Regardless of the cause, these are the worst things to do when having a fever. Avoid them and seek medical attention if your temperature exceeds 39.3 C.
Regardless of the cause, these are best practices you should follow if you have a fever. And seek medical attention immediately if your body temperature exceeds 39.3 degrees Celsius.
10 Don’ts when you have a fever
1. Drink alcohol, soda
Alcohol, soda and caffeinated beverages should be avoided during a fever, according to Dr. Pauline J. Jose, from California (USA). They can cause dehydration when the body really needs to stay hydrated.
2. Keep your body too warm
Don’t wear too many clothes or in very hot places, says Dr. Dimitar Marinov, from Varna Medical University (Bulgaria). This can disrupt the body’s temperature regulation and make the fever worse.
3. Taking too much antipyretic drug
Acetaminophen is an effective antipyretic, but overdose can lead to serious liver damage and even death, Dr. Marinov said.
Adults should not exceed 1,000 mg of acetaminophen at a time, limited to 2,000 mg a day. For children, the dosage is lower. It is best to consult a doctor.
4. Stay hungry for too long
Dr. Marinov said, should not stop eating when fever is very dangerous. Fever speeds up metabolism and the body needs more calories from food. Hunger can cripple the immune system.
5. Forget to drink water
Dr. Ralph E. Holsworth, from Colorado (USA), said the fever will increase the respiratory rate, thereby causing dehydration and increased sweating to reduce body temperature. Moreover, the amount of drinking water often decreases during a fever, which will eventually aggravate dehydration.
Need to retain water, so make sure to drink plenty of water. According to WebMD (USA), men need to drink about 3 liters and more than 2 liters for women every day.
6. Give children aspirin
Dr. Leann Poston, from Invigor Medical Center, New York, said adults can take aspirin, but it’s possible that aspirin injections to children or adolescents when infected with the virus, can lead to Reye’s syndrome – can be fatal. This is a rare disorder that causes brain and liver damage, which usually occurs in children, though it can occur at any age.
Children should take common fever-reducing medicines, such as paracetamol (tylenol) and anti-inflammatory drugs such as ibuprofen. It is best to consult a physician.
7. Stay up at night
The immune system consumes a lot of energy to try to fight infections during the day. When you sleep, your body has time to recover that energy. Not sleeping can make the disease last longer.
Get 7 to 9 hours of sleep each night to make sure you get enough rest and the right time to heal.
8. Continue daily activities
The body needs a lot of energy to fight off infections, Dr. Poston said. Turning that energy into other activities can make it harder to fight infections.
Stay at home until the fever is gone for at least 24 hours. Make sure you get enough sleep and drink enough water.
9. Take a cold shower
Although cold water can reduce the temperature in a short time, it is very uncomfortable and can lead to chills. Shaky muscles can raise the body’s temperature again, Dr. Poston says.
Instead wipe with warm water. The body will start to cool as the water evaporates. Stop or use warmer water if you start to feel chills.
10. Abuse fever medication
Fever is a symptom, not a disease. That’s the body’s response to infection, Dr. Poston said. If you do not feel uncomfortable, it is best not to use fever-reducing medicines because doing so is against the attempt to slow down the multiplication of viruses or bacteria of the body.
Call medical authorities if in doubt
There are many causes of fever, both viruses and bacteria, Dr. Poston said. Call the nearest health department if you are worried about symptoms, whether or not it is related to COVID-19.