What is Viral Fever? Check Symptoms, Causes, and Treatment


8 min read

Viral fever is a common disease that people experience with changes in season. If you want to stay away from high fever this season, better stay aware about it. Continue reading the post below to know more about viral fever, its symptoms, causes and treatment. 

As the weather changes in India, it is common for people to experience fever with high temperature and bouts of cough along with a runny nose. If the fever continues for days together, it is most likely that you are under the influence of a viral fever. Awareness and precaution is something that can keep people away from the disease. Let us learn about the symptoms, causes, precautions and treatment of viral fever and if it is covered under health insurance.

What do you mean by Viral Fever?

So, what is viral fever? Is viral and normal fever the same?  How do you differentiate between viral fever and normal fever? When you get a fever because of a viral infection, it is considered a viral fever. Viral fever can be diagnosed by checking the temperature of the person in case of both children and adults. If the temperature is higher than 98.6°F (37°C), which is the normal body temperature, it might indicate viral fever.

Viral fever mostly occurs when there is a change in season, especially during monsoon. A viral infection can  be either mild or low-grade fever when the body temperature ranges between 100.4 and 102.2 F.  In case the body temperature is 103 F or more, it is considered high grade fever.

Viral Infections like common cold are considered a low-grade fever, while high fever like dengue is considered high-grade fever. Viral fever can last from 4  – 14 days depending on many factors including low-grade or high-grade fever.

Viral fever is not considered a severe disease but it may indicate certain viral infection, which might cause complications in life if not treated well. Hence, it is advised to see a doctor if the fever stays for 2-3 days.

What are the Different Types of Viral Fever?

Five types of Viral Fever are there as seen in the table below:

Respiratory Viral Fever This fever disturbs the respiratory organ of the patient.  Flu, polio, measles, common cold, Adenovirus, and several other infections are caused by this fever
Viral enteritis This is a viral infection that affects your digestive tract system and may cause gastrointestinal conditions. Some such infections are norovirus, rotavirus, etc.
Exanthemata’s Viral Fever This viral fever causes skin issues and visible eruptions in the skin of the patient that are healed after a long time. Chickenpox, chikungunya, smallpox, etc. are a few examples
Neurologic Viral Fever This is another severe fever that hits the nervous system of the patient. It may cause neurological illnesses in the patient. Some typical signs of the fever are sudden seizures, trouble coordinating, etc.
Hemorrhagic Viral Fever This fever is life-threatening as it may cause internal bleeding. Here, the patient’s body temperature rises drastically. Some examples are dengue, ebola, yellow fever, etc.

What are the Symptoms of Viral Fever?  

Unlike the normal viral fever symptoms, the symptoms of viral fever are distinct. A viral fever accompanies symptoms like high temperature, headache, sore throat, chills, runny nose, weakness, loss of appetite, nausea, muscle/joint pain, diarrhea, dehydration, dizziness, burning of eyes or redness, sweating, skin rashes and face swelling etc.

The doctor might recommend a blood test in case of any such symptoms so that they can check if there is a bacterial infection. Once that is done, the doctor determines the cause of the fever and starts the treatment.

Read More: Tomato Flu: All About the Rare Viral Disease Symptoms and Treatment

Causes of Viral Fever 

As discussed, causes of viral fever can be mainly due to viruses which catch people and infect their cells. The body’s temperature during viral fever increases to make it livable for the virus. So, to understand the causes of viral fever, you should understand how the virus gets into the human body.

Below are some factors that causes viral fever:

  • Contact with an infected person – If a non-infected person gets in close and constant touch with an infected person, he/she may show  the symptoms of viral infection soon.
  • Inhaling the virus – If a non-infected person inhales the virus prevailing in the air while breathing, he/she may get infected. Also, in case someone with the virus sneezes and coughs near you, the droplets of the virus floating in the air are likely to infect the person if he/she inhales the same.
  • Sharing drinks and eatables – In case a non-infected person consumes the same food eaten by an infected person, it is likely that the person might get affected by the virus via the saliva of the infected person.
  • Mosquito – Mosquito is another common carrier of viral fevers and other diseases.  Here, if a mosquito bites an infected person and then bites a non-infected person, there are chances that you may get viral fever. Similarly, food that is contaminated by insects and rodents may also lead to fever.
  • Infected water – In case of children, if a child consumes water that is contaminated with a virus, it can also cause viral fever.
  • Body Fluids – Viral fever can also be caused through body fluids of an infected person.

Read More: Are Home Care Services Covered Under Health Insurance Policy?

What Complications Can Be Caused by a Viral Infection Fever?

Most cases of viral fever last for 10 days after which it normally subsides. However, if not treated, there may be cases of some serious complications, such as dehydration or a patient slipping into a coma.  Further, there may be cases like blood infection, kidney and liver failure, respiratory fever, brain inflammation, hallucination, pneumonia, multiple organ failure, and so on.  Hence, it is important to seek timely medical help to control these fatal conditions. With a comprehensive health insurance plan, you can claim the money incurred in hospitalization and other medical treatment of the patient due to any of the above-mentioned conditions.

