Survey finds 1 in 3 parents give fever medicine when not needed

Survey finds 1 in 3 parents give fever medicine when not needed


Many parents quickly turn to fever medication when their children start showing signs of a fever, but pediatricians warn that this may not be necessary.

According to a new national survey from CS Mott Children’s Hospital, 1 in 3 parents would give their children medication for a mild fever, defined as less than 100.4 degrees Fahrenheit (38 degrees Celsius), and 1 in 2 parents would use medication for fever. between 100.4 F and 101.9 F (38 C and 38.83 C).

These drugs can keep your child comfortable, but unnecessary use may delay diagnosis of the cause of fever by masking pain and other symptoms.

“When parents notice that their child’s temperature might be a little high, I think sometimes they worry about the fever itself,” said Dr. Susan Woolford, Mott and Mott Poll pediatrician. co-director. “Maybe it’s not entirely clear to parents that the fever itself isn’t the problem, it’s what could be causing the fever. So we don’t really need to try to get rid of the fever, because the fever is just a sign that something else is going on.

The Mott poll was conducted among 1,376 parents of young children under the age of 12, and responses were collected between August and September.

Eighty four % of parents will take their child’s temperature before giving a second dose, but 26% of parents will give another dose, even if there is no fever present, to try to prevent the fever from coming back, according to the survey.

Parents worry that their children “will get super sick if they don’t give them something,” said Dr. Chandani DeZure, a pediatrician and spokesperson for the American Academy of Pediatrics who was not involved in the Mott poll. “That’s just not the case, because as we know, fever is the body’s natural response to an infection.”

Anti-fever medicine is not preventative medicine, DeZure noted. “It’s a treatment.”

Once the the temperature has been accurately checked and the child is confirmed to have a fever greater than 100.4 F (38 C), it is reasonable to give the correct dose of anti-fever medication based on weight and child’s age in the drug’s instructions, Woolford said.

The poll found that two-thirds of parents initially tried other methods to reduce fever, such as using a cool washcloth.

“The goal is to try to keep the child comfortable,” Woolford said. “To make sure they’re wearing light clothes, keep the room cool, not cold, but comfortably cool, and then make sure they stay well hydrated.”

However, if an infant younger than 3 months has a fever, parents should contact their pediatrician. If a child has a fever along with significant symptoms such as extreme drowsiness, neck pain and difficulty breathing, parents should contact their pediatrician immediately, Woolford said.

Some 65% of parents said they keep a record of when they gave each dose, something all parents should do, according to the survey, so they don’t risk an overdose if a second dose is needed. They shouldn’t give another dose to keep the fever from coming back, according to DeZure and Woolford.

“At this time of year, I feel like prevention is a really good approach, so we can try to avoid getting as many of these diseases as possible,” Woolford said.

“You can’t do everything, but we can do a lot of hand hygiene, (we) can be sure we’re washing our hands and using hand sanitizer appropriately, and we can be sure we’re not do not dose children with drugs. and send them to school, because they are still contagious.

Leave a Comment