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How to treat your child's fever

  • Acetaminophen

    Important

    Follow your health care provider's instructions or the directions on the package label.

    Keep this medicine out of reach of children.

    Brand names of acetaminophen include Liquiprin®,Tempra® and Little Fevers®.

    • Always follow your health care provider's instructions.
    • One dose of acetaminophen should last for four hours.Do not give another dose during those four hours.
    • Do not give your child more than five doses ofacetaminophen in 24 hours.
    • Do not give your child more medicine than theamount recommended by your health care provideror listed on the package label.
    • Do not save droppers from old bottles. Only give thedosage with the syringe that comes with the medicine.

    Acetaminophen dosage chart

    Find your child's weight. Follow the column that matches your child's weight to drops, liquid or chewable tablets.

    Weight in pounds

    6 to 11

    12 to 17

    18 to 23

    24 to 35

    36 to 47

    Age

    newborn to 2 years

    2 to 3 years

    4 to 5 years

    Dose (milligrams)

    40 mg

    80 mg

    120 mg

    160 mg

    240 mg

    Drops (80 mg/0.8 mL)

    0.4 mL (1/2 dropper)

    0.8 mL (1 dropper)

    1.2 mL (1 and 1/2 dropper)

    1.6 mL (2 droppers)

    2.4 mL (3 droppers)

    Drops (80 mg/1 mL)

    0.5 mL (1/2 dropper)

    1 mL (1 dropper)

    1.5 mL (1 and 1/2 dropper)

    2 mL (2 droppers)

    3 mL (3 droppers)

    Infant suspension (160 mg/5 mL)

    1.25 mL (1/4 teaspoon)

    2.5 mL (1/2 teaspoon)

    3.75 mL (3/4 teaspoon)

    5 mL (1 teaspoon)

    7.5 mL (1 and 1/2 teaspoon)

    Liquid (160 mg/5 mL)

    1.25 mL (1/4 teaspoon)

    2.5 mL (1/2 teaspoon)

    3.75 mL (3/4 teaspoon)

    5 mL (1 teaspoon)

    7.5 mL (1 and 1/2 teaspoon)

    Chewable tablets (80 mg each)

    --

    --

    --

    2 tablets

    3 tablets

    Ibuprofen

    Brand names of ibuprofen include Advil®, Motrin® and Nuprin®. Ibuprofen is also known as a nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drug (NSAID).

    • Always follow your health care provider's instructions.
    • Do not give ibuprofen to a child younger than 6 months old. It is neither recommended nor approved.
    • One dose of ibuprofen should last six to eight hours. Do not give another dose during those six to eight hours.
    • Do not give your child more than four doses of ibuprofen in 24 hours.
    • Do not give your child more medicine than the amount recommended by your health care provider or listed on the package label.
    • Keep this and all medicines out of reach of children.
    • Do not save droppers from old bottles. Only give the dosage with the syringe that comes with the medicine.

    Ibuprofen dosage chart

    Find your child's weight. Follow the column that matches your child's weight to drops, liquid or chewable tablets.

    Weight in pounds

    12 to 17

    18 to 23

    24 to 35

    36 to 47

    Age

    6 to 23 months

    2 to 3 years

    4 to 5 years

    Dose (milligrams)

    50 mg

    75 mg

    100 mg

    150 mg

    Drops (50 mg/1.25 mL)

    1.25 mL (2/3 dropper)

    1.875 mL (1 dropper)

    2.5 mL (1 and 1/3 dropper)

    3.75 mL (2 droppers)

    Liquid or suspension (100 mg/5 mL)

    --

    --

    5 mL (1 teaspoon)

    7.5 mL (1 and 1/2 teaspoon)

    Chewable tablets (50 mg each)

    --

    --

    2 tablets

    3 tablets

    Aspirin

    Do not give your child aspirin or medicines that contain salicylate to treat a viral illness, unless your health care provider gives you directions.

    These medicines put your child at risk of developing Reye's syndrome , a life-threatening brain and liver disorder.

    Non-medicine treatments

    • Give your child lots of liquids. Do not force her to drink.
    • Dress your child in lightweight clothing. If your child has chills, offer her a blanket. Take off the blanket when your child feels warmer.

    What a febrile (fever) seizure means

    Important

    Call 911 if your child has trouble breathing, or if the seizure lasts more than 15 minutes.

    A febrile (fever) seizure is usually harmless. About 6 percentof children between the ages of 6 months and 6 yearshave a seizure with a rapidly rising fever.

    A seizure usually lasts for less than 1 minute but it canlast up to 15 minutes or longer.

    Your child is possibly having a seizure if:

    • her eyes roll upward
    • her arms are flexed and legs are straight or if there isa rhythmic jerking of arms and legs

    What to do if your child has a seizure

    • Turn on the lights.
    • Look at the time.
    • Move your child to a soft surface. Roll your child toher side so any saliva or vomit can drain from hermouth.
    • Do not hold your child. She will thrash around.Make sure there are no objects around your childthat could injure her.
    • Do not put anything in your child's mouth.
    • When the seizure is done, sweep away any salivaor vomit with a napkin or washcloth. Your childmay appear to be drowsy after the seizure.
    • Call your health care provider.
    • Call 911 if your child has trouble breathing,or if the seizure lasts more than 15 minutes.
  • Source: Allina Health's Patient Education Department, Guide for the Care of Children: Ages Birth to 5 Years Old, fifth edition. To avoid awkward sentences, instead of referring to your child as "he/she" or "him/her," this guide will alternate between "he" or she" and "him" or "her."
    Reviewed by: Allina Health's Patient Education Department experts, including the Pediatric Department of Allina Health Coon Rapids Clinic
    First reviewed: 02/01/2010
    Last reviewed: 01/01/2014


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