29 answers

My Son Has Another fever...How Often Do Toddlers Get Fevers?

I know children/toddlers get fevers to help build up their immune system, and to fight off any viral or bacteria infection in them. It seems like ever since my son started playing with other children, he gets a fever just about every other month, or every three months. I know kids will get exposed to germs and get sick and that's part of growing up and building up their immune system. But every few months? My son will run a fever between 103-105. Like this morning, he woke up with a 105 temp. It's gone down since with what we are doing for it, but I'm just wondering if it's normal for three year olds, or any other toddlers to get fevers this often? What has been your experience with your toddler?

What can I do next?

So What Happened?™

Well, I took my son to his doctor yesterday morning and he said there wasn't any concern with his fevers, or cough. He listened to his chest and chatted for a while, and basically did nothing for my son other than saying to keep up what we're already doing with the tylenol/motrin.
Last night at Midnight (it's 5:30am now the next day), my son spiked another fever. We gave him motrin and stripped him of his clothes. An hour passes by and no changes in his fever. I took his temp and it was reading 106-107. Didn't sound right to me. So I'm thinking may be my ear thermometer is reading incorrectly...Well taking NO chances...We take him to the ER. By the time the triage nurse did vitals, his fever was broke completely. We go ahead and stay and wait for the doc. The doctor's assistant heard wheezing and crackling in his lungs when he was breathing. (note: this was happening with my son all weekend and his pediatrician did not catch this and of course what ever I said didn't matter cause I'm not the doc), anyway, so he ordered a chest x-ray. We also did some breathing treatments. We also did an RSV test..which that came out negative. Thank GOD! Come to find out my son has Bronchospasm, and a slight case of pneumonia. We got an antibiotic and we're having a nebulizer machine delivered this morning. FINALLY we're getting some treatment for my son. That poor boy of mine is a mess. I'm so glad to finally have some treatment. Now I'm relieved, and he's on his way to feeling much better. So if you are ever in need of an ER...The last few times we've been to Banner Estrella hospital, we've had nothing but excellent treatment/care. It's obvious they are very thorough. Now if only the price of an ER visit would go down...LOL Like that would ever happen...ha ha ha..
Thanks again for everyone's advice/suggestions! You're awesome!!! Take care.

Featured Answers

I think that sounds like pretty frequent fevers. More than normal...at least compared to my kids. And a 105 fever is not something to mess around with. If I were you I would have him seen my a good pediatrician. Best of luck and let us know!

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My youngest son used to get fevers "out of nowhere" with no other symptoms. When there is a fever, it means that their body is fighting something. That's what fevers do--and from that standpoint, they are good, so we would not medicate if it was only 100-101 degrees. Anything higher and we gave him something to cool down because a high fever can cause serious damage--and 103-105 is pretty high (although a fever that high would be worse for an adult than a toddler, or so my pediatrician told me.) Anyway, eventually, we figured out that he was getting urinary tract infections and that was what was causing the fever. Once we knew, we were able to take other action to prevent the cause. I'd check with my pediatician and see if they can figure out an underlying, recurring cause.
K. Winters

1 mom found this helpful

My daughter was 6 months when she started running a fever and it would spike really high. Luckily we took her to Children's Hospital in Parker (ER) and they tested her for Urinary Tract Reflux and sure enough that was the issue. I am convinced we would have had alot more problems had they not tested her then, but Children's knows what to look for, more so than other ER's. With your child's fever being that frequent, ask your pediatrician if you could get a test to rule it out.

1 mom found this helpful

105 seems quite high. A child running a lowgrade fever every now and then isn't too bad, but 103-105 is a dangerous temperature. According to my pediatrician, you should contact your doctor whenever it reaches that level. They should be able to tell you whether this is something normal or not. It could also be that your son is fighting an infection that is just not going away. My son was sick on and off for three months in a row. Whenever I took him to the doctor they would tell me he just had a cold, no outside signs of a bacterial infection, the kind you can fight with an antibiotic. But my grandma is a retired nurse and she told me to have the doctor run a CBC (complete blood count). They did and turned out my son had a bacterial infection and more than likely had had it the full three months that I thought he had only been fighting a cold. I guess my advice would be to ask your dr. and have them run some blood tests to determine whether there's something else going on. Good luck!

