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The family doctor advises: what to do if you have a fever

Fever is an increase in body temperature above normal, usually due to illness. Normal body temperature is around 37°C (+- one degree, depending on individual body differences). There may also be slight fluctuations during the day and night. Contrary to popular belief, the level of fever is not necessarily related to the severity of the disease – for example, life-threatening meningitis may only cause a slight increase in temperature.

It causes fever

A fever caused by a viral or bacterial infection is caused by chemicals produced by the immune system. Most cases of mild fever go away on their own within a few days. A mild fever (up to 39°C) can actually help the immune system fight off the infection. In children between six months and six years of age, a fever can cause seizures. A fever of 42.4°C or higher, especially in the elderly, can permanently damage the brain.

To receive a quick and quality consultation with a family doctor, contact the specialists of Sokrato clinica and register for the first consultation by phone (8-640) 45761 or click here to learn more about our services.

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Symptoms of fever

Symptoms of a fever may include:

Feeling bad

Feeling hot and sweaty

Trembling Teeth grinding

Red face

Infection is the most common cause of fever

The cause of fever is usually some kind of infection.

May cause fever

  1. Viruses – such as colds or upper respiratory infections.

  2. Bacteria – such as tonsillitis, pneumonia or urinary tract infections.

  3. Some chronic conditions, such as rheumatoid arthritis and ulcerative colitis, can cause fever that lasts longer than two weeks.

  4. Some tropical diseases, such as malaria, which can cause recurring fevers or typhoid fever. Heatstroke, one of the symptoms of which is fever (without sweating).

  5. Medicines – some people can be sensitive to the ingredients of medicines and fever is a side effect of certain medicines. Malignant tumors.

Tips for managing a fever

  1. Take paracetamol or ibuprofen in appropriate doses to lower your body temperature.

  2. Drink plenty of fluids, especially water.

  3. Avoid alcohol, tea and coffee as these drinks can cause mild dehydration.

  4. Wipe exposed body skin with lukewarm water. To enhance the cooling effect of evaporation, you can try standing in front of a fan.

  5. Avoid taking cold baths or showers. The skin reacts to the cold by constricting the blood vessels that trap body heat.

  6. Cold can also cause shivering, which can lead to more heat. Make sure you can make time for quality rest, including making the bed.

When is it necessary to consult a family doctor with a fever?

You should always consult your family doctor in the following cases:

Three days after the onset of fever, you still have a fever despite home treatment. Your temperature is above 40°C.

You involuntarily shake and get chills, or your teeth grind.

You are hot but not sweating. You seem to be getting worse over time.

You experience unusual symptoms such as hallucinations, vomiting, stiff neck, skin rash, fast heart rate, chills or muscle spasms.

You feel confused and sleepy.

You have a severe headache that does not respond to pain relievers.

You recently traveled abroad.

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When should you seek emergency medical help immediately?

You should see your GP straight away if you or someone else has any of the following symptoms:

Fever with headache and neck pain.

A rash that does not fade when the skin is pressed (hemorrhages).

This may indicate a life-threatening illness. Sokrato clinica family doctors are fully prepared to provide the maximum necessary assistance and time to their patients.

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Diagnostic methods

Since fever is a symptom and not a disease, the underlying cause must be determined before specific treatment can be initiated.

Some additional tests may be necessary if the cause of the fever is not clear after the doctor takes the medical history and performs the necessary tests. These tests may include:

Blood test.

Urinalysis and culture.

Examination and culture of a throat swab or mucus sample.

Stool examination and culture. X-ray procedure.

Treatment options

Treatment depends on the cause – for example, chronic tonsillitis may require surgery to remove the tonsils (tonsillectomy). Fevers caused by viral diseases cannot be treated with antibiotics, as these drugs have no effect on viruses. For a mild bacterial infection, it is usually best to let the immune system deal with the problem rather than using antibiotics.

What to remember

A fever is an increase in body temperature, usually caused by an infection. Fevers caused by viral diseases cannot be treated with antibiotics, as these drugs have no effect on viruses. A high fever (about 41.5°C or more) is very dangerous and can cause convulsions.

To receive a quick and quality consultation with a family doctor, contact the specialists of Sokrato clinica and register for the first consultation by phone (8-640) 45761 or click here to learn more about our services.Piktograma „Patvirtinta bendruomenės“

 
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