What is fever? A thorough understanding of fever

When our body temperature is high, this is called fever. Fever itself is a symptom, chronic fever is a sign of hidden diseases, read this article to know more.

Fever is the temporary elevated temperature of our body. It is also known as hyperthermia, and can affect people of all ages and gender. However, fever can resolve on its own, but it can be a symptom or sign of an underlying condition.  

What is fever? 

Our body’s normal temperature is 98 to 100℉ or 36 to 37℃. If a person’s body temperature  rises above these parameters, then it will be considered as a fever. 

Why does fever occur? 

Many reasons can contribute to a rise in temperature, however, fever usually occurs when your immune system is trying to fight with an infection or illness. Generally, fever goes away on its own, but sometimes continuous or prolonged fever can be a sign of serious health complications.  

What are the symptoms of fever? 

If your temperature rises, you may experience symptoms such as:

  • Shivers or chills
  • Headache
  • Sweating
  • Low appetite
  • Dehydration
  • Muscle pain
  • Body ache
  • Lack of energy
  • Difficulty in concentrating
  • Irritability

What are the causes of fever? 

Fever or hyperthermia takes place when hypothalamus (a part of our brain that balances body temperature) elevates our body temperature, then we feel chills and shivers. Multiple factors can cause this high body temperature. Some known causes are: 

  • COVID-19
  • Vaccines
  • Pneumonia
  • Chickenpox
  • Silicosis
  • Rheumatoid arthritis
  • Crohn’s disease
  • Blood clotting
  • Bacterial infection
  • Gastrointestinal infection
  • Skin infection
  • Urinary tract infection
  • Side effects of certain medications
  • Food poisoning
  • Alcohol withdrawal
  • Heatstroke
  • Extreme sunburn

Diagnosis of a fever: 

As mentioned before, fever is itself a symptom and not a condition. Therefore, not only a medical professional, you can also check your body temperature through a thermometer to detect fever. 

A doctor will give you a certain antibiotic and suggest that you take plenty of rest to reduce the high body temperature. However, if the fever does not go away then your doctor will examine your symptoms and prescribe you a fever profile test to determine the underlying cause of it. 

What is a fever profile test? 

A fever profile includes a bunch of tests that will examine nearly 28 parameters to determine the exact cause of this fever. As this profile test includes a complete blood count, hence, it will detect any existing infections as well. 

A medical professional will only collect a sample of blood to perform the test. You are not required to do any fasting for this test. You can find this profile test at any diagnostic center. However, fever profile test thyrocare is the best package out there, and they offer home samples collection. Fever profile test price is also very affordable at this diagnostic center.

What is the treatment of a fever? 

As mentioned earlier, fever is a result of our immune system fighting off invading bacteria or viruses, this type of fever usually goes away on its own within a few days. However, doctors usually prescribe antipyretics and nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs to treat a high fever. Aspirin might also help in fever but not suitable for children and people who take blood thinners. 

The most important thing, doctors mostly focus on the reason behind the fever. Fever is a symptom itself, because it is nearly the earliest symptom of a disease or infection. Hence, your doctor may give you further tests to determine the cause and then will treat the reason accordingly. 

How long a fever may last? 

There are 3 stages of a fever. An acute fever may last for 7 days, and a subacute fever may last for 14 days. A persistent or chronic fever may also last for about 14 days. A fever which lasts more than a week, then it has unknown origin and needs serious medical observation. 

How can you bring down a fever at home? 

There are a few ways to cure fever at home, but the way depends on the type of fever you have. If you have a low-grade fever then it may not require much medical treatment, taking a lot of rest and drinking plenty of water will help to bring down the temperature to normal. 

However, if one has a high fever and has some other discomforting symptoms as well then you can do the undermentioned things to bring down the high temperature to normal.  

  • Make sure the room temperature is normal where the person is resting. 
  • Give a sponge bath to the person with lukewarm water. 
  • Make sure to give the person ibuprofen or acetaminophen at times. 
  • Make sure the person is well hydrated, and help them to drink a lot of water timely. 

How would you know if a fever needs emergency medical care? 

A fever needs immediate medical care, if the person experience: 

  • Inability to talk and walk
  • Confusion
  • Breathing problem
  • Chest pain
  • Hallucinations
  • Seizures
  • Inconsolable cry (in children)

If you notice these symptoms in your child or close one with fever, then call help immediately.

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