 39º C, method of dropping this temperature is to have a warm shower. The child can be administered with antipyretic paracetamol for an interval of 4-6 hours. If fever is still over 38º C, dosage range should be taken from 4 to 3. In this case, paracetamol should be used alternatively with a secondary drug. The drugs whose active ingredient is ibuprofen should be used alternatively together with a paracetamol in 3 hours.
In what cases must be consulted to the doctor urgently?
• If the child cannot eat anything or vomit what it has eaten, cries and is tired, the child should be closely monitored.
• If moderate fever (38-39.9) lasts longer than 24 hours and if there is no disease symptom such as runny nose or coughing, it should be found out that from what causes the fever stems from.
• Temperature of the child is 39-40 degrees and does not drop, it should be consulted to the doctor against the risk of fever convulsion. Fever convulsion occurs if fever of the child is higher than normal.
• If fever of the child lasts longer than 2 days in moderate degree and it does not drop even with antipyretic drugs, it should be consulted to the doctor.
Care of the Child with Fever
• Cause of the disease causing fever for maintaining suitable care should be diagnosed. Generally fever has emerged as a result of disease. The ill child should be kept as comfortable as possible until it comes back to normal state.
• All unnecessary clothes should be taken off and only loose pajamas can be left on the child.
• By considering the fact that fever may cause liquid fluid in the body, more drinks should be given to the child more than normal.
• The child with fever has no appetite. If its appetite comes back to normal, it should be gradually fed with easily-digestible and delicious food.