Sunday, June 27, 2010

Tips on caring for children - II


Continuing our series of useful tips on caring for children, here's Child care tip #2

The mistake: Fever phobia. Fever induces much parental panic, but fever is a sign that the body is fighting an infection. In children, a high fever has little to do with the seriousness of the infection. The highest fever the child will experience will be with the completely harmless disease — roseola — while many children with life-threatening infections will have low-grade fevers, said Belilovsky.

A better way: "Notice how your child looks when his fever is down," said Cowan, author of "Figuring Out Your Child's Fever," a guide for parents that's included with her book, "Peeper Has a Fever" (The Hippocratic Press). "Children with fevers tend to look exhausted and 'wiped out,' listless and curled up on a sofa." If those children still look like that when their fevers are closer to normal, then a phone call is a good idea.

Also, don't bother "bundling, feeding a fever/starving a cold, avoiding bathing, avoiding ceiling fans, alternating Tylenol and Motrin (usually unnecessary unless prone to febrile seizures) or bathing in cool water," said pediatrician Ari Brown, author of "Baby 411" (Windsor Peak Press). "These are all old wives' tales and fairly counterproductive."

WHEN TO WORRY ABOUT A FEVER

Newborn-3 months: 100.4 degrees Fahrenheit (38 degrees Celsius)

3 months-2 years: 102 degrees (39 degrees Celsius)

Older than 2 years: 104-105 degrees (40 degrees Celsius)

Source: Pediatrician Charlotte Cowan

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