First Aid For Fevers: When Should You Go To Urgent Care For A Fever?

FeverA fever is caused by an increase in your core body temperature. The average body temperature is around 98.6 degrees F. Temperatures that read above or below 98.6 degrees can be a red flag, often pointing towards infection or disease. A thermometer makes it very easy to tell if you have a fever, but without the expertise of a doctor the cause of your fever can be tricky to identify. A few of the most usual causes of fever include the flu and the common cold, but sometimes a more serious underlying health problem causes a fever. Read on to learn more about the causes of fevers and when to visit Urgent Care for a fever.

What Causes A Fever? 

Fever, also known as pyrexia or febrile response, is not a medical condition in itself, but instead it is a sign of a separate medical condition going on in the body. Fevers can make you feel hot, but they can also make you feel really cold and cause you to have “the chills.”

It’s easy to hate on your fever, but studies find that fevers might be a useful tool the body uses to help fight off illness and disease. The body always knows of an illness before you do, your body causes the symptoms that alert you something is wrong as it reacts to fight off intruders. Besides fever another example is throwing up, which isn’t any fun either, but is your body’s way of removing potential toxins that have entered your body. This is why it is often recommended you let mild fevers run their course, but not all fevers can be taken so lightly.

What Is The Average Temperature Range Of A Healthy Person?

The moment your temperature reads slightly different than 98.6 doesn’t mean you have a fever, or any serious health problems. The average temperature of a healthy individual can range between 97.7 F and 99.5 F degrees.

What Is The Cause Of Your Fever?

Fevers are most often triggered by colds, gastroenteritis, or other common infections. A fever can also be a sign of a more serious condition including:

  • Drug side effects
  • Cancer
  • Certain vaccines
  • Ear, lung, bladder, kidney, throat, or skin infection
  • Inflammation issues such as inflammatory bowel disease
  • Autoimmune disease
  • Hormone disruption
  • Blood clots

When Is A Fever Considered Serious?

For fevers that are abnormally high, consistent, or come with other side effects you need to seek urgent medical attention. Those at the highest risk for dangerous fevers include newborns, young children, the elderly, and anyone with a compromised immune system.

Adults are not typically in any real danger unless their temperature reads over 102 degrees F. You should always consult with your doctor first before using medications to treat a fever that is less than 102 degrees. For fevers that are over 102 degrees, medication may be recommended.

Infants that have a rectal temperature reading of 100.4 F or higher should be taken to the emergency room immediately, as this is a sign of a potentially life threatening complication.

Important questions to address: have you traveled to a foreign destination recently? Are you at risk for an infection such as malaria or rocky spotted fever? Your recent exposures can change the possible severity of your fever.

When Should You Visit Urgent Care For Fevers?

You should visit your local Urgent Care if you or your child experiences a fever along with any of the following symptoms:

  • Fussy, very uncomfortable
  • Diarrhea, vomiting, or nausea
  • Earache
  • Cough
  • Sore throat

Other reasons to visit Urgent Care for a fever:

  • A persistent fever that does not break on its own, or continues to worsen.
  • If a child younger than two has a fever for over 24 hours.
  • Children two and older have a fever lasting 3+ days.

When Should You Go To The Emergency Room For A Fever?

The Emergency Room is not as affordable as your local Urgent Care, but for serious fevers with the potential to be life threatening, you should go to the ER.

You should visit the Emergency Room if your fever is accompanied by any of the following symptoms:

  • Unfamiliar skin rash
  • Extreme sensitivity to light
  • Stiffness in neck
  • Confused mental state
  • Consistent vomiting
  • Chest pains or troubles breathing

Urgent Care For Fever Relief

Since your fever might actually help fight off the infection in your body, instead of trying to reduce your fever you want to find the cause of it and work to solve that problem.

Fevers are uncomfortable, they can make you feel hot and clammy, and they usually come with other unpleasant side effects too. Since you can never be sure on your own what is causing your fever, it’s always best to play it safe and visit a doctor whenever you are in doubt.

If a persistent fever won’t leave you alone, visit Urgent Medical Center today for fast answers and relief.


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