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Concerned About a Fever? A Guide to Fever Temperature, Symptoms, and Home Remedies

Here is some important information to help you better understand what is considered a fever, related symptoms, warning signs, and how to take action. Please talk to your doctor if you have any additional question or concerns because the information included here is not a substitute for medical consultation.

What Is Considered a Fever?

Normal body temperature is approximately 98.6°F, but can vary during the day based on metabolic changes, sleep and waking cycles, hormones, and activity levels. When your body temperature reaches 99.1°F or higher, you are experiencing a fever.1

  • A fever is an increase in your body’s core temperature above a set number that is controlled by an area of your brain that acts as your own personal thermostat.1,2

  • Having a fever is usually a sign that your immune system has been activated to fight an infection or illness but it can also be a side effect of certain medications and vaccinations3

What Are Some Fever Symptoms?

When having a fever, you might experience some of these symptoms3:

  • Body aches

  • Chills (feeling cold, shivering and shaking)

  • Faster heartbeat

  • Fatigue (feeling tired)

  • Flushed complexion or hot skin

  • Headaches

  • Sweating

Taking care of yourself is important when having a fever, but make sure you contact a medical professional if you are concerned about your overall health.

Read on to learn more about the temperature ranges for fevers.

What Temperature Is Considered a Fever?

Fever definitions can vary, but the table below highlights general temperature ranges for low, moderate, and high fevers—and when it is important to consider medical assistance.

Low temperature thermometer icon

Low-Grade Fever

99.1°F to 100.4°F1

If your temperature is in the low-grade range, this can be a sign that your immune system is mildly activated.3

High temperature thermometer icon

Moderate-Grade Fever

100.6°F to 102.2°F1

If you have underlying lung or heart conditions, moderate fevers can be problematic because they increase breathing and heart rate.3

High temperature thermometer icon

High-Grade Fever

102.4°F to 105.8°F or greater1

If your temperature reaches or goes above 104°F this is considered a medical emergency and you should seek immediate medical attention.3

You should also contact a medical professional if your fever lasts more than 24 to 48 hours and you have any of these warning signs4:

  • Confusion

  • Headache, stiff neck or both

  • Flat, small, purplish red spots on the skin (sign of bleeding)

  • Low blood pressure

  • Rapid heartbeat or breathing

  • Shortness of breath

See what actions you can take to help break a fever below.

Tips to Consider to Break a Fever

Here are 4 areas of action you can focus on that may help reduce fever temperature and make yourself feel more comfortable.

1. More Fluids

Fluid drops icon

Stay hydrated by drinking plenty of fluids (water, juice, or broth)5

  • Avoid sugary drinks and caffeinated beverages.6

2. Eat Less

Spoon, plate and fork icon

Eat light foods that are easy to digest5

  • Crackers and soup are a good choice

  • Avoid dairy products like milk and cheese

3. Rest Up

Half moon icon

Get plenty or rest and sleep5

  • Reduce activity and remaining in a cooler environment can also help7

4. Stay Cool

Thermometer and snowflake icon

Use damp cloths on your forehead and neck5,6

  • You can also use an ice pack to help relieve fever symptoms and bring down your body temperature6

Take lukewarm baths or showers5,6

Dress in loose fitting clothing7

Taking a medicine that contains ibuprofen such as MOTRIN® IB can also temporarily relieve a fever.


  1. Balli S, Shumway KR, Sharan S. Physiology, Fever. [Updated 2022 Sep 11]. In: StatPearls [Internet]. Treasure Island (FL): StatPearls Publishing; 2023 Jan-. Available from:
  2. Morrison SF, Nakamura K. Central neural pathways for thermoregulation. Front Biosci. 2011;16:74–104.

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