Cystitis symptoms - fever

Why might fever be a symptom of cystitis?


Emma Thornton
Qualified Nutritionist (BSc, MSc, ANutr)
@EmmaThornton
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An introduction to fever and cystitis

A fever is when you are experiencing a body temperature above the normal range, that is above 38C. A fever can occur when the body is trying to fight an infection. You may feel hot one minute and cold the next, or hot but shivering at the same time. A fever should not last long, but it is advisable to get it checked by a doctor, as you may need antibiotics to clear the infection.

Why does cystitis cause a fever?

Cystitis is caused by a bacterial infection in the bladder, most commonly by the bacterium Escherichia coli. Raising the your body’s temperature creates an environment in which the bacteria struggle to survive, thus helping to fight the infection.

However, a fever can also be an indication that your body is struggling to fight off the infection, and for this reason it is worth going to the doctor to check your symptoms.

Self-help, lifestyle and diet for a fever

The old words ‘sweat it out’ come from the idea that a fever is your body’s natural way of killing bacteria. For this reason, it is often advisable to let a fever run its natural course, as unpleasant as this can be. Don’t try to raise your temperature artificially to speed the process, but equally, measures such as cold baths to bring your temperature down can have a detrimental effect, and can actually cause your body to compensate and raise your temperature further. Try to stay as comfortable as possible.

If you are sweating a lot with a fever, reduce the layers you are wearing. Remember that you can lose a lot of fluid through sweat and can easily become dehydrated, so make sure that you are drinking enough water. Other types of drinks, including caffeine, alcohol and sugary drinks, can dehydrate you and raise your temperature further.

Nourishing vegetable soups can make you feel a lot better if you have a fever. They provide nutrients to help you fight infection, as well as being warm and comforting. For example, A.Vogel’s Carrot, Lentil and Coriander Soup is nutritious and gentle on your system, making a great meal if you have a fever.

Make sure that you have plenty of rest, and don’t feel guilty about taking to your bed until you are feeling better. Trying to carry on as usual will only cause your body to become exhausted and less able to fight the infection. If you take a step back and give your body a break, you are more likely to be up and well a lot more quickly than trying to battle on regardless.

Are there herbal remedies to help me?

There are herbal remedies which can help to support your recovery from a fever. Echinacea is a herb which has a long traditional use in supporting the immune system. It may be able to give your immune system support in clearing the infection and accompanying fever.

Additionally, there are herbs with a long history of traditional use in supporting the bladder. For example, Uva-ursi cleanses and disinfects the bladder, flushing out infection and simultaneously helping to reduce your fever.

What about conventional medicines?

Fevers should be checked by a doctor, particularly if they occur in children, the elderly or have lasted for more than 48 hours. Most of the time, the doctor will be able to prescribe antibiotics, which will not only lower your temperature, but also help to clear the cystitis.

In milder cases, the doctor may suggest taking over-the-counter medications that can also reduce your temperature. This could include ibuprofen, paracetamol or aspirin. Advice can be sought from your doctor or pharmacist about the best type of medication to take.

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Here’s what I recommend

Emma our women's health advisor recommends Uva-ursi complex to help ease symptoms of cystitis and cranberry to maintain bladder health.

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Did you know?

Cystitis is sometimes known as ‘honeymoon cystitis’. Why? Well, during sex, bacteria can spread from the perineum to the urethral opening. The risk of developing cystitis is therefore increased depending on the frequency you have intercourse (sorry honeymooners!).

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