Your Baby & Toddler - - HEALTH NOTEBOOK -

Keep push­ing flu­ids

Make sure your baby gets enough flu­ids, so that he doesn’t get de­hy­drated. “Clear flu­ids or milk (either breast milk or for­mula if your baby is on for­mula) should suf­fice, and if your baby is eat­ing solids, en­cour­age him to eat too,” says paediatric­ian Dr Deliwe Ngwezi. You can also of­fer your baby an elec­trolyte so­lu­tion mixed with water.

Sponge him down with luke­warm water

Un­dress your baby, and use a sponge dipped in luke­warm water to pat him down. This will help him feel more com­fort­able and may even help bring the fever down a bit. Don’t put your baby in a cold bath, as this could be quite a shock to his sys­tem.

Keep the en­vi­ron­ment cool

Don’t over­dress your baby – keep him com­fort­able, but don’t overdo it. Dr Ngwezi also rec­om­mends nurs­ing your baby in a cool room with ad­e­quate ven­ti­la­tion. You can also use a fan to keep your baby cool.

Parac­eta­mol can help

If all other mea­sures of bring­ing the fever down don’t work, you can give your baby a dose of parac­eta­mol (Panado or Calpol) ac­cord­ing to the dosage in­struc­tions on the pack­age in­sert, says Dr Ngwezi. “Re­mem­ber that the cor­rect dos­ing of parac­eta­mol should be given ac­cord­ing to weight and not to age, as there is fre­quent over­dos­ing of ba­bies be­tween one and three months of age. Use this with cau­tion,” she adds.

See the doc­tor

If you have done all of the above, and your baby’s fever con­tin­ues, take him to a doc­tor. If your baby is younger than 28 days and has a fever, take him to the doc­tor im­me­di­ately. Dr Ngwezi says that this requires hos­pi­tal ad­mis­sion. The same goes for ba­bies whose fevers are cou­pled with lethargy and re­fusal to eat, as well as ba­bies who vomit per­sis­tently after feed­ing. If your baby has a febrile con­vul­sion as a re­sult of a fever, take him to the hos­pi­tal.

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