How Long Does a Fever Last?

A sick woman slouches on the sofa. She holds a folded hand towel over her forehead while checking the temperature reading on her thermometer.

A fever is a common side effect of certain illnesses, like the flu. It happens when there is a temporary rise in the body’s normal internal temperature and is a sign your body’s fighting an infection or other illness.

Average body temperature for adults range between 97 and 99 degrees Fahrenheit; when adults have an internal body temperature between 100.4 and 102.2 degrees Fahrenheit, they have a low-grade fever. While a low-grade fever isn’t usually serious or life-threatening, it’s a warning sign that something isn’t quite right. And a high or persistent fever could be a sign of a serious health condition that needs urgent medical attention.

So, how long does a fever last?

Most low-grade fevers go away without medical intervention after 1 to 3 days, but a persistent or chronic fever may last or keep coming back for more than 10 days. If you have a low-grade fever that does not go away after 1 to 3 days, or it is accompanied by other symptoms like pain or burning with urination, mild to moderate ear pain, moderate vomiting or moderate diarrhea, it’s essential to seek urgent medical care. Coastal Urgent Care of Houma is equipped to treat fevers associated with things like bladder infections, ear infections, colds, and the flu.

When is a fever too high?

If you have a high-grade fever (103 degrees Fahrenheit or higher) for more than 3 days, your symptoms get worse, or you experience new symptoms, then it’s important to get urgent medical care. A fever might be a sign of serious illness, particularly if you have the following symptoms:

  • A severe headache
  • Dizziness
  • Sensitivity to bright light
  • Stiff neck or neck pain
  • Skin rash
  • Difficulty breathing
  • Frequent vomiting
  • Dehydration
  • Stomach pain
  • Muscle cramps
  • Confusion
  • Seizures

Additional signs a fever may be serious include:

  • Pain or burning sensation while urinating
  • Not urinating enough
  • Passing dark urine
  • Passing urine that smells bad

If you have a fever with severe vomiting, or severe vomiting with blood, visit your nearest emergency room.

Visit Amory Urgent Care to get the treatment you need for a persistent or severe fever. Our skilled specialists can quickly diagnose your medical condition and give you the help you need quickly, so you can start feeling better fast. We welcome walk-in appointments for colds, flu, and fever 7 days a week.