As a parent, you may experience being worried and clueless on what to do upon seeing your baby flushed, hot, and sweaty. “Should I get the thermometer or call the doctor right away?” A high temperature can be an indication of a range of possible illnesses or concerns. When your baby suffers from a temperature increase, ensure you know how to manage a high baby temperature.
It can be frightening when your baby’s temperature rises, fever itself causes no harm and can actually be a good thing – it’s often the body’s way of fighting infections. And not all fevers need to be treated. High fever, however, can make a baby uncomfortable and worsen problems such as dehydration.
Things to do:
Normal: For a baby (or child or adult), it is normal to have an internal body heat of about 36 to 37 degrees. Lower than 36 degrees means that your baby needs to be ‘warmed up’.
Low grade: If it is between 37 to 37.5 degrees. This is not regarded as a fever, but may be caused by your baby being overexposed to the sun, overheated, overdressed, being over-wrapped, or being in a hot a closed environment (room, car, etc.), particularly in a warm weather.
If this occurs to your baby and there are no other physical signs of infection, then it is best to remove some clothes or bedding. Take off any heavy or thick clothing, only place a sheet or light cover over them when sleeping. If their temperature comes down, then nothing else required
High grade fever: Doctors usually say a baby has a fever if the temperature rises to 38 degrees, or above. Learn what your baby’s normal level is by taking it a few times when he or she is well.
Fever happens to babies easily because the infant’s immune system is immature and not as effective in fighting off infections as it will be after three or four months of living outside the womb. So it’s important to learn how to correctly take your infant’s temperature and understand what signifies a fever.
You do not need to take their temperature on a regular basis. However, it can be checked every 4 hours for close monitoring. See age based guide to your baby’s fever here.
Monitor your child when the following symptoms occur:
Axillary (under the arm)
Normal range (axillary): 36.5 to 37.4 degrees Celsius
Normal rectal range: 37.9 degrees Celsius or less
If you have further questions or concerns about how best to monitor your child during a fever, seek the advice of your doctor or maternal health nurse.