It can be highly upsetting when you or your child has a fever. Yet a great deal of anxiety may be alleviated if you know how to handle a fever in advance. Knowing whether to take a hot or cold shower for fever will help.
This article explains what to do if a kid or adult develops a fever, as well as what not to do. What indications and symptoms should prompt emergency medical attention is also covered.
What temperature constitutes a fever?
The average body temperature ranges between 36.1 C and 37.2 C, which can change throughout the day depending on your activities. Seniors tend to have lower temperatures than the young.
If you suspect a fever, you need to get a thermometer and check your temperature. A reading of 38 C or higher for your rectal, ear, and temporal artery temperature means you have a fever. Additionally, an oral temperature of 37.8 C reading or higher and an armpit temperature of 37.2 C or higher constitute a fever.
Causes of fever
The following are possible causes of fever or high body temperature:
- Some vaccinations
- Antibiotics and pharmaceuticals used to treat high blood pressure or seizures
- A cancerous growth
- Several inflammatory diseases, such as rheumatoid arthritis
- Acute heat exhaustion
- An infection caused by bacteria
- Viral diseases like colds and flu
There are situations when the cause of a fever is unknown. Frequent fevers lasting three weeks or more may be diagnosed as “fever of unknown origin” by your doctor if they cannot be explained by any recognized illness or condition.
How can I lower a fever?
You may not know what to do next or properly manage your symptoms even once you’ve determined it’s a fever. You may lower your temperature by following these simple steps:
Eat Foods That are Light and Easy to Digest
Keep a supply of small, readily digested meals on hand, even if you don’t feel like eating. Try oatmeal, soup, or rice and chicken as a starter. Don’t consume too much food to raise your temperature or induce indigestion.
Wear Lightweight Clothes to Prevent Overheating
Despite the shivers that accompany your fever, it’s best to keep your clothes loose. Wear light, breathable clothing to allow your body to acquire the ventilation it needs to lower the fever daily.
Make Sure You Get Enough Sleep!
Relaxation and adequate sleep are essential for a healthy immune system when fighting off an illness. Aim for a minimum of eight hours of sleep each night, and listen to your body’s needs throughout the day so you may take a nap when necessary.
Drink Plenty of Water
Avoid dehydration by drinking plenty of water when you’re sick. Try flavored water, teas, sports drinks, ice pops, or gelatin if you’re sick of ordinary tap water.
Take a Sponge Bath or a Bath with Lukewarm Water
Does a cold shower help a fever? This is one of the most frequently asked questions when it comes to reducing fever. Apparently, the answer is NO.
While a cold bath for fever may appear to be a good idea to place a small child in a cool bath to reduce a fever, it is not advised. By chilling the skin and inducing shivering, cold water can raise core body temperature. A hot shower with a fever is not also advisable.
So, what temperature of a shower is for fever? Doctors suggest a lukewarm bath [80°F (27°C) to 90°F (32°C)] could help you feel better. You must however properly dry your hair after bath as leaving it wet may aggravate the problem.
If taking a bath is your last priority during fever, you may instead apply moist washcloths to your forehead or wrists. It works just as well as a warm bath.
Take Over-The-Counter Anti-Fever Medications
Adults can take aspirin, naproxen, and ibuprofen. OTC pain relievers, including acetaminophen tylenol, may also serve as fever reducers. If your fever worsens or persists for more than three days, you should consult your doctor immediately.
Things to avoid
If you have a fever, DO NOT:
Engage in rigorous activities.
It can only aggravate the problem and cause discomfort.
You may not need medication to bring down a temperature. In the event of a high temperature (more than 100.2 degrees Fahrenheit) or a feeling of extreme exhaustion, you should see a doctor.
Always take an antibiotic.
It may not work every time. Antibiotics are only effective when a bacterial infection is the source of the illness.
Consult your doctor for an antibiotic prescription.
Starving depletes a person’s vitality and makes them feel weak. It thereby makes them less able to fight off diseases.
Wrap yourself with a blanket or a poncho to keep warm.
It won’t make the fever go away, but it could raise the body temperature.
How long does it take for a fever to resolve?
Fevers typically last for a couple of days. If your fever is caused by a virus, expect it to last up to 4 days. However, this can be reduced depending on the type of fever you have as well as the medication you take.
Why do fevers spike at night?
During the night, it is common that you may feel weaker and sicker. Your body has lower levels of cortisol in the blood, which pushes white blood cells to work and fight infections that hit your body. This results for symptoms to take place such as sweating, congestion, chills, and fever.
When Should I Worry About a Fever?
The occurrence of fever varies depending on your age. Kids and babies require immediate medical care when it comes to fever, even with slight symptoms.
When Is a Fever Too High in Adults?
If your thermometer reads 39.4 C or higher, this means you have a high-grade fever and you should seek immediate medical care. During this time, the body may experience severe symptoms such as headaches and chills.
Fever in Children Over Age 2
Remember that children need attention during slight symptoms of fever, even when they show signs of being active. If your kid has a temperature of 39 C and up, you must seek medical care as soon as possible.
Fever in Infants and Babies (Up to Age 2)
Babies have a normal temperature of 36.4 C. If the temperature reads 38 C or higher, you need to go to the ER for treatment to prevent the symptoms such as colds and coughing from getting worse.
When to See a Doctor
See your doctor if you’re experiencing any of the following symptoms:
- Acetaminophen and ibuprofen are ineffective at bringing down a temperature.
- Allergic reactions
- Weight loss
- Other symptoms include disorientation, neck stiffness, and light sensitivity.
- Fever that lasts more than three to five days is considered a medical emergency.
A fever can be a symptom of a medical emergency, although extremely rare.
If you have a fever and exhibit any of the following symptoms, call 911 or go to the nearest emergency room right away.
- A severe headache
- Holding fluids down is a challenge
- Fever is accompanied with chest discomfort or shortness of breath
- Urinary tract discomfort
- Constant and excruciating cramping in the stomach
Do Not Ignore a Fever
Adults often don’t need to worry about a fever on their own. Your body’s response to an infection or other sickness is a marker of this symptom.
Nonetheless, there are rare instances where a high or prolonged fever may indicate a dangerous disease. There’s a chance you’ll need to call a doctor quickly.
Fever should not be ignored. Rest and hydration are essential for a speedy recovery. Consult your physician if you develop a fever that persists for more than three days or if you experience any other troubling symptoms.
You should notify your doctor if you have a fever, especially if you have a long-term medical condition or were recently treated for a serious disease. Contact Kingwood ER for minor and major emergencies.