When a child has a fever, the parents’ failure to accurately measure the temperature, warm or apply cold, or give fever-reducing medicine incorrectly can make the child’s condition more serious.
When she was a new mother, Ms. Bui Ha (Long Bien, Hanoi) used to go through times of “heart attack” because of a fever. As soon as the weather changes, baby Mushroom gets flu, cough, runny nose and is often accompanied by a high fever above 39 degrees. Because she had just had her first child, she was very inexperienced in taking care of children. There was a time when her child had a long-lasting high fever, had a convulsion, and had to be hospitalized, making her very scared.
Ms. Minh Hieu (Tan Binh, Ho Chi Minh City) also has many “unforgettable” memories when her children were young. The couple lives far away from their grandparents, so every time the child is sick, the whole family can’t eat or sleep. The more she saw the fever, the more nervous she became, whoever told her to do it. Afraid that the baby would be cold, she warmed her child, sometimes wiping her body with a cold towel hoping that her child would cool down, or sometimes arbitrarily taking fever-reducing medicine without paying attention to the dose, making her not fever-reducing but even sicker. Many nights awake, she used to think about quitting her job to stay at home to take care of her children because every time her child was sick, she felt exhausted as well.
Doctor CK2 Hoang Quoc Tuong, lecturer at the University of Medicine and Pharmacy in Ho Chi Minh City, said that these mistakes are very common when parents take care of children with fever. Fever is a common symptom in young children when the body reacts to pathogens. In particular, the current autumn and winter weather is a favorable condition for many viruses and bacteria to develop and cause dangerous infectious diseases in young children such as hand, foot and mouth disease, dengue fever, bronchiolitis, and bronchiolitis. upper respiratory tract infection… When sick, children often have a high fever with other symptoms.
Dr. Tuong noted that when a child has a fever, parents should calmly handle it, avoiding hastily applying the methods without a scientific basis below, causing unpredictable consequences for the child.
Measure body temperature by hand
Many parents have the habit of touching their forehead with their hands to guess the child’s temperature when they have a fever. However, this way of determining the child’s body temperature by sense will not be accurate. Preliminary identification can be made by touching the child’s armpits with hands, but should not touch the hands and feet because when the fever is high, the hands and feet may be cold, making the assessment of the condition wrong.
Dr. Chiang said that to properly check the child’s temperature, parents should use a thermometer. Mercury thermometers give accurate results but are fragile, causing poisoning for children. Therefore, measuring body temperature with an infrared device will be safer. The best way to measure is to place the probe above the eyebrow and then slowly move the probe along the eyebrow in front of the ear and see the result displayed on the screen.
“Parents should use an electronic thermometer to measure the child’s temperature in the armpit, mouth, anus, ear, forehead. For newborns, an electronic thermometer should be used to clamp the armpit. For children 3 months – 5 years old. , you can take the temperature from the armpit or the ear. Older children can take the temperature mainly from the armpit,” said Dr. Tuong.
If the child has an rectal temperature of 36.5 – 37.5 degrees Celsius, it is normal. If the temperature of the anus, the ear is over 38 degrees Celsius, the armpit and mouth temperature is over 37.5 degrees Celsius, it means the child has a fever.
Taking care of children the wrong way
When seeing that their child has a high fever, some parents find ways to cool down their child’s body such as applying fever reducers, applying ice packs, wiping themselves with cold water, water mixed with alcohol or alcohol, rubbing lemons.. However, Doctors… warn that these methods are not only ineffective in reducing fever but can also be dangerous for children.
When applying a cold compress or using a patch, the child’s skin will feel cooler, but in fact the body temperature does not decrease, and the child may even get sicker because of the cold absorption. Similarly, applying cold water to a child’s body or wiping it with cold water can cause an excessive temperature difference, leading to frostbite and respiratory failure. Alcohol and alcohol can cool quickly but contain some chemicals that can penetrate the skin and cause poisoning in children. Lemon can also reduce fever, but in lemon contains substances that are harmful to the young skin of children.
“Although there is no need to apply a cold compress, many mothers abstain from bathing, even abstaining from washing the child’s body. Because bathing or wiping with warm water will help the child feel cleaner and more comfortable, limiting the risk of danger. The baby’s body is infected,” said Doctor Chiang.
Parents should let children wear light, airy clothes, not warm or take off all of their children’s clothes. Let the child lie in a cool place, reduce the room temperature, avoid the wind. In addition, children should drink a lot of water or drink oresol to rehydrate the body, besides other solutions such as milk, juice to supplement vitamins.
Inappropriate use of antipyretics
Currently, there are many antipyretic drugs on the market with different ingredients such as Paracetamol, Ibuprofen, Aspirin…. The abuse or use of antipyretic drugs of the wrong type and dosage can cause consequences. unpredictably on children’s health.
According to the doctor…, only when the child’s fever is above 38.5 degrees Celsius, parents should give the child fever-reducing medicine with an appropriate dose. For example, the antipyretic drug Hapacol contains Paracetamol, with separate doses for each subject, so it is easy to use such as Hapacol 80 for children weighing 5 to 8 kg, Hapacol 150 for children weighing 10 to 15 kg, Hapacol 250 for children weighing 16 up to 25 kg.
Parents should consider when using drugs containing Aspirin and Ibuprofen to reduce fever for children because Aspirin can cause bleeding, and Ibuprofen can cause unpleasant reactions to the gastrointestinal tract of children. These types should only be used when prescribed by a doctor.
It is necessary to take the initiative to bring the child to the hospital when the child begins to have some unusual symptoms such as a continuous high fever above 39 degrees Celsius, wheezing, difficulty breathing, lethargy, difficulty waking up, convulsions with cold hands and feet, Vomiting all that has been sucked or eaten, high bulge beak, stiff neck, bleeding, vomiting, diarrhea….
Because she was haunted by the sick times, nearly 10 years later, Ha dared to give birth to a second child. This time, Ms. Ha has more experience and knows how to take better care of her children when the seasons change. From things like not wearing too many warm clothes, giving your baby plenty of water and other solutions such as juice, milk… to keeping the living space clean and cool, creating games for the baby to move. Activities in the house, limiting children’s exposure to cold air are all memorized by Ha.
As for Ms. Hieu, she always kept in touch with the Pediatrician when giving birth to her second child. According to the advice from the baby’s doctor, she always monitors the baby’s temperature with a thermometer every 4 hours and carefully observes all the child’s body reactions when he has a fever so that he can handle it promptly.
In addition, doctors advise parents to keep fever-reducing medicines at home. In the family cabinet of Ms. Ha and Ms. Hieu, there are always available Hapacol suitable for children in terms of dosage. The medicine has a sweet orange smell, so it is easy for children to cooperate. Thanks to that, every time the weather changes seasons, the two mothers no longer have to worry about the fever, nor do the children vomit when they have to take medicine. Not only preventing sick children, Hapacol 650 is also stored by the family before Covid-19 vaccination for members in case of side effects causing fever.