The average normal body temperature is 98.6°F. For babies and children, a temperature of 100.4°F (38°C) is considered a fever. “Fever Phobia” is what pediatricians call this intense fear that many parents have of fever in a child. But fever is only a symptom, not something to fear. Fever can’t hurt a kid. In fact, there are only a few circumstances in which we actually are concerned about a fever at all.

Most of the time, the height of the fever is of no interest to us. That means that there is no such thing as a fever that is “too high.” Fever won’t cook a kid’s brain. There is no “magic number” that means parents should rush to the hospital or doctor’s office. Honestly. However, there are a few rules about when a kid with a fever should see the doctor, depending on his age, health and other symptoms. In If Your Kid Eats This Book, there is actually a whole chapter dedicated to knowing when a kid with a fever needs to be seen by the doctor and when you can stay home. And you’ll learn why Grandma thinks fevers cause seizures.