Healthy Living

Body Temperature 96

What does body temperature 96 indicate?

Usually, the body temperature varies between 97 to 99 degrees Celsius. However, the body temperature is slightly lower in some people. It is less related to illness and more related to the way it is being measured. When the body temperature is low, it may be related to severe infection, certain medications, hormonal disease, kidney failure, low blood sugar, neurological disease and prolonged exposure to the cold. But in some cases, people in whom the temperature is measured low are healthy and their body temperature also is normal. This could be because of a bad thermometer, the person had something cold, or an error while measuring. Also, the time of the day when the temperature is measured also matters and the place that it is measured too matters. If it is measured in the armpit than in mouth, the temperature will be lower. In some people, low temperature is normal for them. But if there are doubts it is better to see the doctor.

Body temperature 96 and sweating

The body temperature is regulated by sweating which is also known as perspiration. This bodily function of sweating is controlled by the sweat gland and they release salt based fluid. Sweating can occur due to changes in the body temperature. The armpits, face, soles of the feet and palms of the hands are the common areas of sweating. It is critical to sweat in normal amounts but excessive sweating can lead to problems. Since the risk of overheating increases hence it can be quite dangerous if sweat is absent. Compared to physical damage it causes more of psychological damage. There are three million sweat glands of which the two glands that release sweat are eccrine and apocrine sweat glands. All over the body the eccrine gland is located and a lightweight, odorless sweat is produced by it. The apocrine sweat glands are in the hair follicles off the scalp, groin and armpits. The sweat released by it has a distinct odor and is fat laden. This sweat mixed with the bacteria present in the skin once it is broken down.

Sometimes due to increased adrenaline and also when the body tries to compensate the reducing blood pressure there is excessive sweating. Low blood pressure is due to the patterns of low body temperature. This happens in Wilson's temperature syndrome. The sweating is continual and upon standing rapidly the sweating becomes worse. Also, there is persistent low blood pressure. Along with profuse sweating there is sensation of dizziness or lightheadedness. In order to prevent the body from fainting, the body tries to gear up the nervous system so that it can compensate for the low blood pressure, this causes sweating. Along with excess sweating, the heart rate increases, and there are palpitations and lightheadedness.

Also, another common symptom experienced is night sweats. The person gets up from dripping sweat, at the same time it is noticed that their heart is pounding. When these people try to stand they may experience dizziness, while they are having night sweats. This may occur due to low blood pressure or low blood sugar level or due to both the reasons. If blood pressure becomes low due to low body temperature patterns, then at night the symptoms become worse. The reason being that when the person is sleeping usually they have the lowest body temperature pattern.

The sweating function is controlled by the autonomic nervous system. Most of sweat is made of water but approximately one percent of sweat is made of salt and fat. In our daily life we sweat regularly. However, other than this cause many other causes can lead to excess sweating. The primary cause of sweating is high body temperature. Other causes are emotions and stress, certain foods, certain medications and medical conditions, and menopause. There is no medical treatment needed for a normal amount of sweating, but to minimize sweating and to make oneself more comfortable, one can take some steps.

Low body temperature and surgery

One study was done in which the adult patients were given the effect of different methods of rewarming, this method was applied after surgery. As we know, during surgery patients get cold especially if the drug used was an anesthetic one. This can lead to dangerous problems such as heart problems. Patients may shiver if the body temperature reduces further. For this reason, for the patients after surgery different methods of rewarming have found out. One is by using an active warming device and another is using thermal inclusion to the patient. Further on patients in whom different rewarming technique was applied were further studied. In these group patients who had heard surgery, skin grafts or those who were deliberately kept cold during the surgery were not studied. They were compared with the normal care ones.

It was found that when active warming method was used the temperature went back to normal faster; the difference was of one hour between the two methods. Thus when this method is used in hypothermic patients this is much effective and better than the patients who were given hospital blankets. However, other benefits could not be pointed out or other disadvantages were not observed as such. According to some evidence, to rewarm the patients forced air warming is better than using radiant heaters and circulating hot water devices, but it is not known whether overall this method is the best as other methods at that time were not applied and available.

When this study was done it was found that it had moderate to low quality evidence. Generally, the patients were assigned to treatment groups by unclear methods and thus assessing patients was difficult and keeping them also was difficult. The results may be biased but the influence of this on the overall result is not clear. Every time you have low body temperature you don't need to run to the doctor, only low body temperature up to 97 degrees Celsius is considered to be normal.

Another major problem after surgery is postoperative fever. A postoperative fever is the one that develops after surgery mostly in hours or days after the surgery. Usually there is nothing to be concerned or alarming. In some cases, however, it could indicate an underlying problem. Wind, water, wound, walking and wonder drugs can cause postoperative fever. Mostly within these categories the cause of fever is known, although it can be caused by many other reasons. 

