There’s nothing like the holidays to create a perfect incubator for germs.  And nothing like the holidays to create a hero out of a common childhood symptom.

We gather together in groups to celebrate with people who may have come from as far away as across the country and as near as next door…and share germs.  We congregate in

small-ish spaces for parties and mealtimes….and share germs. Oh, and we mingle with the masses at malls, amusement parks, churches, and other places where…you guessed it…we share germs!

“Bah humbug!” you might say. But the truth is that more often than not, our immune systems gear up to fight off the germs and we continue on our merry holiday ways, none the worse for wear.

When the inevitable “bug” sets up home in our bodies, one of the greatest super heroes of all makes an appearance – fever! That’s right, fever is the super hero that all of us, including our kids, depend upon to “cook the germs.”

When the body’s temperature rises it creates an environment that is inhospitable to many viruses. According to Dr. Barton Schmidt, the country’s leading expert on Pediatric Telephone Protocols, fevers between 100° and 104° F  are actually good for sick children because they help the body fight infection.

So while many parents think fever will hurt their child, the truth is that fever is typically harmless, and often very helpful.

To learn about the myths and facts about fever, its causes, when to worry, and how you can manage the symptoms at home, check out the Is Your Child Sick? function on Weiss Pediatric Care’s homepage.  There you’ll find parent-friendly information that is based on science, and that will steer you clear of the scary, unreliable, and sometimes even dangerous things you can read on the internet.

We hope you have a HEALTHY holiday season but if your child gets sick, it’s quite likely the super hero –fever– may make an appearance, along with a host of other symptoms, such as runny nose, cough, achiness, and fatigue.

Here are Dr. Weiss’s Top Five Tips for Treating Fever at home:

  1. Fevers only need to be treated with medicine if they cause discomfort. Most often, that means fevers above 102° F Remember the fever will help fight the infection.  As long as your child isn’t complaining of discomfort, let the super hero do its good work!
  2. When treating with medications to lower fever, follow the Medicine Dosage guidelines available in the Is Your Child Sick? app on our homepage.
  3. Encourage your child to drink extra fluids.
  4. Keep your home comfortably cool, and dress your child lightly.
  5. Sometimes putting your child in a tepid bath will help lower the temperature.  If your child starts to shiver, then the water is too cold. Shivering can make a fever worse so remove your child from the bath if you notice he’s shivering.

Though never a welcome guest, if your child comes down with a “bug” over the holidays, fever may just turn out to be your holiday’s super hero, helping your child get better faster!

Be well!

The Weiss Pediatric Care Team

Dr. Weiss has been recognized as a Top Doctor in Sarasota for well over a decade. He is also Family Living Magazine’s Reader’s Choice for Pediatrician.

If you’re not already part of the Weiss Pediatric Care family, we’d love to meet you. 

Stop by to say hi or give us a call at 941-552-8341 to schedule a complimentary Get Acquainted or Prenatal visit.