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How To Break A Fever

Veterinarian Reviewed on January 9, 2012 by Paulina Nelega, RH
Posted in Uncategorized

How to Break a Fever


A Fever is thought to be present when a person’s body temperature rises above the normal 37.0 degrees Celsius or 99 degrees Fahrenheit. A temperature reading using an oral alcohol thermometer is the most common gauge for a fever and at 38.0 degrees Celsius, a person is said to have a fever.

There are many causes of a fever but regardless of the reason, fever is most commonly the result of the body’s normal reaction to various organisms, chemicals and toxins. Knowing ways on how to break a fever is essential in reducing the discomforts accompanied by fever such as pain, redness, swelling and many other symptoms.

Causes of a Fever

Common causes of a fever are organisms which are called pyrogens (fever-inducing) which can be bacteria, viruses, fungi or toxins. These pyrogens stimulate the immune system sending signals to the hypothalamus to increase the body’s internal temperature as a response. When we have fever, we feel cold and we sometimes break into chills. These are just the normal bodily responses, constricting the blood vessels found in the surface of the skin to reduce water loss making our skin cold and clammy.

Symptoms of a Fever

A Fever is a body temperature that is above 38.00 degrees Celsius or 100 degrees Fahrenheit. It may or may not be accompanied by aches, pains, colds, coughs, chills, nausea, vomiting and a sore throat. A person who has a fever may feel weak and may have a loss of appetite as well.

How to Break a Fever

A low grade fever may not need any treatment at all to be reduced and may just go away on its own. However, a moderate to high grade fever, on the other hand, will need effective techniques to break. Here are the most common ways:

1. Cold compresses may be used to reduce fever. Apply cold compress directly over the forehead or the nape of the neck to be very effective in reducing fever. The hypothalamus is located at the base of the neck and placing cold compress on the site may significantly reduce fever.

2. Apply tepid water or do tepid sponge bath. For very high fever, tap water or tepid water may be used; just soak a small towel with water and apply on the large areas of exposed skin like the arms, legs and abdomen. Do tapping motion, never stroke the skin with the wet towel. Stroking increases heat through friction while gently tapping the towel will let water evaporate faster to cool the body effectively.

3. Never wrap a person with fever, dress him up in dry, soft and thin fabrics to allow heat to escape the body but never undress him. Do not wrap with blankets except when experiencing chills. Do not place a person with fever near a fan or an air conditioning unit to reduce body temperature; just allow heat to escape normally from the surface of the skin.

4. Increase his fluid intake with water, juice and fruits. Hydrating from the inside the body can totally reduce body temperature faster.

5. Give antipyretics or medication for fever as necessary or follow your doctor’s prescription. Acetaminophen, ibuprofen and aspirin are the most common medications for fever bough over the counter or prescribed by doctors.

Suggested Products

Feverfew Herb (Chrysanthemum parthenium or Tanacetum parthenium)


White Willow (Salix spp.)

Yin Chiao Gold

Echinacea & Goldenseal

Echinacea Root


Echinacea Root (Alcohol-Free)

Echinacea-Goldenseal (Alcohol-Free)

Read also: The Effects of Obesity on Health

Our Expert

Paulina Nelega, RH
Paulina Nelega, RH, has been in private practice as a Clinical Herbalist for over 15 years. She has developed and taught courses in herbal medicine, and her articles on health have appeared in numerous publications. She is very passionate about the healing power of nature. Ask Dr. Jan

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