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Fever in A Newborn

Fever in a Newborn

The system that controls body temperature is not well developed in a newborn. Call your baby's doctor immediately if your baby is younger than 3 months old and has a rectal temperature of 100.4°F (38°C) or higher. 

Infection

A fever is common when an adult has an infection. In newborns, fever may or may not occur with an infection. A newborn may actually have a low body temperature with an infection. He or she may also have changes in activity, feeding, or skin color.

Overheating

While it is important to keep a baby from becoming chilled, a baby can also become overheated with many layers of clothing and blankets.
An overheated baby may have a hot, red, or flushed face, and may be restless. To avoid overheating:

  • Keep your baby away from any source of heat. For example, a room heater, fireplace, heating vent, or direct sunlight.

  • Keep your home at about 72°F to 75°F.

  • Dress your baby comfortably. He or she doesn't need more clothing than you do.

  • Cars can get very hot. Be extra careful when dressing your baby to go for a car ride.

Low fluid intake or dehydration

Newborns may not take in enough breast milk or formula. This may cause an increase in body temperature. If you think your baby isn't eating enough, either breast milk or formula, call his or her health care provider. Make sure you know how to check your baby's temperature and have a thermometer. Call your baby's health care provider right away if he or she has a fever.

Reviewed Date: 09-23-2014

Fiebre en el Recién Nacido
Neonatology/NICU
Dr. Rachel Armentrout
Dr. W. Thomas Bass
Dr. Deborah Devendorf
Dr. Susannah Dillender
Dr. C W Gowen
Dr. Glen Green
Dr. M Gary Karlowicz
Dr. Edward Karotkin
Dr. Jamil Khan
Dr. Michael Kochan
Health Tips
Taking Baby's Temperature
Diseases & Conditions
Anatomy of the Newborn Skull
Assessments for Newborn Babies
Baby's Care After Birth
Breast Milk Collection and Storage
Breastfeeding and Delayed Milk Production
Breastfeeding at Work
Breastfeeding Difficulties - Baby
Breastfeeding Difficulties - Mother
Breastfeeding Your Baby
Breastfeeding Your Premature Baby
Breastfeeding: Getting Started
Breathing Problems
Care of the Baby in the Delivery Room
Caring for Babies in the NICU
Chromosomal Abnormalities
Clubfoot
Common Conditions and Complications
Common Procedures
Congenital Heart Disease Index
Digestive Disorders in Children
Fever in Children
Getting Ready at Home
Getting to Know Your New Baby
Hearing Loss in Babies
Hearing Screening Tests for Newborns
Heart Disorders
High-Risk Newborn Blood Disorders
Infant Feeding Guide
Infant of Diabetic Mother
Infant Play
Infant Sleep
Infection in Babies
Inguinal Hernia in Children
Latching On or Sucking
Male Conditions
Measuring a Baby's Temperature
Megaureter
Micropenis
Neurological Disorders in the Newborn
Newborn Appearance
Newborn Care
Newborn Complications
Newborn Crying
Newborn Health Assessment
Newborn Measurements
Newborn Multiples
Newborn Screening Tests
Newborn Senses
Newborn Warning Signs
Newborn-Reflexes
Newborn-Sleep Patterns
Normal Newborn Behaviors and Activities
Online Resources - Normal Newborn
Physical Exam of the Newborn
Preparing for Your New Baby
Preparing the Family
Skin Color Changes
Substance Exposure
Taking Your Baby Home
The Growing Child: Newborn
The Respiratory System in Babies
Thrush
Transient Tachypnea of the Newborn
Umbilical Cord Care
Vision and Hearing
Vision Overview
Warmth and Temperature Regulation
When to Call Your Physician

Disclaimer: This information is not intended to substitute or replace the professional medical advice you receive from your child's physician. The content provided on this page is for informational purposes only, and was not designed to diagnose or treat a health problem or disease. Please consult your child's physician with any questions or concerns you may have regarding a medical condition.