Fever is the body’s normal response to infection and other conditions, both minor and serious. Most fevers help the body fight infection.
The average normal body temperature is 98.6°F (37°C) orally. It can change during the day from a low of 97.4°F (36.3°C) in the morning to a high of 99.6°F (37.6°C) in the late afternoon. Mild elevations—(99.8°F (37.7°C)— can be caused by too much clothing, a hot bath, or hot weather.
Fever in a child is present when a child’s temperature is 100.4°F (38°C) or higher measured rectally.
Current as of: June 26, 2019
Author: Healthwise Staff
Medical Review:William H. Blahd, Jr., MD, FACEP – Emergency Medicine & Adam Husney, MD – Family Medicine & H. Michael O’Connor, MD, MMEd, FRCPC – Emergency Medicine & David Messenger, BSc, MD, FRCPC, FCCP – Emergency Medicine, Critical Care Medicine