I’ve recently had the worst nightmare come true, my son ran extremely high fever out of nowhere and the past three days weren’t a bliss.
They were the scariest days of my life, the time of numerous hard decision made and things done.
To draw you the full picture, my son had only two cases of the fever within two and half years of his life, both lasted one day and never passed through the “scarily high” figures.
This time I had to deal with “the stubborn fever” that doesn’t want to drop no matter what you do!
Since we started attending a kindergarten, it’s no brainer he caught the viral infection there but what kind of infection was that? Obviously, it was nowhere around the common cold because the fever was too high and there were no other cold-like symptoms: a runny nose, a sore throat or a cough.
Having shoveled up everything I could find in the Net, it finally hit me that we were dealing with the flu. No wonder, since the flu season is up and running.
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What is the Difference Between Cold and Flu?
Flu Symptoms in Children
Flu in children has an abrupt onset and usually combine two or more of the following symptoms:
- High fever (which is very common and considered the first sign of the flu. It can start suddenly and run as high as 103-104 F, often hard to break and can last 3-4 days.)
- Muscular pains and shivering
- Extreme fatigue and exhaustion (very common and usually starts early)
- Severe headache
- Runny (or stuffy) nose
- Sore throat
- Cough (usually dry and severe)
How to Deal With High Fever in T
Remember, fever is not a sickness, it’s a symptom. Actually, quite a good one. It means that your child’s immune system is fighting the infection or virus that is the real cause of the illness.
Our bodies made smart. They are a self-regulated system that programmed for survival. So sometimes the best option is to stop interfering in the natural processes.
However, this is true only to a certain point. When the child runs a
As a mom of a toddler, I can say it’s terrifying when your baby has a fever. Part of the fear comes from the lost control and inability to influence and quickly change the situation. Sometimes the fever can be stubborn and keep climbing up to the point where you stop thinking rationally.
How often to check the fever?
To keep things under control and be able to make necessary decisions on how to treat your child’s fever fast, you need to take temperature every 15-30 minutes (when there’s a tendency in raising temperature).
When my baby had 104°F, I took his temperature every 10 mins to make sure it doesn’t go over the roof and to be able to urgently change the methods of breaking his fever.
What Thermometer to Use to Take Your Baby’s Temperature?
If you’re sensing your child has a temperature, it’s extremely important to know the accurate number, so in this case, digital thermometers are the best.
I was first using an under-the-arm thermometer and I still think it’s great, but mostly for older children because my toddler hated its cold touch and the time he should have stayed still until I took his temperature. Despite its accuracy, I had to switch to a more comfortable and fast version.
A digital ear thermometer is generally the most accurate one because it measures a fever where the blood flows right from the brain temperature control center. On top of that, it is safe and quick to use and doesn’t bring any discomfort to your baby.
However, sometimes when your baby is sick it might be tricky to place an ear thermometer into your baby’s ear. For this reason, there’s a great innovative option, the so-called Smart Forehead Thermometer.
It’s a little pricier than the ear thermometer but it’s totally worth every penny you spend on it. You can take your baby’s temperature while he is asleep without waking your child or disturbing him because this thermometer uses a noninvasive 2-inches away measurement technology. So no more fuss when taking baby’s temperature!
Here’s when you’ll want to call the doctor:
- 100.4°F — Under 3 months old
- 101°F — 3-6 months old
- 102°F — 6 months or older AND exhibits these symptoms: a cough, a sore throat, a runny or stuffy nose, body aches, headaches, chills, fatigue, and diarrhea.
- 103°F — 6 months or older
8 Tips On How To Break Toddler Fever
1. Make optimal microclimate conditions
If a child has a fever and a runny nose, it is important to ensure coolness (18–20 ° C) and optimum humidity (50–60%) in the nursery. Air the room and put the baby in bed. Wrapping your child with a blanket is dangerous: it can quickly lead to overheating and a heat stroke. If the child is not shivering, dress him lightly, do not cover with thick blankets.
2. Give plenty of fluids
At high temperatures, the body vigorously loses fluid through the skin. Offer your child to drink water as often as possible. This one was an issue with my boy since he’s not very enthusiastic about drinking water. If you have the same problem, make sure to offer any fluid your child likes, for example, warm tea, cranberry juice or any other drink that the baby agrees to drink.
If you want to break the temperature in a child, it is better to drink small portions more often: several teaspoons every 10 minutes. When the baby has
3. Cut down on food
Cutting down on food during the flu is crucial in order not to waste the body’s energy for the digestion of heavy products, thereby over-straining the liver, which plays a leading role in cleaning cells and tissues from toxins. The diet should be moderate and nutrient-dense, easy for digestion.
