A fever is a temporary high temperature. It shows that something not ordinary is going on in your body, or may indicate an infection.
The normal temperature is 37 C. (98.6 F). If you have over 37 C, you have a fever. It usually goes away after a few days. Generally, it is a concern if the temperature reaches over 39 C or higher.
The existence of fever shows that your body is fighting against something, and thus it “trains” your immune system. Therefore, sometimes it is better to leave it untreated, so that your body can fight off.
Fever has the following symptoms, depending on its cause:
- Shivering, cold extremities when the body temperature is rising
- Muscle aches and weakness
- Loss of appetite
High temperature can cause the following symptoms:
Fever occurs in the hypothalamus of the brain, which is also called the body's "thermostat".
There may be numerous causes for fever; however, the most common are:
- A virus or bacterial infection
- Inflammatory conditions
- Some immunizations
- A malignant tumor
- Sunburn, etc.
There are cases when the cause of the fever may be of unknown origin.
Complications of a fever may include:
- Severe dehydration
- Febrile seizure, in younger children, when there could be also loss of consciousness. Emergency medical assistance is necessary.
General advice for prevention of fever is hygiene (washing hands regularly, especially before taking a meal, or after use of public transportation), regular behavior when coughing or sneezing (covering them by hands).