Pink cheeks. Warm body. Lethargic.
It might just be one of the saddest things when your baby or big kid has a fever. More often than not parents feel really helpless. What can you do?
Fever is an increase of the body's core temperature, typically in response to an infection or injury. A fever is the body's natural response to help enhance the immune system's ability to fight the infection.
I welcome a fever if my kids aren't feeling well. How else will your body rid itself of the attacking crud? When I say 'welcome' I mean with caution, of course. Nobody knows your kiddo better than you do. You'll know when/if it is time for some fever reducer.
This might just be the perfect time for me to introduce one of my favorite books - I use this book when my kiddos have ailments, and I'm not sure what I can do to help them, before turning anywhere else.
The offering of alternative methods of treatment in this book is comforting/refreshing to me. In our world filled with western medicine this book suggests herbal remedies, homeopathic remedies, and an array of options for each ailment it houses.
Now back to that fever...
Here are some simple things I do. I love using Frankincense for a fever, especially for aches. I apply it to the neck and chest when my kids are feverish. I used this once during a vaccination reaction (high fever, vomiting and scary zoning) and it seemed to be the best thing I could've done for Simon (and myself).
If the fever is reaching a point that I feel is dangerous (over 103) I usually run a cool bath and submerge my naked kid in it. That almost always works. If they are in a delicate situation and you aren't wanting to move them, cool rags on a little naked body can also do the trick. To pull the fever - you want to use Peppermint oil on the bottoms of the feet. This oil can be very intense however, so use with caution. If you are near a water source or just getting out of the bath make sure your skin is nice and dry before you apply and keep away from eyes. If you get in a sticky situation you can always dilute with olive oil or another edible oil that you have on hand.
I also use Lemon, Bergamot and Eucalyptus Radiata to cool the system when dealing with a fever. There are many oils that you can use in case you don't happen to have Peppermint on hand but I've found it to be the most effective when cooling the body. You can use it frequently too. It isn't quite the same as using a fever reducer, you don't have to wait 8-12 hours before you use it again.
Now if you are hoping to encourage the fever, maybe you'd like to slightly raise it to burn out the bad guys, here are some suggestions. I always like to make sure you know I'm not a doctor, so I throw it in almost every post, do these suggestions with caution. Here is what I do, and as I mentioned before you know best how to care for your child...so maybe this doesn't work for you. I like to put Thieves, or Clove or Cinnamon Bark on my kids if I'm wanting their fever to bump up just a notch. What I'm hoping for when I do this is that the fever will reach a point and induce a sweat. Others oils you can use are Lavender, Basil, Melaleuca or Roman Chamomile.
Other suggestions: crushed garlic and/or onions in socks right up against the bottoms of feet is a great fever reducer and a perfect way to cook onions. It is stinky, obviously, but has worked at our house before.
Drink plenty of water to prevent dehydration. Popsicles are encouraged at our house. Cool socks around ankles, wet socks on feet and on the back of the neck are great tools to keep a fever at bay.
And, most importantly of all, so many snuggles are at the top of the list of things will make that babe of yours feel better.