Fever in toddlers
Fever in toddlers is a frequent problem happened, and not the least we as parents easy to panic so directly to the pediatrician and hope for a speedy recovery. Actually, if we knew what it was fever and how to overcome them, not always we have to go the doctor.
What is Fever
Fever is a condition when your toddler's body temperature reached more than 38C and the process consists of three phases,
- Shivering until body temperature reaches its peak
- The temperature settled
- The temperature decreases.
Fever is also a mechanism of the body to fight disease, due to high body temperatures can kill the virus (which can be increased in number at low body temperature). So better not to treat low grade fever.
Increase in body temperature caused by the circulation of small molecules in our body called pyrogens (substances trigger the heat). This substance is also useful to mobilize white blood cells to the site of infection and the occurrence of this increase could be due to pyrogens,
- Non-infections, such as allergies, teething, malignancy, autoimmune (an error "program" in the body where the organs of our body alleged to be "enemy" and attacked by our own immune system.
Between the two causes above, the fever is more often caused by infection, can by bacteria or viruses and in most cases (more than 75%), infection is caused by a virus, especially the baby and toddlers.
So it can be concluded that the fever is not a disease but a symptom, and symptoms will not disappear if the cause is not addressed. So when the child is given febrifuge, in a few hours the heat up again, this happens because the hot-lowering drugs do not cure the illness.
Then what is the use fever-lowering medication? the point is to lower body temperature, so that body temperature does not continue to increase and so that children feel comfortable (pain killer), but not to normalize body temperature! Once again please remember - fever is not an illness - symptoms and fever are the most important - look for the cause.
If the cause is a viral infection such as colds or flu, the remedy is simply time. Do not give antibiotics because antibiotics can not kill the virus
How to overcome fever
-Drinking a lot because fever can cause dehydration.
-Compress the child with warm water.
-Give febrifuge, acetaminophen or paracetamol or paracetol, tylenol, according to dose. When febrifuge given? When the temperature is above 38.5C, or if the child is uncomfortable. Let's not give fever medicine if the heat is too high (below 38.5C).
The principle in dealing with fever
Below are the things we should do if the child has a fever as recommended by the Mayo Clinic USA and AAP) American Academy of Pediatrics):
- Find out the cause of fever.
- Do not panic! generally fever, not life threatening.
- Observe the child's behavior.
When the temperature is too high the child is still cheerful, active and want to play, then we need not panic.
- Do not give fever-reducing medication when the fever is not high.
- Knowing when to worry and call the doctor
When to call the doctor?
Below is a guide created by the American Academy of Pediatrics:
- If your baby in less than 3 months old with body temperature reaches 38C or more.
- When babies aged 3-6 months with body temperature reaching 38.3C or more.
- If baby & children over 6 months old with body temperature reaches 40C or more.
- Do not want to drink / have become dehydrated.
- Crying continuously.
- Sleep continuously.
- Shortness of breath, restlessness, vomiting or diarrhea.