During high fever, nobody wants to eat, neither adults nor children (especially children!) because their body is too busy to fight off infection. So if your baby has no appetite or refuses to eat, don’t make him do it. Offer some fluid instead.
4. Cut out sugar & dairy
Multiple studies have shown that regular intake of fast carbohydrates (including sugar, fast food, pastry, refined grains,
5. Turn your humidifier off
Humid air is great when your baby has a common cold with all the symptoms, like a runny nose or a cough, but when it comes to high fever, high level of humidity in the room may interfere with the body’s ability to drop the fever naturally. The air in the child’ room should be cool. As for the humidity, try wiping the floor every couple of hours instead of using a humidifier.
6. Fever medicine
If your baby’s temperature is above 102 Fahrenheit (6 months to 3 year-old babies), give your child acetaminophen (for example, Tylenol) or ibuprofen (Advil, Motrin). Read the label carefully for proper dosage. Don’t give aspirin to an infant or toddler. Call the doctor if the fever doesn’t respond to the medication or lasts longer than one day. (Source)
My toddler was really stubborn. He didn’t want to drink any fever medicine at all. It was crazy. I then switched to the form of a rectal suppository.
But what if the fever medicine doesn’t work at all? Read #7.
7. Rubbing with apple cider vinegar
This is probably one of the best methods to break a child’s fever. When nothing else worked, this trick saved me every time! I’m not saying that it will magically drop the temperature off but at least it will make it more bearable for your baby.
First, let’s dive into physiology. What happens when the body temperature rises? Fever is a sign of inflammation in the body. This inflammation releases some chemicals that turn on the immune response and your body’s thermostat, so the temperature rises, say, to 102 Fahrenheit to fight off
However, the perspiration system is blocked to sustain the raised temperature at a certain level in order to kill viruses and bacteria. Instead of this, you get shivers to warm up because your brain thinks you’re too cold. This is a smart natural mechanism our body has to fight inflammation.
And it does sound reasonable, although there are some cases, like with the flu, for example, when the body temperature rises to the extremes and stays like this for 3-5 days. This may lead to various side effects as well as the spasm of the vessels and the seizures. In this case, when there is more harm than benefits in high fever, you should always try to break it off.
When you’re rubbing your baby with apple cider vinegar what it does it basically “draws out” the fever. This works as a perspiration system. Apple cider vinegar evaporates from the surface of the skin fairly quickly. The body releases heat and cools down, which leads to the temperature drop.
How to rub your baby with apple cider vinegar?
Soak a washcloth in diluted apple cider vinegar (1 tablespoon of vinegar to a cup of water) and start rubbing your baby’s body with it. The washcloth should be really wet and the mixture should be dripping from it.
Start with rubbing the creases of the baby’s body: the underarms and the groin. As soon as you rub in the mixture, take a towel and start waving above the baby’s body until the liquid completely evaporates.
Do it with all parts of the body. And yes, your baby will cry, act extremely fussily and beg you to stop. Don’t give up and do everything quickly.
Don’t cover your baby with the blanket after the rubbing. Leave him lying in his underwear, otherwise, the body temperature will
A healthy gut microbiota is extremely essential for strong immune system and the ability of the body to fight off infections. When your child gets sick it’s a great idea to increase his probiotics intake to help his body defeat the bad bacterias and viruses much faster.
9. High doses of vitamin D, zinc and vitamin C combined with Echinacea
Clearly, if your baby got sick his immune system needs a boost. There’s nothing better for helping the body fight the infection than the combination of these three essential nutrients with echinacea, known to improve stamina.
“Vitamin D, vitamin C, zinc, and Echinacea have pivotal roles of three main immunoreactive clusters (physical barriers, innate and adaptive immunity) in terms of prevention and treatment (shortening the duration and/or lessening the severity of symptoms) of common colds.”
Talk to the pediatrician to find the right dose for your child.
When to Call a Doctor?
Flu can be tricky. You may see that the symptoms are improving and your baby feels better, next thing you know he’s exhausted and falling asleep in the middle of the play, not to mention the scariest period with the high fever when you should constantly keep an ear to the ground.
So when is it important to see the doctor ASAP?
- Your child is drinking twice less fluid as usual
- The toddler pees fewer than 3 times in 24 hours
- The child is extremely fatigued, doesn’t want to eat/drink/play, doesn’t want to communicate
- When the symptoms improve and then suddenly become worse
- When the symptoms are not improving after 4 days