Sadly enough, I could relate to your issues with your child, My youngest daughter used to have fevers all the time as well. Her first hospitilazation was at 6 days old, then again about every 3 weeks for a long time.
I finally took her to the ENT doctor to have things looked at internally ( Ears, nose , throat ) and found that she was experienceing ear infections and needed tubes in her ears.
wa'la, .... our pediatrician couldnt figure it out, the regular doctors couldnt figure it out,
so try something new...
My daughter is now 10 years old, and is doing super great.- of course, now with out tubes, i had them taken out a few years back.
It might not be your childs exact issue, but it could be a underlying problem.
If you have ruled out everything else, it might be internal, like the ear drums..... etc.
Hope to hear how it goes... keep me posted.
Sincerely, T. from utah

G. 105 temp is to be of concern. Yes, children do tend to run a fever quicker than an adult and yes often running a fever can be the bodies on defense mechanism which acts to destroy harmful microbes. But, when the temp rises above 103 in a child you should take him to the Dr. first call and tell the nurse how high his temp. is and go from there.High fever may pose a risk for people with cardiac problems, dehydration and even brain jnjury if the fever stays that high for prolonged periods of time. If it was my child I would want to know more of the whys? and whats?
God Bless you and your little one!

Hi G.,
I have a 2 and a half year old son and he used to get sick every two weeks last winter. It was his first year at school two days a week and he was ALWAYS sick. And everything he got turned into an ear infection. It was a nightmare. This winter there has been such a huge improvement. He actually has only been sick twice. The best advice I can offer you is to wash his hands with soap and water often. This is the biggest way to prevent the sprad of germs. Also keep in mind, little kids run high fevers but I know how scary it can be when they are so little. Good luck.

My son, now 3-1/2, has had a bout with fevers this last year and the doctors just tell us that without any other symptoms, it's just a viral fever. He was getting every month for 5 months in a row and they would last for about 3 - 5 days, with a fever over 100/101 up to 105. The doctors and nursers said that kids can get between 8 to 10 viruses a year. Since this past spring/summer, he hasn't had them as often and his most recent bout only last three days with a fever of 103 tops. I guess all that I can tell you is to wait it out, especially if he's not showing any other symptoms. If he is, then definitely take him into the doctor to get checked out. The very first time it happened, we put our son through a barge of tests to try and figure out what was causing it and it broke me heart to have them draw blood, take a chest x-ray, suction snot out of his nose, etc. when he wasn't feeling good. The test results were inconclusive, so that didn't help me feel any better either. Hope your son gets better quick!

J., 35, Married/Working Mom of three and half year old boy and one year girl.

The time frame doesn't seem to out of the ordinary, but that high of a temp is VERY concerning. You need to talk to his doctor or take him to urgent care. He may be more sensitive to virus's and you'll just need to take extra care, but it's better to be safe than sorry. Our ped. always says to bring the kids in if their temperature gets above 102.

Hi G.,

I can understand your concern. It is so hard when our little ones get sick!

Personally, I don't agree with the thinking that little ones have to build up their immune systems by being exposed to illness. When my 3 year old son was a toddler he kept getting sick from other kids, especially if I took him to the nursery at church. When my son gets a cold he usually battles it for 2 weeks, which I think is a long time. I decided to stop taking him to the nursery (my parents watched him while my husband and I went to church) and I was careful about what kind of play situations I put him in. By doing that it really helped keep him well. Now that he is 3 he hardly gets sick. We have taken him to the pre-school at our church on a regular basis and he has not caught anything from there. I personally think that children need to grow and develop an immune system before they can "strengthen it". How are they supposed to strengthen it if they are sick all the time? If their immune systems are constantly fighting off illness then it can't get any stronger, it is just trying to survive.

Well, that is my opinion. I hope your son will be able to stay healthy.

Hi G.,

I know this can be frightening and frustrating. His immune system is a bit out of whack. Diet will play a big part in this. Do you give him vitamins regularly? Also, do you use non-toxic cleaners and laundry products? If not, I highly recommend converting your home to non-toxic products. Doing this should significantly improve the immune systems of EVERYONE in your home.

