Fever is the body's way of telling us that something is wrong with it, i.e., it is one of the most common signs of several diseases and disorders. In fact, when there is an infection, the body raises the temperature to fight off this infection. Therefore, fever is commonly seen when suffering from infectious diseases like common cold and flu. On the other hand, headache is also one of the common condition experienced by people at least once in their life. A headache experienced in rare cases is not a cause for worry.
However, if you experience headaches frequently, or those that last for a long time, you should definitely look out for the root cause of the same. Secondly, if headache is accompanied by fever, then it is a sure sign that you may be suffering from some underlying health condition. Let us find out the causes, and also see how to treat them.
Causes of Headache and Fever
These symptoms together can be found in minor cases like common cold, or even in severe conditions like meningitis. Secondly, as mentioned above, fever is usually observed when suffering from any infectious disease. Therefore, in most of the cases, it is found that headache with fever in adults is caused due to infections.
Viral infections are the most common causes of fever and headache. Viral infections like common cold and influenza (or flu) are typical examples. Sore throat, tonsillitis, respiratory tract infections, bronchitis, pneumonia, hepatitis, glandular fever, measles, ear infections are some infections that lead to fever and headache. Blood tests and tests of samples of bodily fluids helps in diagnosis of viral infections. It should be noted that viral infections can cause both, minor conditions like common cold; and even life-threatening ones like pneumonia.
Similarly, several bacterial infections also lead to these symptoms. Bacterial infections to the respiratory tract, or the central nervous system also give rise to these symptoms. Urinary tract infections, strep throat, tonsillitis, food poisoning, meningitis, gastroenteritis, bronchitis, tuberculosis, pneumonia, typhoid fever, brain abscess, ear infections are some bacterial infections that cause fever and headache. Bacterial infections are usually severe, and hard to detect than viral infections. However, tests of blood culture, urine culture, or spinal culture can help in diagnosis of these infectious diseases.
Apart from infectious diseases, there are several diseases that can cause headache accompanied with fever in adults. Diseases like anemia, malaria, cancer, tumor, and disorders like diarrhea, constipation, food allergy, high or low blood pressure, difficulties in menstruation (in women), severe deficiencies of vitamins and minerals and stress can also give rise to these symptoms. The diseases caused due to disorders, other than infectious diseases, are usually accompanied with other signs and symptoms which makes them easier to diagnose. However, you need to consult the doctor as early as possible as these disorders are severe than the aforementioned ones.
If suffering from gastrointestinal disorders, one may also experience other symptoms like nausea, vomiting, diarrhea and dehydration. Infections of the central nervous system also give rise to other symptoms like stiffness of the neck, confusion, along with fever and headaches. In modern times, there is an increase in the number of people suffering from tension headaches and migraines due to stress. This headache, caused by stress, can also be followed by fever.
Treating Headache and Fever
High fever and headache is a cause of concern and hence, if one suffers from it, he should look for quick medical treatment. It can be a symptom of any of the above mentioned causes, and it is wise to look for immediate medical treatment for the same. Headache and fever, if caused due to viral infections like common cold, can treated with for over-the-counter medications or home remedies. Secondly, bacterial infections can be treated with the help of prescription antibiotics. Using a cold compress, and taking bed rest is also one of the helpful methods to relieve pain. However, these should be followed only in minor cases, and only after you consult a doctor.
Lastly, we can conclude by saying that although it is not essential to rush to the hospital every time you have a headache or fever; it is still recommended to get the underlying condition diagnosed and treated effectively, before it is too late. Take care!