When do you have a fever? – Pay attention to your symptoms!
Written by Marion on June 10, 2019
When does one speak of fever?
It is normal for your body temperature to fluctuate throughout the day. But when does one have a fever? Generally, if you are an adult and your temperature is above 38.0 ° C, you have a fever.
Fever is the way your body fights an illness. Although it is possible to have a fever with no known cause, it is usually caused by a virus or bacterial infection.
But before you start looking for a thermometer, you should take stock of your symptoms. Are you sweating? Are you tired Symptoms of fever can become more difficult in infants and young children.
To the common symptoms of fever include:
- a headache
- Warm forehead
- General feeling of weakness
- Aching eyes
- Swollen lymph nodes
Also Infants or young children, who have a fever can experience:
- Greater irritability than usual
- Reddened skin
- difficulties swallowing
- Refusal to eat, drink or be breastfed
In severe cases a fever may appear:
- Excessive fatigue
- Severe pain in other parts of the body
- Unusual vaginal discharge
- Painful urination
- skin rash
- Diarrheal disease
Read on to learn about the different ways to check your temperature, tips on how to lower your fever, and more.
How to measure your temperature
There are several ways to measure your temperature. Each of them has its advantages and disadvantages.
With the help of oral thermometers, your temperature is measured orally. You usually have a digital display, a beep when the measurement is complete, and you can even be warned when the temperature is high enough to be considered a fever.
Oral temperature measurement is a better option for you than for children and infants. This is because in order to get an accurate measurement, you need to keep your mouth closed while the thermometer is held in place for at least 20 seconds. This cannot be easy for children and infants.
To use a mouth thermometer:
- Avoid eating or drinking 15 minutes before using your thermometer. This is because food and drinks can change the temperature in your mouth and affect reading
- Hold the thermometer under your tongue for at least 20 seconds before removing it. It should be as close to the center of your mouth as possible. This may vary depending on the brand, so you should follow the instructions for your thermometer
- Disinfect your thermometer after use with antibacterial soap and warm water
Measurement on the ear
Ear thermometers measure the temperature of the middle ear membrane. This is called the eardrum. Although they are often used by doctors, you can also use an ear thermometer at home.
An ear thermometer uses a digital display and provides results in seconds. Babies older than 6 months, children and adults can use one. Because of its speed, it is often an easy way for parents to use it on young children. A 2012 study found that this type of thermometer is as effective as a mercury glass thermometer.
To use a digital ear thermometer:
- Hold the thermometer to your ear with the infrared sensor facing the ear canal.
- If your thermometer is properly seated, turn it on. Most models will beep when the measurement is complete.
Do not insert an ear thermometer in your ear canal. Because the thermometer uses infrared radiation, it can show a value when the sensor is aimed at your ear canal.
Rectal temperature measurement
You can determine the rectal temperature by carefully inserting a thermometer into your rectum. A standard thermometer, like how you would use it, is enough to measure your temperature. However, you should never use the same thermometer orally that you used for your gut.
Instead, buy two thermometers and label each one for their use. You can also buy a rectal thermometer with a small tip that you can use for your baby, for example. It can minimize the risk of injury to your baby.
A 2015 study found that rectal temperature is more accurate than oral or ear-based.
Rectal thermometers are the best choice for small children, especially for small babies under 6 months. This is because you will be able to get a more accurate reading. Many pediatricians will ask you to measure a rectal temperature before visiting an infant for a fever.
To measure a rectal temperature:
Turn your baby upside down and remove the diaper.
- Carefully insert the tip into his rectum. Don’t use it more than 1.2cm – 2.5cm
- Turn on the thermometer and hold it in place for about 20 seconds
- When the measurement is complete, carefully remove the thermometer
Always clean a rectal thermometer after use with rubbing alcohol. You can also choose to use disposable thermometer sleeves, especially if the thermometer is used by more than one person.
If your baby moves a lot during the measurement, the results can be very inaccurate.
Measurement without a thermometer
If you don’t have a thermometer, there are also less precise ways you can detect a fever.
The touch method is the most popular, but it is also the least accurate. This is especially the case if you diagnose yourself.
If you use the touch method to diagnose a fever in someone else, first touch your own skin and then compare the two temperatures. If the other person is much hotter than you, they may have a fever.
You can also try pinching the skin on the back of your hand to look for signs of dehydration. If the skin does not snap back quickly, it can dry out. Dehydration can be a sign of fever.
When do you start or speak of fever?
You have a fever if your rectal temperature is 38 ° C or your mouth temperature is 37.8 ° C. In adults and children over 3 months, a temperature of 39 ° C or higher is considered a high fever.
If your baby is 0 to 3 months old and has a rectal temperature of 38 ° C, see your pediatrician immediately. Fever in young babies can be a very serious proposition.
If your child is between 3 months and 3 years old and has a temperature of 39 ° C, then call your pediatrician immediately. This is considered a high fever.
Everyone is concerned about a temperature above 40 ° C or below 35 ° C. In this case, you should contact your doctor immediately.
How to lower the fever
If your fever is not the result of an underlying condition such as infection, or fever in a small baby or child, medical treatment is usually not required. Here’s what you can do to fight the fever.
What to look out for in fever
- Verme >You should take a cold bath or shower?
Cold water can temporarily help lower your temperature, but it can cause chills. If you shiver, your body will vibrate in a very short time to raise your body temperature, so you can actually cause your temperature to rise when you take a cold bath or shower.
Instead, try dampening your body with warm water with a sponge. When the water evaporates, your body begins to cool down. However, if the sponging causes chills, interrupt or raise the temperature of the water.
When to see a doctor
Your fever will almost always subside by itself.
However, there are also cases in which medical care is necessary for adults. If your temperature exceeds 40 ° C or does not respond to antipyretic medication, you should consult a doctor.
In infants up to 3 months and younger, see a doctor immediately if they have a rectal temperature of 38 ° C or higher. For children between 3 months and 3 years old, you should call your pediatrician if they are at a temperature of 39 ° C or more.
Frequently asked question & answer
When should I treat my fever instead of letting it go??
Unless you have an illness that your doctor has told you otherwise. Fever is treated for well-being, not for medical reasons. A fever should only be treated if you feel bad. Fever isn’t dangerous – it’s how your body fights infections. If your body hurts and you don’t feel well, take acetaminophen or ibuprofen. However, there is no reason to treat your fever just to lower your body temperature.
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