In most cases, it is not a disease or an illness but an indication of an underlying viral infection. The fever is mainly caused due to the body’s response to the invading viral antigens.
Viral fever is an umbrella term for various viral infections. A normal human body temperature is 37.1°C (98.4° F). When the body temperature rises above normal, it is classified as fever.
Viral fever is common in infants, children and people. When there is a seasonal change or an outbreak, viral fever occurs, and in most cases, it resolves on its own. However, few infections can be low-grade fever, and a high-grade fever can occur in infections like Dengue.
Symptoms of viral fever
The symptoms of viral fever will depend on the type of infection and the virus. It also varies from one person to the other.
- Sore throat
- High-grade fever
- Runny nose
- Muscle pain
- Loss of appetite
- Facial swelling
- Rashes on the skin
- Burning of eyes or redness
These symptoms are common for bacterial infection. A viral infection attacks the immune system and weakens them. It can lead to secondary or opportunistic infections if left untreated.
If the fever shoots up to 103-105° F, immediate medical attention will be required to prevent any untoward effect on the body functions.
In most cases, viral fever symptoms subside when the virus nears its end cycle. However, you should consult your doctor if the symptoms do not subside.
Causes of viral fever
Viral fever occurs when the pyrogens in the body fight the viral antigens as a defensive mechanism. Some of the common causes include
- Close contact with a person affected with viral fever.
- When inhaling virus-containing droplets.
- Drinking water contaminated with the virus.
- Sharing food with an infected person.
- When coming in contact with the bodily fluids of an infected person during intercourse.
- Exchange of syringes during drug abuse.
Types of viral fever
The affected part can classify the types of viral fever.
- Respiratory viral fever
- Exanthematous viral fever
- Viral enteritis
Exanthematous viral fever causes skin rashes, other skin-related problems, and fever. Some of the common symptoms include skin eruption and rashes. Viral enteritis affects the digestive system and is also called as stomach flu.
How long does the viral fever last?
In most cases, a viral fever will last for about 3-4 days. The fever can also last up to one week.
If you are affected with Dengue, the fever can last up to a week. In some cases, it can last up to 10 days or more. However, the duration of the viral fever will depend on a person’s immunity and the fever type.
Complications of viral fever
Viral fever may not cause major complications. However, if left untreated, it can lead to dehydration, nervous system malfunction, organ failure, seizures and coma.
Home remedies and treatment for viral fever
There is no specific treatment for viral infection, and antibiotics do not work. The treatment will aim to alleviate the symptoms, and the doctor will recommend certain medications.
- Adequate hydration is important. Viral fever can drain your energy and lead to loss of electrolytes. So drink plenty of water.
- Do not skip medications that is prescribed by your doctor.
- Try to lower your temperature by applying a damp cloth on your forehead. Additionally, over-the-counter medication like paracetamol and ibuprofen can help reduce the temperature.
Viral fever is common and usually resolves on its own. The common symptoms of viral are high-grade fever, dehydration, loss of appetite and respiratory dysfunction. If the fever does not subside within 3-5 days, consult your doctor.
How long does it take to recover from a fever virus?
It takes up to a week to recover from a viral infection.
Which antibiotic is best for viral fever?
Antibiotics don’t work when you have a viral fever. The doctor will give you medication to reduce the fever.
Can we take a bath in viral fever?
Bathing helps reduce body aches and dilates peripheral vessels. It also reduces the temperature and avoids convolutions.
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