HealthONE - November 20, 2020

Simple at-home treatments are generally effective for low-grade fevers. When rest, fluids and over-the-counter medicine don’t do the trick, a fever can be an indicator of a more serious infection. Use the guidelines below to decide if you need to seek emergency care at for yourself or your child at a Denver hospital near you.

Fever in infants and babies

If your child is less than three months old, an ER visit is necessary if he or she has a temperature over 100.4 degrees, or if his or her fever is accompanied by the following symptoms:

  • Difficulty breathing
  • Difficulty waking up to feed or not feeding
  • Inconsolable, non-stop crying
  • Rash
  • Vomiting

Fever in babies three months to three years of age

If your child is between three months and three years of age, an ER visit is necessary if he or she has a higher fever (over 102.2 degrees), or if his or her fever is accompanied by the following symptoms:

  • Difficulty breathing
  • Difficulty waking up
  • If your child is not immunized
  • Inconsolable
  • Not feeding or eating
  • Not urinating
  • Rash
  • Unable to keep fluids down

Fever in children 36 months and older

Children three or older need to visit the ER if they have a high fever (over 102 degrees) for two days or more, or if their fever is accompanied by any of the following symptoms:

  • Abdominal pain
  • Cannot keep fluids down
  • Difficulty breathing or swallowing
  • Does not look well
  • Does not urinate or experiencing burning during urination
  • Not eating
  • Rash
  • Stiff neck

High fever in adults

Seek emergency care if you or a loved one is experiencing a fever that lasts for more than two days, or if the fever is accompanied by any of these symptoms:

  • A headache pain you’ve never felt before
  • Abdominal pain
  • Burning during urination
  • Difficulty breathing or swallowing
  • If you may have a compromised immune system
  • If you have recently had chemotherapy

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