Fever: Causes, Symptoms, Diagnosis, and Treatment

Fever is an increase in body temperature that is often caused by an illness. Conditions can also be a sign that something unusual is happening in your body. Check out the causes of fever, fever symptoms, until the full fever medicine below.

What Is Fever?

Fever is usually associated with physical discomfort and many people feel better when this condition is treated. Many experts believe that the condition is the body’s natural defense against infection.

In general, fever is a condition that is not considered dangerous, but hyperthermia can cause a dangerous rise in body temperature. This condition can be caused by extreme temperatures associated with heat injuries such as heatstroke or side effects from certain medications.

Children with this condition accompanying symptoms such as lethargy, fussiness, poor appetite, sore throat, cough, earache, vomiting, and diarrhea are important things to consult with a doctor.

Normal body temperature for each person can vary and can fluctuate depending on time. Body temperature in the morning tends to be lower, while higher temperatures occur in the afternoon and evening. Other factors, such as menstrual cycles or intense exercise, can also affect body temperature.

In general, babies experience this condition when their body temperature exceeds 38 ° Celsius. A child has a fever when their temperature exceeds 37.5 ° Celsius. While adults are said to have a fever if their body temperature exceeds 37.2-37.5 ° Celsius.

Causes of Fever

Fever occurs when the body’s immune response is triggered by pyrogens (fever-producing substances). In general, pyrogen comes from sources outside the body, but when this condition occurs it will stimulate the production of additional pyrogen in the body. Pyrogen signals the hypothalamus to increase body temperature.

However, other pyrogens can be produced by the body, usually in response to inflammation. This condition is referred to as cytokines (also called endogenous pyrogen). Pyrogens originating from outside the body include:

  • Virus.
  • Bacteria.
  • Mushroom.
  • Drugs.
  • Poison.

Fever can also be caused by a number of other factors, including:

  • Infections such as strep throat, flu, chicken pox, or pneumonia.
  • Arthritis.
  • Too much sun.
  • Strenuous exercise.
  • Dehydration.
  • Silicosis, a type of lung disease caused by long-term exposure to silica dust.
  • Amphetamine abuse.
  • Alcohol consumption.

Fever Symptoms

Basically, fever occurs when body temperature rises above the normal range. The following are common symptoms of fever, including:

  • Feel cold
  • Shaking.
  • lack of appetite.
  • Dehydration.
  • Depression.
  • Hyperesthesia or increased sensitivity to pain.
  • Lethargy.
  • Concentration problems.
  • Excessive sleepiness.
  • Excessive sweating.

When is the Right Time to See a Doctor?

Fever itself may not be a reason to worry. However, there are several conditions when you need to seek medical help such as:


Fever in babies is something to be worried about compared to children and adults. Call your doctor immediately if your child:

  • Age under 3 months and have rectal temperatures above 38 ° Celsius.
  • Age between 3 to 6 months and has rectal temperatures up to 38.9 ° Celsius.
  • Age between 6 to 24 months and has a rectal temperature of more than 38.9 ° Celsius and last longer than one day. If your child also has other symptoms such as runny nose, cough or diarrhea, see a doctor immediately.


Call your doctor immediately if your child:

  • Listless, irritable, repeatedly vomiting, severe headache, stomach ache, or have other symptoms that cause significant discomfort.
  • Lasts more than three days.
  • Lack of eye contact with you.

Ask your pediatrician for guidance in special circumstances, such as a child with an immune system problem or with a pre-existing disease.


Contact a doctor if your body temperature is more than 39.4 ° Celsius. Seek medical attention immediately if any of these signs or symptoms accompany:

  • Severe headache.
  • Unusual skin rashes, especially if the rash worsens quickly.
  • Exceptional sensitivity to bright light.
  • Neck stiffness and pain when bowing head forward.
  • Confusion.
  • Persistent vomiting.
  • Difficulty breathing or chest pain.
  • Stomach pain or pain when urinating.
  • Convulsions.

Fever diagnosis

Diagnosing this condition is very easy by measuring the body temperature using a thermometer. If when the measurement shows a high number, it means you have a fever.

Someone is said to have a fever if:

  • The temperature in the mouth is more than 37.7 ° Celsius.
  • The temperature in the rectum is more than 37.5-38.3 ° Celsius.
  • The temperature under the arm or inside the ear is more than 37.2 ° Celsius

Because this condition is a sign of disease, if the doctor has confirmed an increase in body temperature, several other diagnostic tests may be performed depending on other signs and symptoms, including blood tests, urine tests, X-rays, or other scans.

Fever Treatment

How to reduce fever effectively? Basically there are no special treatments to reduce body temperature. Mild fever can even help reduce the number of microbes that cause disease.

The following are ways to overcome the fever that can be done, including:

  • Home Care

Low-grade fever without other symptoms usually does not require medical treatment. Drinking fluids and resting in bed are usually enough to fight this condition.

When this condition is accompanied by mild symptoms such as general discomfort or dehydration, make sure the room temperature is made as comfortable as possible, take a shower using warm water, and consume lots of fluids.

  • Non Prescription Fever Medication

Doctors can recommend over-the-counter medications such as acetaminophen or ibuprofen. Use these medicines according to label instructions or as directed by your doctor.

High doses or long-term use of acetaminophen or ibuprofen can cause liver or kidney damage. If the child’s fever remains high after drug administration, consult a doctor immediately.

Don’t give aspirin to children, because it can trigger Reye’s syndrome.

  • Prescription Fever Medication

Your doctor may prescribe antibiotics, especially if he suspects a bacterial infection, such as pneumonia or strep throat. But keep in mind that antibiotics don’t treat viral infections.

The best treatment for most minor illnesses caused by viruses is rest and consumption of plenty of fluids.

Meanwhile, if your child is under 28 days old, hospital treatment may be needed. Fever experienced at this age can indicate a serious infection that requires intravenous (IV) medication and monitoring over time.

Fever Prevention

The following are some tips that can help you to prevent fever from occurring, including:

  • Wash your hands often and teach your children to do the same, especially before eating, after using the toilet, after spending a lot of time outdoors or around someone who is sick, after stroking animals, and during trips by public transportation.
  • Bring hand sanitizer when you don’t have access to running water and use soap.
  • Try not to touch the nose, mouth or eyes too often, because this is the main way viruses and bacteria can enter the body and cause infection.
  • Cover your mouth when coughing and nose when sneezing, and teach children to do the same. If possible, turn away from others when coughing or sneezing to avoid germs that rub off on them.
  • Avoid sharing cups, water bottles and cutlery with others.


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Back to top button