Good luck! :)

Hi G.. Sorry to hear your little boy is running fevers often :( Both my boys (3 and 1) are in daycare. The do get sick frequently with little colds and such but, rarely have a fever. If they do have a fever is usually mild - 100-101. I wish you well, it's hard to see our little ones sick.

it's not normal per ce, but if his immune system is bogged down with so many frequent illnesses it is a reaction to it. is he in an enviroment where there is a lot of illnesses?
(pre school etc) also, it could be that it's the same virus that never really went away but you didn't notice until the fever started again. make sure he eats fresh fruit and veg and he sleeps enough hours in order for the immune system to get strong again and be able to fight off minor viruses, etc. make sure he is dressed warmly all the time, does not leave the house with wet hair when it's cold, for example and if you know the person you're visiting has a sick child...cancel. don't knowingly expose him to someone else's cold/fever. i've noticed many people don't think it's a big deal and let their children play with sick kids, but again, i've also noticed the same kids seem to get sick every month!
;p hope he feels better soon!

I don't know how "normal" it is, but my little girl (soon to be three) does the same thing. She's in a daycare setting part-time, and the one thing that kids seem to have no problem sharing is germs. Last year we seemed to be sick half of the time between Halloween and Easter. This year seems a little better, but not by much.

She tends to run very high temperatures as well. We do use an ear thermometer which reads higher then an oral or armpit method. (The instructions give the normal range for kids her age, and it is higher.) We mostly use children's ibuprofen to control her temperature. But we sometimes also have to take a lukewarm bath or give her a dose of children's Tylenol to help get it down as well. Since we know she tends to run high fevers, we have taken to setting the alarm for 5.5 hours after her last dose and wake up to give her another one regardless of her temperature to make sure it doesn't get out of hand while we are sleeping. I've seen her go from 100 F to 104 F in under an hour!

BTW, we called the Dr's scared to death the first couple of times it got so high, and his advice was to try to get it down ourselves if we could do so within an hour, and if we couldn't get it under 103 within an hour, take her in then. He said as long as she wasn't listless and drinking fluids that they couldn't do much else with a virus at the ER and she'd probably be happier and less traumatized at home. He said if it was bacterial (Strep Throat) they could give her antibiotics, but for viruses they could only make her more comfortable while it ran its course. I will say that even when she is running a very high fever, she is never "out of it" and often seems amazingly cheerful. Of course, when in doubt call or take her in -- better to err on the side of caution -- but we try very hard to get it down ourselves first and not let it get out of control.

Best Wishes,


I was just talking to a friend about this as with my two kids they completely have different body make up when it comes to illness. If it is stomach related, my daughter will get it so fast and hard, yet my son has had one stomach illness his whole life, even after being exposed to my daughter when she was sick. She tends to run fevers easy. However, my son had ear infections and gets colds easy but rarely gets feverish.

Kids get germs, If your Dr isn't concerned I wouldn't be. Some kids have completely different genetic and immune makeups on how they get stuff, how long it goes on and so on. Be thankful for the illnesses now as I see with my daughter now in Elementary she is sick a lot less often after a hard toddlerhood of illness.
This year too it has seemed a hard illness year for kids.

I know fevers are normal, but our doctor asks us to call immediately for anything over 102. 103-105 can be very dangerous depending on what's causing it. I'd check with my doctor if it recurrent, especially since fevers are usually lower in the morning, not during the day.

What does your pediatrician say? Is your son complaining of pain when he urinates? You might check to see if he has a urinary tract infection. I ask b/c my three year old often did this and would later be treated with antibiotics and he would improve. We found out later that he had Kidney Reflux. He was never checked for a UTI or diagnosed with a one before. In October my daughter was diagnosed with a UTI and then Kidney Reflux. This is often heriditary among siblings so we had our son checked and sure enough that is what he had...Hind site...we wonder if he had been suffering with UTI's. We will never know, but I wouldn't mess around with a consistant fever..You might even suggest having blood work done.

I have never heard about children getting fevers that often and that this will make their immune system build up. They do fight germs and bacteria when they are sick, and then it's normal that they'll get a fever. But 105 seems a little too much, dangerously high. My kids hardly ever get sick, and they play with dirt, in the cold, with water, mud, you name it, and don't get sick more than once a year, if at all. Maybe he should be checked by a doctor to see if he has ear infections. They don't always hurt. Both my kids never showed any signs of ear infections, no pulling on their ears, no pain, nothing. All of the sudden they just got a fever and that's how we found out, and then the infection was really advanced. So have him checked by a doctor and you may get some good answers.

