Knowledge and Concerns of Parents Regarding Childhood Fever at a Public Health Clinic in Kuching, East Malaysia
Keywords:Fever, Child, Parents, Knowledge, Concerns
BACKGROUND: Parental anxiety regarding fever may be unwarranted as most cases are owing to self-limiting causes.
AIM: To assess the level of knowledge and concerns regarding childhood fever among parents with young children in a public health clinic in Kuching, East Malaysia.
METHODS: This cross-sectional study was conducted among parents recruited from a maternal and child health clinic, with children aged 6 months to 6 years. The participants completed a self-administered questionnaire regarding their knowledge and concerns about childhood fever. Descriptive statistical analyses were performed, and associations between dependent and independent variables were determined.
RESULTS: Only 26.1% of participants were found to have good knowledge. Knowledge regarding childhood fever was significantly associated with parentâ€™s ethnicity, education level, and household income. About 72% of parents were always worried about their childâ€™s illness. Three major reasons for their concerns were persistently rising temperature; discomfort caused by the fever, and feared complications of fever.
CONCLUSION: Excessive parental anxiety due to poor knowledge and misconceptions about fever may lead to poor quality of life and inappropriate management of fever. Healthcare providers may help by educating parents about fever and serious signs that indicate the need to seek healthcare advice.
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