Managing Fever in Children

Watching your child struggle with fever is an ordeal for any parent, and it’s normal to want to manage fever as effectively as possible.  The American Academy of Pediatrics recognizes a low-grade fever as a sign that your child’s immune system is going its job and fighting off infection.

Fever is defined if rectal, ear or forehead temperature is 100.4 degrees F or greater. Treat with rest and with plenty of age appropriate fluids. For fevers 100 – 102 degrees F, medication is rarely needed as the fever doesn’t typically cause discomfort.

Fever Medication

Often when fevers are above 102 degrees F your child will become uncomfortable, and medication can be used. Give acetaminophen OR ibuprofen, using dosing tables available on the Youth Clinic website. Do not use aspirin. The Youth Clinic does not recommend alternating doses of ibuprofen and acetaminophen. The goal of the medication is to bring the temperature down to a comfortable level.

Schedule an Appointment with Your Provider If…

  • Your child’s fever reaches 105 degrees
  • Your child has had a fever of 100.4 degrees F or greater for 72 hours
  • Your child looks or acts very sick
  • Your child develops serious symptoms such as trouble breathing