What Temperature is Considered a Fever?
A body temperature of 38°C (100.4°F) and above is considered a fever. While there many explanations as to why a person could be experiencing a high temperate, such as physical activity, menstrual cycle or just walking in the sun for too long. Its best for the individual to rest in a cool environment for 10-20 minutes before taking their temperature again if they feel fine and do not have any other symptoms.
Does a Fever Mean You Have COVID-19?
No, having a fever does not mean you have COVID-19, only a medical test or approved test kits can determine this. However. according to the World Health Organization statistics:
- 1% of cases reported fatigue.
- 7% of cases that reported dry cough
- 9% of 55,924 laboratory-confirmed cases reported a fever.
Are There Different Temperatures To Indicate Fever For Child and Adult
- Children: 38°C (100.4°F) and above
- Adults: 38°C (100.4°F) and above
- Older adults: 37.8°C (100°F) and above
- Or 1.1°C above the person's usual value.
It is also important to note that body temperature taken from different parts of the body can vary slightly, typically places to take temperature using a non contact thermometer would be the head, typical places to take temperature using contact thermometer include; mouth, armpits, rectum.
What is a Normal Human Body Temperature?
The widely accepted normal body temperature ranges from 36.5°C (97.7°F) to 37.5°C (99.5°F).
Human Body Temperature Chart
|Fever Temperature Chart|
|Normal||36.5 - 37.5°C||97.7 - 99.5°F|
|Fever / Hyperthermia||>37.5 or 38.3°C||99.5 or 100.9°F|
|Hyperpyrexia||>40.0 or 41.5°C||104.0 or 106.7°F|
A New Average Body Temperature?
There are some news online regarding a new average body temperature and that it should be lower than the widely regarded average of 98.6˚ F (37˚ C). This is because we first established this average in the 1800s where a German physician, Carl Wunderlich, measured the temperatures of around 25,000 people, via their armpit. He found that 98.6˚ F (37˚ C) was the average temperature and we have been using this data since.
The problem with this measurement is several fold;
- Only the armpits were used to measure when several other points could have been considered too.
- It wasn't noted what time of the day the temperatures were taken and we know that body temperature changes throughout the day.
- Temperatures also vary between genders and ages where women and younger people have higher readings compared to men and older people.
- More recent studies showed that the average temperature is lower at around 97.5˚ F (36.39˚ C).
Why is the Temperature getting Lower?
There are a few possibilities:
- The initial temperature sampling didn't take into considerations of different measuring locations, age, gender and time variations.
- Lower metabolic rate; this greatly determines your body's temperature and with modern day treatments and lifestyle, this could have dropped since 1800s.
- Lower rate of infection and inflammation; in 1800s there were many diseases and inflammatory conditions which could have increased body temperatures.
Despite more recent studies showing a lower average body temperature, this is not a concern and medical experts will continue to use the average as a reference point.
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