What are the common causes of fever and night sweats?

Fever and night sweats are symptoms that can have a variety of causes, from normal hormonal changes, especially during menopause, to serious medical conditions like tuberculosis. Treatment options are as varied as the possible causes, as the underlying condition must be diagnosed and properly treated on an individual basis.

Night sweats often occur when a fever is present. Common infections, such as the common cold, can cause both symptoms in some patients, and they usually go away on their own once the infection resolves. There is no effective medication to treat most viral illnesses, such as colds, but over-the-counter medications often relieve symptoms. Bacterial infections can also cause fever, and prescription antibiotics are often prescribed for those that the body cannot recover from on its own.

Menopausal women often experience fevers and night sweats due to hormonal fluctuations during this time. When these symptoms are present, the gynecologist will often perform blood tests to determine if estrogen levels are normal. In some cases, hormone replacement therapy can help relieve these menopausal symptoms. Sleep aids may be prescribed as insomnia often occurs as a result of hormonal changes.

If these symptoms become a persistent problem, a medical professional will likely order tests to determine if there is a serious illness, such as tuberculosis or leukemia. Early diagnosis of these conditions can increase the chance of symptom relief and help prevent complications. However, in most cases, these symptoms are not related to serious conditions like these.

There are some lifestyle changes and home remedies that can help relieve fever and night sweats. For example, some people find that lowering the temperature of the room before bed will often allow them to sleep better, avoiding insomnia due to the discomfort of these troublesome symptoms. It is also helpful to take a cold shower and drink a glass of water just before going to bed.

Taking a dose of aspirin or acetaminophen just before bed can reduce the fever that often leads to night sweats. Avoiding exercise or hot baths just before bedtime can also help prevent these symptoms. Caffeine, cigarettes, and alcohol can raise your blood pressure, which increases the chance of night sweats, so avoiding these things late at night can be beneficial. Many patients also benefit from keeping a sleep log, which helps keep track of anything that may be contributing to the problem, such as room temperature or emotional stress.

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