What to look out for
A normal temperature is between 36 and 36.8ºC (96.8 and 98.2ºF). Temperatures above 38°C (100.4°F) are high.
Many things can cause a high temperature but it usually means you have an infection of some kind such as a cold or flu. However, a high temperature can also be due to other infections so it is important to look at all your symptoms.
Remember, you can still be sick even if you don’t have a high temperature. If you are worried that you may be seriously ill, get medical help immediately even if you don’t have a high temperature.
What can you do
Talk to your pharmacist and use either paracetamol or ibuprofen to reduce temperature and relieve pain. You can take paracetamol or ibuprofen if you are on antibiotics as antibiotics do not reduce a fever or relieve pain.
If you are on other medication, ask your pharmacist if you can take ibuprofen with it. For example, you should not take ibuprofen with warfarin (a medicine to thin the blood). Also, if you are allergic to certain anti-inflammatory medicines (such as NSAIDs), ibuprofen is not suitable for you.
Start by taking either paracetamol or ibuprofen (if ibuprofen is suitable for you). If one doesn’t work, try the other. You can take both of these medicines safely as long as you do not take more than the recommended daily dose for each one.
When to seek help
A high temperature may be a cause for concern but is rarely a reason to panic. However, if you feel particularly unwell or if you have a high temperature for more than three days, get medical advice.
As you can probably guess, this website can’t replace the advice you might get from a health professional. If you are worried, please call or visit your GP or pharmacist.