cough, Sore throat low grade fever: am I infected?
Just because you have a sore throat with low grade fever or a cough with low grade fever, doesn’t mean that you are infected with coronavirus. But we cannot lower our guards. We need to track fever cautiously.
So there’s a new ritual that lots of us share right now. Checking one’s temperature to check whether we have a fever or not. And it’s understandable. Fever is a common symptom of COVID-19.
Why is fever tracking important?
If you happen to visit a virus affected zone, or interacted with a person suspected to be a virus carrier, Monitor body temperature, and even when in good health will help detect diseases early. If you develop a fever, don’t panic.
First of all, fever is an immediate response automated by our immune system. A part of your brain is called the hypothalamus– (The principle of fever) plays the role in it. It is responsible for constantly adjusting your temperature to the best environment to maintain body function
Body temperature varies with gender, age, and overall health and environmental factors. The normal temperature is about 98.6 degrees Fahrenheit, but recent research shows that the average body temperature is slightly lower.
But if you’re hoping your trendy looking thermometer is going to throw up a nice-looking temperature of 98.6°F or 37°C, then you might learn something new about yourself today.
First reading – 97.35 °F
Second reading – 98.1 °F
Third reading – 97.2 °F
Fourth reading – Very low
So, it turns out that “98.6°F” isn’t the ideal or normal body temperature.
When your immune system detects the presence of a virus in your body, it sends a signal to your hypothalamus to raise body temperature. Fever creates a hot hostile environment. It will weaken the virus and stimulate your immune response. When the body temperature is higher than 100 degrees Fahrenheit, It tells that that your body is fighting infection
In other words, there’s no such thing as normal or ideal body temperature, it is an ideal range of temperature between 97°F (36.1°C) to 99°F (37.2°C).
By regularly monitoring your temperature, you can understand your normal body temperature. You can immediately detect a slight increase in body temperature. This may be an early warning sign that you are going to be sick. You may get infected after a few days
Then how come this number came to existence?
The number 98.6 mostly came from 19th-century German researcher Carl Reinhold August Wunderlich. He claims to have measured and recorded body temperature of more than a million patients. And he arrived at the number of 98.6.
That number has stuck around ever since. But the person to person it’s kind of meaningless. Wunderlich himself knew that body temperature varied.
He recorded a healthy range from 97.25- 99.5 °Fahrenheit in his subjects.
Given these points, there are few things we can all do to reduce the risk of transmission, both for our benefit and those around us
You can take immediate steps to protect others. This is essential for diseases such as COVID-19.
Experts suggest that you
- measure your body temperature twice a day
- About the same time of day
- 30 minutes after waking up every morning
- Test again at night
(Preferably use the same thermometer for each measurement)
15 minutes before taking the temperature. Avoid eating or drinking hot or cold things. Never measure the temperature immediately after exercise
Most people are coolest in the morning and warmest in the early evening. It’s a reflection of your body’s natural rhythms, your digestion, hormone production and cognition, and more.
Similarly, other bodily cycles like ovulation can cause small swings in temperature too and different parts of you are different temperatures. Under the tongue, armpit, forehead, and rectal readings are all likely to be unique. Point is there are tons of variables
We could be moving around with many temperatures all at once all the time and still be perfectly healthy.
But being sick is another story, the temperature can still telling you a lot about your health.
Make sure to follow all instructions:
- clean the thermometer after every use
- Track your temperature on notepads and charts
- Or use a confidential tracking app (So you can view the results at any time)
- And immediately draw attention when there are any changes
- If you have a fever or any abnormal condition
- Isolate yourself at home based on your specific symptoms
- Monitor your symptoms and call a doctor when needed
- If you must go out, be sure to wear a mask
- Keep at least six feet ( to be very safe) away from others
Temperature can differ noticeably across
I have a “sore throat low grade fever”, am I suffering from COVID 19?
With a sore throat and a low grade fever, you may or may not have COVID 19.
In short, when you get sick, many of your body natural predictable rhythms start to destabilize. Your temperature might fluctuate more radically and it might crank up above your natural range.
That’s your body triggering a fever to make it less hospitable to viruses or bacteria. In other words, your body temperature gets anomalous.
Though that’s trouble for you, but people tracking COVID, its crucial data. It helps to tracks the spread of infectious diseases using fevers. By getting the temperature and making a database out of it, an almost real-time health weather map can be made.
It shows possible hot spots of COVID. Let’s take our database, and remove the expected value of cold and flu. What’s leftover is residual. That residual in this particular analysis is a typical fever cluster. Concluding that, there’s a very high correlation between these hot spots and COVID-19 cases.
By monitoring the temperature changes, you can figure out the infected body temperature.
Now the question is, can a tiny temperature rhythm predict brewing infections like COVID?
Scientists are still learning more about how the human body regulates itself and respond to disease. And along the way, we might let go of some assumptions about what’s normal and healthy. – Obsessing about 98.6 is wrong.
Everybody should have a nice daily rhythm of their temperature. The only time your temperature is constant is when you’re dead and its room temperature. So thinking about the patterns of change rather than the absolute number is much more important.
In conclusion, just because you have a sore throat with low grade fever or a cough with low grade fever, doesn’t mean that you are infected with coronavirus. But we cannot ignore and become a super spreader. We need to inform the concerned authorities.
There are a lot of smart people working hard to make this situation better, our awareness is their strength.
(For informational purpose only. Consult your local medical authority for advice.)