why do we get chills when sick
We've all been there: burning up with fever, yet shivering with chills. It turns out that what feels like a bizarre internal thermostat malfunction is actually the body's way of fighting infection. Viruses and bacteria multiply less well above 98. 6 degrees Fahrenheit (F). "Part of our immune system's response against infection includes raising the body's temperature to diminish the ability of microbes to reproduce," says, senior associate at the Johns Hopkins Center for Health Security in Baltimore. A fever, or rise in body temperature, of even just a degree or two can stop a virus's ability to grow. When the brain increases the body's temperature set point, the body strives to meet that higher temperature. You feel cold because technically you are colder than your body's new set point. In turn, the body works to generate heat to warm itself by contracting and relaxing muscles в hence the shivering, or chills. The length of a fever can vary significantly depending on its cause. Possible sources abound, from
to,В , and. Other reasons for fever include autoimmune disorders, like and, as well asВ , and even certain drugs. In children, fever can flare after immunizations. "In some cases with a mild viral illness, a fever can last for a day, or it can last for weeks to months with systemic infections," says Dr.
Adalja. The first thing to do is play detective to determine the cause of your fever based on the signs and symptoms of your illness, he says. When Is Treatment Needed? The right treatment for body chills with fever depends on the cause, and that's where your doctor might need to step in. Call your doctor in any of the following cases: The fever is accompanied by serious symptoms, like shortness of breath, neck stiffness, headache, rash, swelling of a joint, abdominal pain, or extreme fatigue. The fever is high, or lasts longer than two or three days. You have any serious medical issues and develop a fever. For infants (under 1 year old), call the pediatrician if their temperature is higher than 101 degrees F. Call 911 if anything unusual or alarming accompanies the fever and chills, such as when someone with a fever experiences any of these symptoms: Barring any of the above situations, getting through chills and fever calls for sensible care. Rest and drink plenty of fluids to prevent dehydration. A lukewarm (not cold) bath might help, as can taking or в don't give. A little TLC can't hurt, either. The term БchillsБ refers to a feeling of being cold without an apparent cause. You get this feeling when your muscles repeatedly expand and contract and the vessels in your skin constrict. Chills can occur with a fever and cause shivering or.
What are chills? The term БchillsБ refers to a feeling of being cold without an apparent cause. You get this feeling when your muscles repeatedly expand and contract and the vessels in your skin constrict. Chills can occur with a fever and cause shivering or shaking. Your body chills can be constant. Each episode can last for as long as an hour. Your chills can also occur periodically and last for several minutes. Some chills occur after exposure to a cold environment. They can also occur as a response to a bacterial or viral infection that causes a. Chills are commonly associated with the following conditions: or If you or your child has a fever with chills, there are some things you can do at home for comfort and relief. Keep reading to learn how to treat a fever with chills and when you should call a doctor. Treatment is usually based on whether your chills are accompanied by a fever and the severity of the fever. If your fever is and you have no other serious symptoms, you donБt have to see a doctor. Get plenty of rest and drink plenty of liquids. A mild fever is 101. 4бF (38. 6бC) or less. Cover yourself with a light sheet and avoid heavy blankets or clothing, which can raise your body temperature. Sponging your body with lukewarm water or taking a cool shower may help reduce a fever.
Cold water, however, may trigger an episode of chills. Over-the-counter (OTC) medications can lower a fever and fight chills, such as: As with any medication, carefully follow the instructions and take them as directed. Aspirin and ibuprofen will lower your fever and reduce inflammation. Acetaminophen will bring down a fever, but it wonБt reduce inflammation. Acetaminophen can be toxic to your liver if it isnБt taken as directed and long-term use of ibuprofen can cause kidney and stomach damage. severe or Treating a child with chills and fever depends on the childБs age, temperature, and any accompanying symptoms. In general, if your childБs fever is between 100бF (37. 8бC) and 102бF (38. 9бC) and theyБre uncomfortable, you can give them acetaminophen in tablet or. ItБs important to follow the dosing instructions on the package. Never bundle feverish children in heavy blankets or layers of clothing. Dress them in lightweight clothing and give them water or other liquids to keep them hydrated. Never give aspirin to children under the age of 18 because of the risk of. ReyeБs syndrome is a rare but serious disorder that can develop in children who are given aspirin while fighting a viral infection. According to the, you should call a doctor in the case of any of the following: a fever in a, and the child is lethargic or irritable Your doctor will ask questions about your chills and fever, including: Do the chills make you shake, or do you only feel cold?
What was your highest body temperature that was accompanied by chills? Have you had chills just once or have you had repeated episodes of chills? How long did each episode of chills last? Did the chills begin after exposure to an, or did they begin suddenly? Do you have any other symptoms? Your doctor will perform a and possibly run diagnostic tests to see if a bacterial or viral infection is causing your fever. Diagnostic tests may include a: blood test, including a of secretions from the and to detect, or other infections Your doctor may prescribe an antibiotic if youБre diagnosed with a bacterial infection, such as or pneumonia. WhatБs the outlook for chills? Chills and fever are signs that something is wrong. If chills and fever persist after treatment, see your doctor to determine the underlying cause. If a fever goes untreated, you may experience severe and. Children ages 6 months to 5 years may also have fever-induced seizures, which are known as. These seizures donБt typically cause long-term health problems. Healthline and our partners may receive a portion of revenues if you make a purchase using a link above.
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