What is Meant by Normal Temperature of the Human Body?

The temperature of the human body in a non-diseased state is called the normal temperature. 

Is it an absolute value?

No, it is not an absolute value. Though the “textbook value” of body temperature is considered 98.6 degrees F (37.0 degrees C), it is actually a range.

What is its importance?

The body and its organs can function optimally only when the temperature is in the normal range. Outside that range, the functions start deteriorating. A temperature wide off that range is not compatible with life.

What is the normal range?

While no exact value can be fixed, the limits are generally considered 97.0 degrees F (36.1 degrees C) to 99.0 degrees F (37.2 degrees C).

What causes changes in temperature?

What causes changes in temperature?

There are many, many factors. There is a variation with the time of the day, variations in the waking and sleeping states, variations depending on hormonal status, on exercising, and the list of factors goes on and on.

When should I consider myself to have fever?

Anything above 99.0 degrees F is suspicious, and the temperature should be charted at regular intervals. Anything above 100.0 degrees F is definitely a fever, and requires investigation.

What should I do if I have fever?

The correct thing is to consult your doctor.

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Dr Arun K Mehra

DrArun K Mehra is a Senior Consultant in Anesthesiology and Critical Care, working in Delhi. An MBBS from UCMS, Delhi University, he specialized in Anesthesiology from JNMC, AMU, Aligarh. He has also done an MBA in Healthcare Administration from the Faculty of Management Studies, Delhi University, a UNESCO Certificate on Principles of Bio Ethics and Human Rights, and a Diploma in Creative Writing in English from the Indira Gandhi National Open University.

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