You can use over the counter medications if the body temperature is slightly higher or if recently you had a surgery. Fever can be brought down by ibuprofen and acetaminophen. They also help to reduce the symptoms. If you need an additional treatment then you may need to contact your doctor for antibiotics, anticoagulants and postural drainage, all of these will be helpful. After surgery, a low grade fever is very common and the doctor should be aware about it. If the incision is not healing and there is a fever, then one should seek medical attention as early as possible.

Low body temperature during pregnancy

Compared to a high body temperature, it is less serious to have a low body temperature in pregnant women. It is normal to have mild reductions in temperature and very rarely it becomes a health issue. Some causes of low body temperature during pregnancy are:

  • Anemia - sometimes anemia can be indicated by low body temperature. In this condition, red blood cells are lacking in the body, the body should have healthy iron level to create new red blood cells. Anemia is more common in women than in males and particularly in pregnant women. Along with this, it can even cause symptoms such as headache, dizziness and fatigue.
  • Sepsis - this is another cause in which the immune system cells attacks its own body. This condition is a bacterial infection and is a serious condition. In infants and in elderly this condition is very dangerous. Sepsis can cause low body temperature, skin color may change, breathing becomes difficult and vomiting may be experienced, one of the most common causes of maternal death is sepsis. If you are experiencing many symptoms, then you should contact your doctor.
  • Pneumonia - it occurs when the person contracts the flu, for pregnant women and for the unborn child, this condition can be quite dangerous. You should see a doctor if your temperature is very low and if you are pregnant and experiencing these symptoms. It is possible to protect baby’s health if the condition is diagnosed and treated. The time taken for the recovery process can be expedited by drinking six to eight large glasses of water, avoiding alcohol, and eating healthy foods.
  • Miscarriage - during sleep the body attains the basal body temperature that is the lowest body temperature. During the stages of pregnancy, this value of basal body temperature is the highest. The body may be preparing for miscarriage if after being boosted for 18 days or more, the temperature drops after the first month of pregnancy.

The body prepares for the fetus's safety right after conception, various changes will take place in the body. There is an increase in the blood production and there is development of new blood vessel networks. There is a significant increase in the rate of metabolism. This causes the temperature to rise slightly. This elevated body temperature is due to the increased hormonal level and their activity. Normally pregnant women experience normal body temperature. If the temperature is very high then the fetus and the mother can be harmed. Immediate medical attention is needed if the temperature becomes very high. This situation is considered to be serious.

Body temperature at 96 is not serious but below 95 is serious. The progesterone level is low hence the body temperature after conception is low. Thus the risk of miscarriage also increases. During pregnancy low body temperature may be due to anemia. The chances of anemia are more common during pregnancy as the body demands for more nutrition, so there is deficiency of iron. All this causes weakness, pale skin, dizziness and fatigue.    

Low body temperature in the morning

When the body temperature increases it means the person has a fever. An illness may cause body temperature to rise. Usually for an adult, fever is not a cause of concern unless it is very high. When the set point of the normal body temperature shifts upward then it causes fever. This occurs at the hypothalamus also known as the thermostat of the body. When the temperature shifts upwards then the person shivers so that more heat can be generated due to the chill feeling. Throughout the day, there are variations in the normal body temperature. In the morning, the body temperature is lower and in the late afternoon and night it is higher.

The most probable reason could be that people want their air conditioning on when they sleep which makes the room cool and causes the temperature to drop. Also, another reason is that throughout the day the body demands energy but this demand drops when the person is sleeping at night, due to which the body temperature also drops. There is a natural cycle that the body goes through with respect to the body temperature. Around 4 to 6 am is around the time when the person wakes up the body temperature troughs.

What to do at low body temperature

You can do the following if the body temperature is 96 or lower:

  • Drink warm or hot milk, soup, coffee or tea.
  • Dried and oily foods should be avoided. Avoid eating junk food.
  • Avoid cold foods such as food just removed from refrigerator, cold water, ice cream, and cold drinks. Eat foods that are soft and warm such as plain dal, khichdi and boiled vegetables. Also, completely avoid chilies.
  • Drink plain warm water or enerzal in warm water or coconut milk.
  • Milk or meat products that are cold should be avoided.
  • Also, avoid eating fried noodles and rice. One should not eat sour fruits such as grapes or citrus fruits. Heavy meals should be avoided and small frequent meals should be consumed in an entire day.
  • Any alcoholic drink such as beer, whiskey or wine should be avoided.
  • Three times a day gaggle with warm saline water and do steam inhalation. For five days you should rest.

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