Many parents ask whether it is okay to alternate Tylenol (acetaminophen) and Motrin (ibuprofen) when their child has a fever. This concern usually stems from a parent who worries that the fever is dangerous. It's not. It's just the body's way of mounting an immune response. We promise your child will not self-destruct if he has a fever.
Is it okay to alternate fever reducing medicine? Yes. Is it helpful? No. A new study from the British Medical Journal looked at this question and found the following results: Giving ibuprofen AND acetaminophen in rotating doses over a 24 hour period only brought the body temperature down for 1.5 hours more than giving just ibuprofen around the clock for 24 hours.
Since it doesn't make a huge difference, we continue to suggest the recommendations in both our Baby 411 and Toddler 411 books: For babies over six months of age, stick with ibuprofen for fever, dosed every 6-8 hours. It works better and lasts longer than acetaminophen. And there is really no need or use to alternate two fever reducing medications.