How to Measure a Fever With No Thermometer Amid Coronavirus

Since the start of the spread of the COVID-19 coronavirus, one thing’s been clear: fever is one of the key symptoms of coronavirus. The CDC says that fever, a cough and shortness of breath are the three main symptoms, although cases have ranged from having no symptoms or “mild symptoms to severe illness and death.”

People are now becoming hyper-aware of those symptoms so that they can know if they should be getting tested or self-isolating at home until they’ve recovered. The issue with the fever as a symptom, however, is that many people don’t have thermometers in their homes, and they should definitely not be heading to the local pharmacy to pick one up if they are feeling feverish.

There are a few ways you can determine if you might be running a fever, even if you don’t have a thermometer. Having a specific temperature is just one of the indications that you have a fever. Other signs of a fever are chills, sweats, flushed skin and body aches.

The chairman of the Santa Monica Family Physicians medical group, David Cutler, MD, told Insider that “Feeling like you have fever is a pretty accurate way of knowing. If you feel hot or chilled, there’s a pretty good chance you have a fever.”

If you’re in isolation with someone else, you can always try the forehead test as well, which isn’t as precise as a thermometer but can still give an indication of a fever. Simply get your partner to touch their own forehead with the back of their hand, as a reference point, and then touch yours with the back of their hand. It won’t work to touch your own forehead since your whole body may feel hot if you have a fever.

According to the Harvard Medical School, a fever is when an adult’s body temperature reaches 100.4 °F (38 °C) or higher. The average body temperature of an adult without a fever is 98.6 °F (37 °C). With that being said, the normal body temperature of each person can vary, based on many different factors.

Every person can have different body temperatures, and it can also change during the day based on when someone’s eaten or exercised. The Harvard Medical School adds that “body temperature is often higher in the afternoon than it is when you wake up in the morning.”

The CDC has also defined having a fever as an adult reaching the measured temperature of at least 100.4 °F (38 °C). They do also say that “fever may be considered to be present if a person has not had a temperature measurement but feels warm to the touch, or gives a history of feeling feverish.”

Recent research indicates that the average human body temperature has declined since the Industrial Revolution, and it’s actually more like 97.9 °F (36.6 °C).

Post time: Apr-07-2020
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