Baby’s First Fever

Lilly had her first fever the other day while Paul was at work. It was terrifying. It got up to 102! I had no idea how to make it better; I was completely overwhelmed. My first instinct was to take her to the ER immediately but, Paul had the good sense to have me call her pediatrician’s office first for their after-hours help.

Here are some tips for handling baby fevers from my pediatrician:

  • Run them a room temperature bath to help cool them down some
  • Give your baby Tylenol every 4-6 hours for as long as the fever persists (for babies 6 months and up, you can switch off between Tylenol and Motrin)

If you can find the Infant Drops version of these medicines – these are the best. Much thinner than the children’s version and much easier for baby to take. Lilly absolutely hated regular liquid Tylenol because it is so thick. We use Motrin infant drops now and she drinks it like it’s water.

  • Check baby’s temperature about every 15 minutes once you’ve started with the medication and you should see it start to come down quickly, if not right away
  • If you call the pediatrician’s office after hours, the on call nurse will most likely have you come into the office for an in-person checkup if baby is still not feeling well

Lilly’s fever went down after about an hour of medicine and I brought her into her doctor’s office the next day. My girl tested positive for the flu 😦 I started feeling sick as soon as we got home and it’s amazing how quickly I got worse. Lilly gave me her flu and it’s been a rough couple of days at our house. Lilly already seems to be over the worst of it. It’s incredible how resilient babies are! I’m still miserable but, I’m starting to feel a little better. At least, now I can get out of bed and do a few chores here and there.

I wish I had known before Lilly got sick that it’s OK for babies to have fevers. It doesn’t automatically mean the worst. It just means they are fighting something off and, fevers actually help this process go faster. Knowing this would have helped me not stress as much as I did; I’ve always been afraid of fevers. Fevers are OK; you just want to make sure it doesn’t get out of hand. I also learned that the fussier she got, the higher her temperature seemed to be. We just dealt with her extreme fussiness for a full 24 hours without even thinking she could have a fever. I definitely felt like a bad mom but, I learned. We have now added temperature check to the list of things to try when she gets really fussy for no apparent reason.

Honestly, I’m not sure how I could have gotten through the last few days without my husband. He was able to come home early from work when I needed him and he’s taken really great care of both of his girls 🙂 When I was at my worst, I couldn’t even sit up in bed and he was forced to do all of the baby care by himself. I really hope he doesn’t get sick but, if he does, I’ll be happy to return the favor and take care of him.

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