Fever in Infants and Children

Please note: Babies YOUNGER THAN 3 MONTHS old need to be seen by a doctor when they have a fever.

For complete info, please refer to CHEO's pamphlet about fever in children

Some Facts about Fever in Children (from the CHEO website)

How do I know if my child has a fever?

A temperature of 38C (100.4F) or higher means your child has a fever.

Taking care of a child with a fever at home:

  • Fever medicine will lower the temperature a little and will make your child more comfortable.
  • Give extra fluids. Children need to drink more fluids when they have a fever.
  • Repeat the medicine as needed to keep your child comfortable and drinking.
  • Fever medicine does not remove all fever, and it won't stop the fever from coming back.
  • Dress your child lightly in one layer of clothing. Don't wrap your child up in blankets, even if they are shivering.

You'll need to see your family doctor if your child:

  • Has a fever for more than 4 days;
  • Is not getting better after 1 week of symptoms;
  • Develops an ear ache.

When your child has a fever:

  • Try ibuprofen first, as it works better for most children.
  • If your child does not improve 1 hour after ibuprofen, you can try acetaminophen.
  • Use acetaminophen instead of ibuprofen if your child has a fever due to chicken pox.
  • Do not use Aspirin (ASA).

Numbers to know:

TeleHealth Ontario: 1-866-797-0000 TTY: 1-866-797-0007

Health Information from Registered Nurses, 24 hours a day, 7 days a week


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