Dose of ibuprofen (repeated every 6-8 hours until fever breaks); my doctor told me that ibuprofen works better on fevers. It is CRUCIAL that you give your child the correct dosage. Too much is bad and too little may make it ineffective at these critical times, which has happened to me. The Biscuit is a chunky boy so I ask my doctor every 6 months or so what the proper dosage is. If the Biscuit's fever doesn't go down at all, I'll do the following:
- Take off all clothing, except a pull-up, diaper, undies (whatever); clothing keeps the heat in
- Offer a drink of water/juice (ideally, offer room temperature liquids b/c the body has to burn energy to get the temp of the liquid to that of the body BUT the Biscuit is NEVER in the mood to drink anything when he has a fever so the ONLY thing I am able to lure him to drink during fever time is a cool juice box)
- Cool washcloth on the forehead, back of the neck, or top of head
- Turn on a cool fan, turn down the A/C
- Dose of Tylenol. This is a bit controversial, so definitely talk to your doctor. Advice I have gotten from another toddler mommy and my doctor was to wait the 20 mins or so to see if the ibuprofen is working. If it doesn't start to lower the fever, give the appropriate dose of Tylenol. You can keep the 2 going (alternating) as long as you keep to the 4-6 hours for Tylenol and 6-8 for ibuprofen. I ONLY do this when there is a high need to get the fever down quickly.
So those are the basic tips I have to share. Fevers can be scary but if you have the checklist in your head, it's easier to think it through before rushing to the ER in the middle of the night. I think we, as parents, tend to know whether our toddler is OK and just fighting a fever or in trouble. I am more confident in my ability to help the Biscuit through a fever after dealing with him in the worst of circumstances. When the Biscuit had RSV, I held his lethargic, labored-breathing body in my arms as he fought a 103 fever that escalated to 105 in less than 2 hours.
I now know when a 103 fever is just a fever that I can bring down and when he is in trouble and needs medical intervention. Fortunately, all parents haven't had the same desperate circumstances. My rule of thumb is that I always give it an hour following all of the above and if it hasn't gone down at all... I may call the doctor (if it has gone up and hits 103 and rising I'm on my way to the urgent care center).
The body is a magical thing and fevers are a natural way for it to fight off infection. TLC is an amazing remedy and nothing beats the magic that "mommy hold me" can do. Good luck with your little ones as we enter Flu season.