Answering Questions About Fever

Fever is a common symptom of many underlying conditions from a minor cold to a major infectious disease.  As a general rule, fever is not considered dangerous less than 103 F unless there are other serious symptoms present.

Some serious symptoms that would warrant a call to the doctor are:  severe headache, stiff neck, very swollen throat, unusual skin rash, extreme sensitivity to light, constant vomiting or if the fever lasts more than three days in an adult.

In infants three months old or younger, any variation in temperature above 100 F or below 98 F should signal the need for a medical consultation.  Older infants and young children with fever can be given acetaminophen in the dosage recommended by their physician or shown on the package if the fever is over 102 F.  If a child’s fever does not respond to medication and lasts for more than one day it would be wise to contact a doctor. No child under 18 should ever be given aspirin for a fever.  Aspirin can cause a serious side effect called Reye’s syndrome which could be fatal.

If serious infection or disease has been ruled out, the best treatment for a fever may be almost no treatment at all.  Medication to reduce fever may interfere with the body’s natural healing mechanisms.  The immune system raises the body temperature to kill infections and lowering the temperature with medications may cause the infection to take longer to heal.

Any fever, whether you choose to use medication or not, should be treated with as much bed rest as possible.  The body needs rest to heal and activity will only raise the body temperature.  Encourage the patient to sleep and keep them as comfortable as possible.

To prevent dehydration which may complicate a fever, urge the patient to drink as much healthy liquid as possible.  Clear broths and soups are nourishing but easy on the digestive system.  Fruit juices of all kinds help rehydrate and some juices like lemonade or cranberry can be served warm and spiced.  Commercial products are available to replace lost fluids and electrolytes and are advised for infants and very young children.

Caution: Please use Home Remedies after Proper Research and Guidance. You accept that you are following any advice at your own risk and will properly research or consult healthcare professional.
This entry was posted in Q&A