Pain and Fever

If your child has a headache

If your child has a headache then use a child-specific painkiller that contains either ibuprofen or paracetamol. A cool wet flannel applied to their forehead can also help to soothe the pain. You should visit your IPSA physician if your child’s headache lasts longer than two days or if it is the result of a bang to their head.

If your child has a fever/high temperature

A fever is when your body’s temperature goes over 37.5˚C. The main fever symptoms are general irritability and a hot forehead. You can measure your child’s temperature in two ways. You can use an ear thermometer or, if your child will not stay still for long enough, you can use a forehead strip. The best method of treating a fever that your child is experiencing is to use paracetamol- or ibuprofen-based medicine, if this is appropriate for your child. To check the suitability of these medicines, simply speak to your IPSA pharmacist before giving any medicines to your child.

Other things can be done to reduce your child’s fever or to make your child feel more comfortable when they have a fever.

  • Remove the outer layers of their clothing
  • Keep the room cool at approximately 18°C
  • Ensure that you give them lots of cool water even if they say they are not thirsty

Contact your IPSA physician:

  • If your child is less than 3 months old and he/she has a temperature of 38°C or higher
  • If your child is 3 to 6 months old and he/she has a temperature of 39°C or higher
  • If your child is older than 6 months old and he/she has other signs that he/she is unwell (e.g. being floppy or drowsy)
  • If your child’s fever remains high after a 24-hour period
  • If your child is not drinking or can’t keep any fluids down
  • If they have a fever of 40°C
  • If they have difficulty waking
  • If they have difficulty breathing
  • If they have had diarrhoea and been vomiting for more than 2 days (or for 24 hours for a baby)
  • If they have blood-stained diarrhoea or vomit
  • If they are screaming with their knees drawn up to their chest
  • If they are pulling at their ears
  • If they are sleeping past mealtimes
  • If they are not drinking and not urinating