Hello -
You should REALLY be careful with your toddlers getting that high of a fever and if they really are that high, they need to go to the hospital after they reach 102 degrees. My son was 2 yrs old when he had a viral infection and got a temp of 104 and had a febral seizure. Luckily he is ok and we never had to expereince it again after that. But you really need to talk to the pediatrician and see what is causing them. There are also myths that I remember my mom telling me that now his Dr. said not to do for him with the fevers.
Good luck and hopefully they can figure out what is causing the fevers.

Hi G. -

In my experience with 3 kids, running low fevers is normal - up to about 101-102. Anything over that might indicate a stubborn viral infection and should probably be something to watch. My suggestion would be to monitor his temperture, 3 times per day, for a period of one week - when he is not running a fever. This will give you a baseline to work with. A temperature of 98.6 is an average - not written in stone as a normal temperature. A person's daily temperature can say alot about how their body systems, especially the endocrine system,work. Please feel free to contact me if you choose to follow up.

M. M. Ernsberger
Certified Herbalist

My experience, and talking to other parents with toddlers, (especially if they are in a daycare or reg. contact with other kids) is that it is not uncommon for toddlers to get sick once a month.
One thing that I have found to help is to make sure my littleones have the flu shot. I have found that the flu shot makes a significant difference.
I currently have a 7 year old and a 3 year old. My 7 year old is just now getting over her first cold of the season, and my 3 year old has not been sick a single day this winter. Chances are that she might come down with the same cold my oldest had, but I am surely not complaining.
Before I started the yearly flu shot ritual, we were visiting my family Dr. at least once a month where colds would turn into ear infections, and sinus infections.
I think another issue that helps my 3 year old is that she just loves fruits and veggies. She will choose a bowl of fruit over icecream any day. She is very concerned with eating healthy foods to grow big and strong like sister.
Hang in there. It gets better as they get older and their immume systems mature.
Take Care.Heidi

I'm not to sure. I have the same problem! My son has had a fever for the past 3 months. It it seems to come every 24 hours. We have been to 2 Ped. doctor and they both are saying and doing the same thing. Chest X-Ray, Motrin, and Tylenol every 8 for Motrin and Tylenol every 4 hours. His fever will break usually 102 or 104 temp. This will break and go away for almost 24 hours and then comes back. He will play and crawl fast, giggle just like any other normal 14 month boy. They gave him some anti-B. that didn't help. We are going crazy and really feeling for my son. I never heard of any baby having a Temp everyday of 101-103. If any one has heard of this please give us some info!

I know it can be scary our daughter is not even in any form of daycare to lower her chances of getting sick and she still seems to get fevers almost 8-10 times a month and she is only 15 months old. She suffers from febrile seizures so she will have a seizure if her temp spikes to high to fast so I immediately freak out if she is even a little warm. Usually her fevers are in the morning right when she wakes up so don't be alarmed by your son waking up warm.
My suggestion would be to give Tylenol and Motrin together they are different medicines and cannot hurt when they work together. Tylenol can be given every 4 hours and Motrin every 6 hours to reduce the fever quickly. Our doctors suggestion. Hope this helps.. K.

Fevers can be a regular occurrence as a child builds his immunity. Just a few suggestions, aside from seeing a doctor if it gets too high:

a) homeopathy works wonders to bring fevers down...look into remedies such as aconite, belladonna, chamomile, ferrum phos (all of these are available at herb stores, and there are even combination kits for kids). The tablets are small, melt in their mouth or water, and work wonders. You need to read a bit to understand how it works, but there are different types of fevers and you will read about what matches. I have helped my son's fevers break when they have been too excessive using some of these formulas.

b) Prevention is best...avoid too much wheat/dairy combos which clog the digestive system and cause heat blockages which rise to the head (sometimes a good bowel movement helps!), and fight viruses with some excellent herbal combinations for kids. Also strive to keep the back of the neck covered. Wind chills on the back of the neck cause muscles to tighten which blocks circulation to the head, resulting in dryness and heat, with some resulting fevers.

c) Herbs that help open the skin to release heat/fevers include chrysanthemum tea (you can buy sweetened chrysanthemum tea (no caffeine in chrysanthemum) in little drink boxes at the Asian stores (mix it with water to dilute some of the sugar/sweetener). Great for headaches, fevers, summer heat.

