Whether you’re handling a sudden tide of chills and also aches and pains, or you simply feel *a little* hotter 보다 usual, the desire to understand if you have actually a heat ASAP is understandable. ~ all, a fever has tendency to serve as one indicator that your human body is illegal something turn off (like a virus or a bacterial infection). And, the course, we’re currently in a cold and flu season that’s also happening during a global pandemic. You shouldn’t panic if you feeling feverish, yet it"s *a lot*.

You are watching: Why can't you take your own temperature with your hand

If friend don’t have a thermometer laying around, or the just one you can find was hidden deep in some bathroom drawer and also you’re not certain just just how long it’s remained in there, is there any legit (or at the very least somewhat legit) way to gauge whether her temperature is above normal without a thermometer?

Read ~ above to learn what to perform if you’re emotion feverish, no issue your thermometer situation, with understanding from immunology specialists.

First thing’s first: carry out you *need* a thermometer to tell if you have a fever?

The only method to know for sure the you have actually a fever is by acquisition your temperature through a thermometer, confirms David Erstein, MD, one allergist and immunologist based in new York. Medical professionals usually don’t consider you to have an ~actual~ clinically diagnosable fever unless it’s 100.4 levels Fahrenheit or above.

Also, questioning for a girlfriend here: deserve to you have actually a fever without a temperature? This is actually a super usual question (you—er, her friend—are not alone!), yet experts agree that the prize is no. “You cannot have a heat without having actually a temperature,” claims Jehan Riar, MD, a board-certified primary treatment physician v Mercy an individual Physicians. “Your human body temperature being higher than regular is what a fever is.” Most people are in the general variety of 98.6 because that a typical temperature, yet everyone is contempt different, Dr. Riar says.

Unfortunately, your chances of that s right guessing even if it is or not you have actually a heat without a thermometer room fair at best, she says. Instance in point: Patients who self-reported feeling feverish at a rural teaching hospital in India had a 58 percent opportunity of *actually* having actually a fever, follow to a research in Tropical Medicine and International Health.




If you’ve managed to dig up one old thermometer, digital and also old-school glass thermometers alike have to do the trick (as long as they’re no damaged or out of juice), claims Robert Eitches, MD, an allergist-immunologist and also fellow of the American board of Allergy, Asthma, and also Immunology. However if there’s any kind of indication that your old-school thermometer is cracked or broken, plunder it up in a Ziploc bag and throw it away. Mercury (a silvery white fluid still present in some family thermometers) can leak out, and it’s toxic.

Of course, before you popular music a thermometer under your tongue, you’ll want to clean it. Here"s just how to clean a thermometer properly:

Lather up part soap and water in her hands, scrub down the part of the thermometer you placed in your mouth for 20 seconds, and also rinse that off. If you have rubbing alcohol on hand, wipe under the thermometer applicator through a cotton round soaked v rubbing alcohol to sanitize it.Rinse it turn off again to remove the alcohol, advises Dr. Erstein.

If you don’t have any type of rubbing alcohol in ~ home, no worries—washing it off with soap and also water is absolutely good (as soap alone can failure and eliminate bacteria and viruses, consisting of the novel coronavirus), the says.

What if you don"t have a thermometer on you? space there any kind of other ways to call if you"re feverish?

If girlfriend don’t have actually immediate accessibility to a thermometer yet you’re feeling, well, warm and also icky, there are a few ways you deserve to make an educated guess regarding whether or no you actually have a fever.

Take a watch in the mirror. as soon as you’re yes, really burning increase from a fever, you may appear flushed, red in the face, and sweaty, claims Dr. Erstein.Have someone rather feel her forehead. if it’s difficult to gauge your very own temperature through the ol’ back-of-hand-to-forehead cheat (because if you room feverish, your whole body feels warm anyway), it deserve to be valuable if you have actually a family members member, roommate, or girlfriend lend a hand. “If someone else feels her forehead and it feels hot, you many likely have actually a fever,” states Dr. Erstein.

See more: The Weight Of Gasoline Per Gallon In Pounds Converter, What Is The Weight Of One Gallon Of Gas

Again, though, the only means to be completely sure her temperature’s turn off the charts is to usage a thermometer.

How long does a heat last?

This falls squarely right into the “it depends” category. “It depends totally on what’s causing the fever,” states Aline M. Holmes, DNP, RN, a clinical combine professor in ~ Rutgers University institution of Nursing. If you have actually an isolated health issue, prefer a cold or strep throat, the fever can go on for a couple of days. “If you gain started on an antibiotic with something prefer strep throat, the fever will certainly come under quickly—often in much less than 24 hours,” Holmes says.

If you have actually an active infection walking on in your body, “you can have the heat as lengthy as you have the infection,” Dr. Riar says. “It really depends on what the cause of the heat is,” she adds.

When have to you seek medical attention because that a fever?

If you feel ill and you’ve obtained a middle high fever (think: over 102 levels Fahrenheit or 38.9 degrees Celsius), that’s her cue to call a medical professional to figure out following steps, states Dr. Eitches. Otherwise? “In general, if you’re experiencing fever connected with various other symptoms such as shortness of breath, a rash, or confusion, it’s probably finest to seek clinical attention,” that says.

How do you treat a fever?

Again, it counts on what’s behind your fever, however there are a few interventions you can try. “If it’s a viral infection, you type of need to ride it out,” Dr. Riar says. “It will at some point resolve with rest.”

Taking a pains reliever and fever reducer choose acetaminophen (Tylenol) can aid you feel far better and might also help your fever to break, she says. You have the right to also shot taking a cool shower because that relief, Holmes says.

Just understand this, per Holmes: “If you’re no bothered by your fever and you’re emotion okay, you yes, really don’t must treat it.”

Lauren KrouseLauren Krouse is a freelance writer who covers health, domestic violence, and self-advocacy.
This contents is created and also maintained by a third party, and imported onto this web page to aid users provide their email addresses. You may be able to find an ext information around this and similar content at piano.io