Viral Fever Treatment  – How to cure Viral Fever?

There is no set treatment for viral fevers such as antibiotics etc. Hence, doctors generally treat the patients of viral fever as per the symptoms shown. In case of mild fever, it may subside on its own, while the high-grade fevers require medication to control the symptoms.

Below are some treatments recommended for viral fever:

  • The patient may be prescribed certain over-the-counter medicines by the doctor to control cough, cold, high temperature, and diarrhea etc.
  • The doctor may also advise the patient to drink fluids in huge quantities to stay hydrated. He/she may advise ORS to maintain body’s electrolyte balance
  • A bath with lukewarm water may also be suggested to bring the temperature down
  • The physician may suggest enough rest to the patient so that they can heal better

Procedure to diagnose Viral Fever?

Viral fever can be diagnosed by visiting your doctor and following a few diagnostic tests such as;

  • Swab tests
  • Blood tests
  • Explicit test of viral antigens
  • Antibody tests
  • Urine test

Most healthcare professionals recommend the patient get a test done for chikungunya, malaria, dengue, etc. Chest X-ray, CT scan, and other imaging tests may also be prescribed in case of severe infections.

What Measures can be taken to Prevent the Spread of Viral Fever?

Below are some measures to prevent the spread of Viral Fever:

  • Wash hands frequently – Use soap/liquid handwash to wash your hands frequently. Do not forget to wash your hands before you eat. Use a sanitizer if you do not have access to soap and water.
  • Avoid mosquito bites – Dengue and chikungunya are some viral fevers that are caused by mosquito bites. Mosquitoes act as carriers of such viruses. To prevent mosquito bites, use mosquito nets and repellents while sleeping. Also, you may wear full-sleeved clothes for better protection.
  • Stay away from direct contact with the infected – Try to avoid close contact with the patient or at least maintain a safe distance. Use masks, gloves, etc., when caring for a sick person. Children and the elderly should be kept away from the infected as they are more susceptible.

Is Viral Fever Covered under Health Insurance?

You would be glad to know that health insurance policies generally cover the viral fever treatment cost. And they also cover any other cost or healthcare complication that arises out of viral fever. However, it purely depends on the terms of the policy.

So, whatever expenses are incurred for the treatment of viral fever is reimbursed by your health insurance provider such as;

  • Hospitalization
  • OPD consultations
  • Medicines
  • Day care procedures
  • Diagnostic tests
  • Ambulance charges, etc.

However, the coverage will be available after the completion of the initial 30 days waiting period.

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How to treat viral fever at home? 

Below are some tips to treat viral fever:

  • Eat food that is warm as there is a chance of viruses growing in food stored in cold temperature
  • Keep your hands clean by washing them regularly with soap and water
  • If you can’t wash your hands, sanitize them properly
  • Don’t touch your face often
  • Don’t eat with or share food with an ill person
  • Avoid mosquito bite by using mosquito repellents and wearing full sleeves clothes
  • Boost immunity by eating healthy food
  • Get flu vaccination

Know More: List of Diseases Covered under Health Insurance Policy in India

To Sum UP

Most people get affected by viral fever during change in season, especially during monsoon. If you or any of your family members show signs of viral fever, you have to monitor your health. In case the fever exists for more than a couple of days, you should consult a doctor.

Try to analyze the causes of the fever and take precautions as needed. And if your are covered under a  health insurance plan, you may get the cost of treatment reimbursed too.

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FAQs: Viral Fever Symptoms, Causes, and Treatment

Can viral fever last for 10 days and what is Viral fever recovery time?

The viral fever usually lasts for 3-5 days if it shows mild symptoms. However, in certain cases it may take longer duration and might take up to 2 weeks for the fever to subside.

What causes viral fever?

Infections caused by viruses may cause viral fever. Viruses are minute infectious agents which infect the human body and multiply within human cells. A fever or increase in temperature is caused as body's reaction to fight the disease.

What are the symptoms of Viral fever?

Below are some symptoms:

Both joint and muscle aches
Sore throat
Runny nose
An increase in body temperature
Frequent chills

Can I get Viral fever treatment at home?

Yes, viral fever can be treated at home with the help of many home remedies. 

Which fruit is good for viral fever?

Citrus fruits and berries like oranges, lemons, and grapefruits are good for viral fever as they contain high levels of vitamin C and flavonoids. Besides, food for viral fever include soups, leafy greens, oatmeal, etc.

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Jan 09, 2023
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PayBima is an Indian insurance aggregator on a mission to make insurance simple for people. PayBima is the Digital arm of the already established and trusted Mahindra Insurance Brokers Ltd., a reputed name in the insurance broking industry with 17 years of experience. PayBima promises you the easy-to-access online platform to buy insurance policies, and also extend their unrelented assistance with all your policy related queries and services.

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