Fever is not a disease. Fever occurs when the body’s internal “thermostat” raises the body temperature above its normal level. Normal body temperature varies by person, age, activity, and time of day. The average normal body temperature is 98.6°F (37°C). Fever serves as one of the body’s natural defenses against bacteria and viruses which cannot live at a higher temperature. Raising the temperature a few degrees can give the body the winning edge. In addition, a fever activates the body’s immune system, accelerating the production of white blood cells, antibodies, and many other infection-fighting agents. A slight fever can make it harder for them to survive. Fever also activates your body’s immune system. Once the higher temperature is achieved, the shivering and chills stop. When the infection has been overcome or drugs such as aspirin or acetaminophen (Tylenol) have been taken, the thermostat resets to normal and the body’s cooling mechanisms switch on: the blood moves to the surface and sweating occurs.
There are many variations in normal body temperature, and this needs to be considered when measuring fever. Most people’s body temperatures even change a little bit during the course of the day. Fevers are primarily caused by viral or bacterial infections, such as pneumonia or influenza. Fever has several potential causes. First is infection-Most fevers are caused by infection or other illness. Fever helps the body fight infections by stimulating natural defense mechanisms. Second is Overdressing-Infants, especially newborns, may get fevers if they’re overbundled or in a hot environment because they can’t regulate their body temperature.Third is Immunizations-Babies and children sometimes get a low-grade fever after getting vaccinated. When an infection occurs, fever-inducing agents called pyrogens are released, either by the body’s immune system or by the invading cells themselves, that trigger the resetting of the thermostat. In other circumstances, the immune system may overreact (allergic reactions) or become damaged (autoimmune diseases), causing the uncontrolled release of pyrogens
Fever is not the only sign of a serious illness. There are different symptoms of a fever. The symptoms of a fever depends on what is causing it. Sometimes a fever can cause a chill. A chill occurs because when the brain raises the body’s “thermostat,” the body responds by shivering to raise the temperature. Fevers may be useful to some extent since they allow the body to reach high temperatures. This causes an unbearable environment for some pathogens. White blood cells also rapidly proliferate due to the suitable environment and can also help fight off the harmful pathogens and microbes that invaded the body. Children develop higher temperatures with activities like playing, but this is not fever because their set-point is normal. Elderly patients may have a decreased ability to generate body heat during a fever, so even a low-grade fever can have serious underlying causes in geriatrics.
Fever is an important signal that there’s something wrong in the body. Treatment of fever should be based primarily on lowering the setpoint, but facilitating heat loss may also contribute. Acetaminophen (Tylenol) or ibuprofen (Motrin or Advil). If you child has an infection, using a fever reducer will not help your child to get better any faster. Drugs to lower fever (antipyretics) can be given if a patient (particularly a child) is uncomfortable. These include aspirin, acetaminophen (Tylenol), and ibuprofin (Advil). Aspirin, however, should not be given to a child or adolescent with a fever since this drug has been linked to an increased risk of Reye’s syndrome. Bathing a patient in cool water can also help alleviate a high fever. Wet cloth or pads are also used for treatment, and applied to the forehead. Heat loss may be an effect of (possibly a combination of) heat conduction, convection, radiation or evaporation (sweating, perspiration). There are several things you to help bring the temperature down and make the person more comfortable. Keep the room at a comfortable temperature, but make sure that fresh air is circulating. Make sure they drink plenty of water to prevent dehydration. Give ice cubes to suck.