Paracetamol and ibuprofen warning

Current medical advice is that parents should not give children regular doses of paracetamol and ibruprofen for treatment of a simple fever alone.

Treating fever in children

Paracetamol and ibuprofen can prolong the length of time the body takes to recover. Photograph: Flickr

A high temperature is often the body’s way of fighting an infection so to administer these medicines known collectively as “anti-pyretics” can in fact, prolong the length of time the body takes to recover.

In society, ‘fever phobia’ means parents too quickly administer relief from quite slight temperatures and children who are given paracetamol and ibruprofen before 15 months old are twice as likely to develop asthma before aged six. Other outcomes of administering too readily is accidental overdose from mis-reading of dosage labels and giving children who are small for their age the wrong dosage.

The general advice in Britain is that “anti-pyretics” should be administered when the child has a temperature of over 38C (101.4F) and who appear distressed and unwell. Children should receive no more than four doses of the right amount of paracetamol in a 24-hour period, and no more than four doses of ibuprofen.

Source:

Telegraph, Fever medicines given to readily to children Feb 2011

Photograph:

Acornchief @Flickr

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