How to Check Fever Without Thermometer (with Images)

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How to Check Fever Without Thermometer (with Images)
How to Check Fever Without Thermometer (with Images)
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Having a fever means having a body temperature above the normal average of 37°C. Fevers can accompany many types of illnesses and, depending on the cause, they can indicate that something benign or serious is taking place. The most accurate way to check it is with the use of a thermometer – however, in the absence of one, there are some ways to interpret the symptoms to indicate if it is necessary to seek medical help.

Steps

Part 1 of 3: Checking the Symptoms of a Fever

Check a Fever Without a Thermometer Step 1

Step 1. Feel the person's forehead or neck

This is the most common way to check fever without a thermometer to find out if the person is warmer than normal.

  • Use the back of your hands or your lips, as the skin on your palm is not as sensitive as the areas indicated.
  • Do not try to measure body temperature on the person's hands or feet, as these places can be cold even when the subject has a fever.
  • That's the first step in figuring out if something's wrong, but it can't pinpoint if someone has a dangerously high fever. Sometimes a person's skin can feel cold and clammy when they have a high body temperature. At other times, the skin may feel very hot, even though the person is not having a fever.
  • Check your skin temperature in an environment that is not too hot or cold. Also, do not check right after the person has exercised, as sweating causes temporary changes in body temperature.
Check a Fever Without a Thermometer Step 2

Step 2. Check the person's skin for redness

Fever usually causes a flush of the skin on the face. However, this can be more difficult to notice if the person has darker skin.

Check a Fever Without a Thermometer Step 3

Step 3. Check if the person appears lethargic

A fever is usually accompanied by lethargy or extreme fatigue, such as moving or talking slowly and not wanting to get out of bed.

Children with a fever may complain of feeling weak or tired, refuse to go out and play, or have a loss of appetite

Check a Fever Without a Thermometer Step 4

Step 4. Ask if the person is in pain

Bodily pain in muscles and joints usually occurs simultaneously with fever.

Headaches are also commonly experienced by people with a fever

Check a Fever Without a Thermometer Step 5

Step 5. Find out if the person is dehydrated

This usually occurs when you have a fever. Ask if the person is very thirsty or has a dry mouth.

If the person's urine has a bright yellow color, it may indicate dehydration and fever. Very dark urine is also a symptom of severe dehydration

Check a Fever Without a Thermometer Step 6

Step 6. See if the person feels nauseous

Nausea and loss of appetite are symptoms of fever and other ailments such as the flu. Pay close attention if the person feels sick or is vomiting and cannot keep food in their system.

Check a Fever Without a Thermometer Step 7

Step 7. Check if the person is shaking and sweating

As a person's body temperature rises and falls, it is common for them to shiver and feel cold, even when the ambient temperature is mild.

Due to this variation in body temperature, the person may also alternate between feeling hot and cold as a result of a fever

Check a Fever Without a Thermometer Step 8

Step 8. Treat febrile seizures that last less than three minutes

A febrile seizure is a kind of agitation that happens just before or while a child has an elevated body temperature. A fever greater than 39 degrees can also cause hallucinations. About one in 20 children under the age of five will have such an episode at some point. While it can be disturbing to see your child go through this experience, it will not cause permanent harm to the child. To treat a febrile seizure:

  • Lay the child on his side in a clear space or area on the floor.
  • Do not try to hold your child during a seizure or put anything in his or her mouth; he won't swallow his tongue.
  • Stay with your child; this episode should last from one to two minutes.
  • Place the child on his side while he recovers.

Part 2 of 3: Determining if the fever is severe

Check a Fever Without a Thermometer Step 9

Step 1. Get immediate medical attention if your child's febrile seizures last longer than three minutes

This could be a sign of a more serious illness. Call an ambulance and stay with your child, keeping him or her in recovery position. You should also seek immediate medical care if febrile seizures are accompanied by:

  • Vomiting.
  • Stiffness in the neck.
  • Breathing difficulty.
  • Extreme fatigue.
Check a Fever Without a Thermometer Step 10

Step 2. Call your doctor if symptoms persist or worsen

If the child is between 6 and 24 months and his fever is above 38. 8 degrees, see a doctor. For children 3 months or younger, you should see a doctor whenever they have a fever greater than 38 degrees.

Check a Fever Without a Thermometer Step 11

Step 3. Seek medical attention if the person experiences severe abdominal pain, chest pain, difficulty in swallowing, and neck stiffness

These can be symptoms of meningitis, a life threatening and highly contagious disease.

Check a Fever Without a Thermometer Step 12

Step 4. See a doctor if the person is agitated, confused or hallucinating

These can be indicative of a virus or a bacterial infection such as hypothermia.

Check a Fever Without a Thermometer Step 13

Step 5. Seek help from a doctor if there is blood in your stool, urine, or mucus

These are also signs of a more serious infection.

Check a Fever Without a Thermometer Step 14

Step 6. Get medical attention if the person's immune system is already weakened by another illness, such as cancer or AIDS

A fever can be a sign that your immune system is under attack or experiencing other complications or conditions.

Check a Fever Without a Thermometer Step 15

Step 7. Know the common illnesses associated with fever

Fevers are caused by different types of ailments. Ask your doctor if elevated body temperature could be indicating one of the following conditions:

  • A virus.
  • A bacterial infection.
  • Heat exhaustion or burns.
  • Arthritis.
  • A malignant tumor.
  • Certain antibiotics and medications to control blood pressure.
  • Immunizations such as vaccines against diphtheria, tetanus and whooping cough.

Part 3 of 3: Treating Fever at Home

Check a Fever Without a Thermometer Step 16

Step 1. Treat fever at home if it is below 39 degrees and you are over 18 years old

A fever is your body's way of trying to heal or recover, and most fevers will go away on their own after a few days.

  • A fever can be cured with the right treatment.
  • Drink plenty of fluids and rest. Medication is not necessary, but it can increase your comfort level. Use a fever-reducing medicine such as aspirin or ibuprofen.
  • Seek medical attention if symptoms last longer than three days and/or develop more severe symptoms.
Check a Fever Without a Thermometer Step 17

Step 2. Treat fever with rest and fluids if the child does not have severe symptoms

Children and teenagers should not take aspirin as it is related to a condition called Reye's syndrome.

  • If your child has a temperature below 39°C, the condition can be treated at home.
  • Seek medical attention if symptoms last longer than three days and/or develop more severe symptoms.

Tips

  • The most accurate way to check fever at home is to take the temperature with a thermometer. The best places to take a temperature are the rectum and lower part of the tongue, or with a tympanic thermometer (in the ear). Armpit temperatures are less accurate.
  • If the child is less than three months old, with a fever above 38°C, see a doctor.

Notices

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