Fever, also known as high fever or high temperature, is an increase in body temperature that is mostly due to illness. It is a fairly common condition that is usually accompanied by chills, shivering, headache and sometimes, delirium. When you have fever your body is telling you that something is not right.
Fevers help the body fight infections, but they can occasionally get so high that they are dangerous.
Fever can normally be controlled or treated using over-the-counter medications such as acetaminophen and ibuprofen, rest and fluids. However, there are times when your body may be signaling that something more serious is happening and you need to visit a nearby emergency room.
Causes of Fever
Your body temperature fluctuates naturally during the day and it may get higher when you exercise or during your menstrual cycle. Your body temperature may also rise if your body thinks that it needs to fight an illness. A slight fever may occur due to:
- Heat exhaustion
- Bacterial infection
- Severe Sunburn
- Medications, including antibiotics and drugs used to regulate blood pressure
Fevers may also occur when a person has no other illness or health concerns. In this case, your doctor may need to perform tests to determine the cause of the fever.
Symptoms of Fever
- Chills and Shivering
- Muscle Ache
- Loss of Appetite
If you or a loved one is experiencing a high fever, visit the closest SignatureCare Emergency Center. We are open 24/7 to treat your medical emergencies. Our board-certified ER doctors are ready to treat your fever and any of its side-effects. Our doctors are also qualified in pediatric emergency care.
Fever in Children and Infants
Fevers in children and infants can be more serious, especially if there are no other symptoms.
Newborns may actually have a low temperature when they are ill because they cannot regulate their body temperature and your newborn should see a doctor immediately if their temperature is 97 F or lower.
If your child is three months old or younger, you should see a doctor if their fever is 100.4 F or higher. If your child is between the ages of three and six months, you should take them to a doctor if they have a fever and are irritable or if the fever is over 102 F.
For children who are six to 24 months old, you should schedule an appointment or take them to the nearest emergency room if they have a fever of 102 F for more than 24 hours. For the most accurate reading, you should use a rectal thermometer to determine the severity of your child’s fever.
Febrile seizures may occur in children between the ages of six months and five years old. These seizures are caused by fever and cause children to lose consciousness.
If your child has a febrile seizure, lay them on the ground on their side or stomach. Make sure the area is clear of any sharp objects and hold your child to prevent injury. Once the seizure is over, you should immediately take them to a nearby emergency room to determine why they have a fever.
Visit the closest SignatureCare Emergency Center immediately if you have any of the following symptoms.
- Stiff neck
- Irritability or listlessness
- Sensitivity to light
- Severe headache
- Abdominal pain
- Trouble breathing
- Swelling of the throat
- Chest pain
- Skin rash that develops or worsens quickly
If you have a fever emergency, please visit us immediately at one of our emergency room locations. We are open 24/7 to help alleviate your symptoms and treat your fever. Schedule an emergency room appointment today.
When to Seek Emergency Room Treatment for Fever
In many instances, fever will naturally go away on its own as your body begins to heal. However, you should seek emergency medical treatment if you have a fever of over 101 F for more than three days or if your temperature goes over 103 F.
If your child has a fever and is listless or severely uncomfortable, call a pediatric emergency center or take the child to the closest emergency room immediately.