A Fever Can Damage a Child's Brain?

Generally, a child's fever is caused by an infection process in the body. Starting from a respiratory tract infection that can be accompanied by symptoms of cough or runny nose, until a gastrointestinal infection that can be followed by a bowel movement or diarrhea.
If the child has a fever, it certainly makes both parents become worried. Even fever can not infrequently cause seizures in children, which is better known as febrile seizures.

Febrile seizures are a condition of seizures when the child's body temperature rises above 38 degrees Celsius without any signs of interference in the central nervous and brain. It certainly makes both parents more anxious. Regardless of whether the fever can affect and even damage the child's brain?

The link between fever and brain damage

Normal body temperature in children and infants ranges from 36.6 to 37.2 degrees Celsius. If the body temperature is more than 41 degrees Celsius, this could potentially cause damage to various body tissues. But actually, infrequent infections can cause an increase in temperature to above 41 degrees Celsius.

In one study, 49% of specialist doctors of children in the United States consider that seizures are harmful effects of fever and 22% of them believe that brain damage can occur due to febrile seizures are typical.

However, in most cases, fever in children does not harm brain tissue, nor does it cause epilepsy. Moreover, usually the body has a mechanism to lower the temperature by itself when a fever occurs.

When fever, body temperature is regulated by a temperature control center located in one part of the brain called the hypothalamus. The temperature control center will balance the production of heat in the body by expelling heat from the body. Thus, body temperature does not keep increasing.

In addition, a study states that fever actually provides benefits to the body. Why? Fever is one of the efforts to fight the infection of germs that occur in the body.

Other studies have suggested that brain damage may occur due to a very high fever to temperatures exceeding 42 degrees Celsius. However, it is very rare that temperature rise can reach that level. In addition, fever caused by infectious processes is believed to cause no damage to the brain.

In fact, the body temperature may rise as high as when the outside air temperature is very hot. For example, if you leave a child in a car in hot weather, there is a chance that his temperature could reach 42 degrees or more.

So fever is just one symptom that your child can experience at any time, and a fever caused by an infectious process is believed to cause no damage to the brain. Before going to the doctor to determine the cause of the fever, you should immediately lower the child's body temperature. For example with the provision of febrifuge (antipyretic), warm compresses, sufficient fluid intake, and make sure the child uses thin clothes.

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