Here are the things we have done to help our kiddos. Baths after every outing or contact with other kids. Antibacterial spray for hands if we can't get to a sink to wash hands before we go home, eat, etc. A shopping cart cover to have a barrier between cart germs and baby. These have helped, but we still get sick as often as you described. One doctor has suggested that allergies to food and environment can weaken immune systems, and that if we can address allergies, we can strengthen their immune systems and will have fewer illnesses. So we are trying 2 different approaches with 2 different children. One has been doing traditional medical approach: blood test for allergens, zyrtec daily, nasonex occasionally. This has helped, but not tremendously. The next step for him (just turned 2 year old) is a full allergy evaluation with specialists. For the just turned 1 year old, we are trying an alternative medicine approach - accupressure allergy elimination technique called NAET. This actually seems to be helping with the 2 allergies we have treated so far. It seems "hokey" but it is working. Regarding the fevers, we do the ibuprophen alternating with tylenol every 4 hours for high fevers. The nurse at our ped office even said you can start with a double dose of the ibuprophen then go to the regular dose for really high fevers. We also do the warm bath as often as 4-5 times in a day if we need to. I agree that you should talk to your dr. to be sure your son isn't sick with a bacteria that needs antibiotics. And if what you are doing isn't working, you can always try a new doctor or a new approach. That's what we are deciding to do after a year of failed interventions and all too frequent illnesses. Best of luck.

I think that sounds like pretty frequent fevers. More than normal...at least compared to my kids. And a 105 fever is not something to mess around with. If I were you I would have him seen my a good pediatrician. Best of luck and let us know!

Hi G.,

Well a fever a month sounds perfectly normal especially since he's never been to daycare before. I've had to work and had my baby in daycare since she was 12 weeks old. That first year was excrutiating - fevers, RSV, another awful virus that I can't remember the name of, asthma, ear infections (6), diarrhea, etc - all from the germs of others. My pediatrician was very supportive as I was in there last winter about once a week on average. He also explained to me that this is absolutely normal and for those parents that wait to put their kids in preschool at 3 or 4 will experience the same thing at that time. Kids just need to be exposed to those germs so they can build their immune system. With the constant environment that your child has received thus far, he may be more susceptible to these germs now that he's being exposed to new things.
I would, however, worry about a 105 temperature. That is high enough to worry and possibly take to the ER. I would definitely go over all of these things with your pediatrician as they would know the best. If you are not happy with your doc, then you should change immediately.
On the good news mom, this winter was EXCEPTIONALLY better than last for us. So my doc must have been correct. My daughter only had one very bad illness this winter so that is a HUGE improvement from last year. So hang in there...it will get better but you may have a rough rest of your winter. But be sure to ask your doc about that temperature. That's really high.

Good luck and hang in there,

My daughter is now 8, but she also used to get high fevers at your son's age. There were times she would be at 105. One time she was over 105 and I was freaking out! But there was never anything seriously wrong. We gave her Motrin. The time it was over 105 I gave her a cool bath which worked great. She always "seemed" fine too, with a fever at around 101 or so. Like, she would play normally and act normally. Like I said, she is 8 now and very rarely gets sick. I think just continue doing what you do, giving medicine to reduce the fever. I always took my daughter to the doctor also, just for my own peace-of-mind!

When ever my childern statred getting fever's I wold up the garlic in ou food intake may be alittle young for this I would tell my doc about your concerns good luck C. M

Hi G.. My daughter used to get fevers every other month to every three months while she was a toddler also. The underlying cause for her was she needed tubes in her ears, she actually needed them twice. The first set fell out after 2 1/2 years, so when the fevers started again, the ENT (Ears Nose and Throat) Doctor said she needed tubes again. They fell out again when she was 8 but hasn't had problems since.
When my youngest was in daycare she tended to get sick a lot also and the doctor's always told me the same thing, she would be the healthiest kindergartener in school, that it was normal. Well that didn't help me right then and there when my baby felt hot and weak...The key to controlling the high fever is two things, First thing is, you alternate Children's Motrin and Children Tylenol until the fever is down. The Second thing you do, is try and give your toddler or child, a luke warm bath, 2-3 times a day if you have to, just give him some toys to play with the 2nd and third bath, so it seems like a fun thing. A cold bath is so tempting but only the warm bath will help him. I've had to go through many fevers and feeling your baby burn up is a crippling feeling but the two suggestions above never failed me. I hope that helps G., Best Wishes.

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