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When To Go To ER For Fever?

When To Go To ER For Fever

A fever is not just an ailment in itself but is often an indication of the body’s battle against infections. 

While a slight rise in body temperature isn’t usually a cause for concern, there are times when a fever could indicate a serious medical condition that requires immediate medical attention. 

This blog will serve as a comprehensive guide on understanding when to seek emergency care for a fever.

What is a fever?

A fever can be defined as a temporary increase in the body’s temperature, often due to an illness. It’s a sign that your body is fighting off an infection. 

The average normal body temperature varies between individuals and throughout the day, but it’s typically about 98.6°F (37°C).

What are fever symptoms?

Focus to the thermometer and The Asian woman is sick.

Symptoms of fever can vary depending on the underlying condition causing it. Besides increased body temperature, other common symptoms include sweating, shivering, headache, muscle aches, loss of appetite, dehydration, general weakness, and sometimes a feeling of cold when you are hot.

What causes a fever?

Viral, bacterial, or fungal infections like the common cold, flu, or COVID-19 often cause fever. Other possible causes can include certain medicines, severe trauma or injury, cancer, autoimmune diseases, and illegal drugs.

How long does a fever last?

The duration of a fever can vary significantly. Most fevers related to viral illnesses may last for 2-3 days. If a fever continues for days or keeps returning, this could signify a more serious health condition. You should consult your healthcare provider if your fever persists.

What Fever Is Too High Or When Is A Fever Dangerous?

A fever is generally considered a body temperature of 100.4°F (38°C) or higher in adults. A body temperature above 103°F (39.4°C) is considered a high fever. If a fever exceeds 104°F (40°C), a dangerous temperature for fever, or lasts longer than a couple of days, it’s wise to seek professional medical attention.

What are the risk factors for a fever?

Various internal and external factors can increase your risk of developing a fever. These include a compromised immune system, age (infants and elderly are at higher risk), exposure to certain environments (like hospitals or nursing homes), and lifestyle factors (such as poor nutrition or hygiene). Knowing these risk factors can help you take appropriate precautions to prevent fevers.

Effective Home Fever Remedies

When dealing with a fever, the body requires all the support it can get as it battles against invading organisms. 

Here are some home remedies you can explore to alleviate the discomfort and help your body recover faster.

1. Rest

Your body needs extra energy to combat infection, so adequate rest can significantly aid recovery. Take naps, sleep longer, or stay in bed and conserve energy.

2. Drinking plenty of water

Staying hydrated helps lower body temperature and replaces fluids lost through sweating. Water is an excellent choice, but fruit juices or broths can replenish electrolytes.

3. Sponging

Wetting your skin can help reduce fever. Dip a washcloth in lukewarm water, wring it out, and sponge areas like your armpits, feet, hands, and groin to reduce body temperature.

4. Take a Lukewarm Bath

Just like sponging, a lukewarm bath can help bring body temperature down. Avoid cold baths, which may make you shiver and trigger a worse fever response.

5. Take OTC Medication

Over-the-counter medications like ibuprofen and acetaminophen can help in reducing fever. Always remember to follow the instructions on the package for the correct dosage.

6. Apply a Cool Compress

Applying a cold compress on your forehead can provide a quick cooling effect and relief from discomfort.

7. Drink Bone Broth

Bone broth is rich in vitamins, minerals, and amino acids for optimal immune function. It also aids hydration and can provide calming comfort.

8. Eat Healthy Meals

Eat balanced meals with protein, fresh fruits, and vegetables to strengthen your immune system and speed up recovery.

9. Try Herbal Remedies

Certain herbs like elderberry, ginger, and echinacea are known for their antiviral and fever-reducing properties.

10. Wear Comfortable clothing

Light, breathable clothing can help your body cool down and sweat more effectively, reducing your fever.

When To Be Concerned About A Fever?

Stressed mother talking to doctor, checking child's temperature by holding hand on kid forehead.

Recognizing when a fever requires medical intervention is crucial. 

Here are some guidelines to keep in mind:

Infants and toddlers

For infants under three months old with a dangerous fever temperature of 100.4°F or higher, seek immediate medical attention. For toddlers, get immediate help if a high fever persists for more than 24 hours.

Children

Children may need immediate care if they repeatedly vomit, have severe headaches, neck stiffness, rashes, or the fever persists for more than 24 hours despite at-home treatments.

Adults

Adults should head to the ER if they experience severe symptoms like chest pain, difficulty breathing, confusion, severe vomiting, or if a high fever lasts more than two days without improvement.

How is a fever treated in the ER?

Pediatrician doctor examining sick child in face mask.

In the ER, fever treatment is usually targeted towards tackling the underlying cause first. This can involve intravenous fluids, antibiotics, or antiviral drugs. Cooling blankets or baths may also be used to reduce body temperature.

Drawing Vital Conclusions

Looking after your health and being well-prepared in emergencies are essential life skills. Ignoring persistent high fever can sometimes lead to severe complications, which can be avoided with timely professional help. When in doubt, trust Aether Health, a fever emergency room located in Pearland, TX 77584. Offering round-the-clock medical support with a superior, experienced team, we are well-equipped to handle any emergency, including non-immediate, urgent, semi-urgent, and non-urgent. Looking after your health just got easier with Aether Health! Contact us today!

Last updated on January 30, 2024
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