How to tell if you have a fever without a thermometer


In the presence of chills and pains, or simply a feeling of discomfort and heat when touching the forehead, the doubt arises that there is a fever. Fever tends to act as an indicator of the presence of a virus or bacterial infection that the body is trying to fight off. During the cold season, then, feverish states are more common. If you don’t have a thermometer you can judge if the temperature is above normal without measuring.

Fever without thermometer at a glance

Can you measure fever without a thermometer?

The only way to know for sure that you have a fever is to take your temperature with a thermometer, clinically diagnosable unless it is 38.9 degrees or higher (in this case it can also be determined by placing a hand on the forehead). A fever occurs when the body temperature is higher than normal, i.e. above 37 degrees. Knowing precisely whether or not you have a fever without a thermometer is a fair guess.

Better digital or mercury?

Is an old mercury thermometer or digital thermometers better? The seconds are certainly more precise and less delicate. Older generation thermometers are much more prone to breaking, cracking. Mercury (a silvery white liquid still found in some household thermometers) can also leak and is toxic.

Obviously, before proceeding with the measurement, either with a traditional or digital thermometer, it is advisable to disinfect it with a sanitizing wipe before placing it in the medicine cabinet.

Today, technology has also made progress to measure fever without a thermometer. In fact, there are several applications free for smartphones and tablets that are able to detect body temperature in a more or less precise way, even through the camera. The fever level is calculated by analyzing the heartbeat and the temperature variations.

Signs of fever

  • Excessive heat perceptible on the forehead
  • Chills and tremors
  • Tiredness that goes beyond typical end-of-day fatigue,
  • Heachache,
  • sudden muscle pains,
  • redness in the face,
  • Cold sweat
  • Sore eyes
  • Loss of appetite
  • Difficulty concentrating
  • Swollen lymph nodes

If you don’t have a thermometer but feel heat and general discomfort, broken bones, a cold, there are “less scientific” ways to figure out whether or not you have a fever. Listening to your body: heat, shivering, tiredness beyond typical end-of-day tiredness, or headaches, body aches, flushed face, cold sweat.

To understand if you have a fever, you can take some actions that can reveal it:

  • Get moving: take a brisk walk, go up and down the stairs at home, and see if you feel easily tired, weak, or weak
  • Touching the forehead: back of the hand against the forehead (because if you are feverish, the whole body still feels hot),

Fever without thermometer in children

The appearance of temperature in children aged between 18 and 24 months it is quite common and normal up to 37.5°. It is possible that some minor pathologies cause high fever, while serious illnesses associated with symptoms such as difficulty breathing or confusion and delirium, the temperature can even exceed 40 -41 degrees, and is considered dangerous. The first symptom that appears and indicates fever even without a thermometer is an abnormal and intense heat on the forehead and red cheeks.

Duration of fever

How long does the fever last? This falls squarely into the category of subjectivity. It entirely depends on what is causing the fever. If you have a cold or a sore throat, the fever may continue for a few days. However, if you attack it right away by taking an antibiotic, the fever will go down quickly, often in less than 24 hours. If there is a bacterial infection causing the fever, it will subside as the infection resolves.

When to call the doctor

When should medical help be called for fever? In case of moderately high fever (above 38.9 degrees), it is advisable to call a doctor to understand which appropriate therapy to undertake. In general, if you experience fever associated with other symptoms such as shortness of breath, rash, or confusion, you will need to see an urgent visit.


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