Health professionals are also concerned about the increasing number of parents who give their children alternate doses of paracetamol and ibuprofen without leaving sufficient gaps between them.
"Our review found that overdosing with ibuprofen is now a particular concern, both in terms of dosage and frequency" says nurse researcher Anne Walsh from Queensland University of Technology in Australia.
"We also discovered that some parents are giving their children one fever-reducing drug and then trying another type within a few hours if the first one doesn't have the desired result."
The Australian research team reviewed more than 70 studies published worldwide since 1980 to see how parental attitudes and practices had changed when it came to treating common childhood fevers.
They found that:
The researchers also discovered that parents consistently treat childhood fevers based on inaccurate temperature readings and suggest that they would be better off focussing on their child's general well-being rather than just how hot they are.
"Parents knowledge about normal body temperature and what constitutes a feverish temperature is poor" adds Anne Walsh, from the University's Insti
Contact: Annette Whibley
Blackwell Publishing Ltd.