A fever can be a sign of a number of illnesses, from simple things like the common cold to more serious conditions like strep throat or influenza. If you feel like you have a fever, don’t panic or rush to your medicine cabinet to try to bring it down. Using natural compounds such as herbal tea and getting healthy sleep are the first steps recommended by many doctors. These four natural fever reducers will have you feeling better in no time.
Learn how food may be fueling your chronic health issues: The Elimination Diet
The best way to catch a fever early is to use a thermometer and see if your temperature is higher than its normal range.
For most people, this is right around 98.6 degrees Fahrenheit, but some people naturally have temperatures that are a little higher or low. It’s good to know what your “normal” is so that you can tell if you actually have a fever or not.
If you don’t have a thermometer on hand, some other signs that you may have a fever include:
- Shivering and chills
- Muscle aches
- Loss of appetite
- General feeling of weakness
In general, a fever will go away on its own without much work on your part, and fevers can help your body’s immune defenses. But, if you want to reduce your fever naturally, you can try one of these five remedies:
What lifestyles provide the best night sleep? Help us learn: Sleep Quiz
This natural fever reducer  has been around for a long time, and for good reason — it works really well.
Before you go to bed, soak a pair of thin socks in water, then wring them out thoroughly and place them on your feet. Cover your wet socks with a pair of thick, dry socks (preferably made of cotton or wool). Keep both pairs of socks on while you sleep.
This treatment works by helping to circulate lymphatic fluid and blood to the feet to fight off the moisture. This improved circulation speeds up the healing process and helps bring down your fever. You can repeat it for up to 5-6 nights in a row. This fever reduction strategy isn’t to be confused with colonic hydrotherapy—which is a bit more involved process.
Bathing in lukewarm water is another safe way to gradually bring down a fever. Start by filling the tub with water that is about two degrees colder than your body’s temperature. Then, slowly add cool water to bring your temperature down even more. Soak for about 20 minutes, or until you start feeling cold.
Once your bath is over, dry yourself off and get back into bed, covering yourself with blankets. You’ll start to sweat, and your body temperature will start to lower as a result.
You can do this once a day (but no more) until your fever starts to subside.
There are a number of herbs out there that do a wonderful job of reducing fevers naturally. Some of the most popular ones include:
- Willow bark (contains salicin, the same component that makes aspirin effective) 
- Meadowsweet (another source of salicin that is easier on the stomach)
- Yarrow (promotes perspiration to naturally lower body temperature) 
- Elderberry (also promotes perspiration and counteracts inflammation to fight colds and influenza)
- Echinacea (contains antiviral and antimicrobial properties to fight fevers and infection)
The easiest way to consume these herbs is probably in the form of an herbal tea. Simply steep the dried herbs in hot water, sweetening with honey if necessary, and drink every few hours.
If you’re taking any prescription drugs, be sure to talk to your doctor before consuming herbs. Some react negatively with certain medications.
Bone broth is a must-drink when you’re dealing with any kind of sickness, including those that come with a fever.
When a fever comes on, don’t reach for sodium-packed canned or boxed soups. Instead, go for a high-quality, organic, non-GMO beef or chicken bone broth to reduce inflammation and give your immune system a boost to fight off infection faster .
Drinking bone broth will also help you stay hydrated while giving your digestive system a break to help your body recover faster.
As soon as you catch a fever, give one of these four remedies a try to bring it down naturally. Your body will heal faster and you’ll get some much-needed relief from your symptoms. Fevers are often unpleasant experiences but ultimately are part of the human body’s natural defense system. Helping to support detoxification and supporting the body during fevers is essential!
- Brr, Albert H. “Hydrotherapy in Fevers, its Rationale and Technique.” Journal of the American Medical Association, American Medical Association, 8 June 1895, jamanetwork.com/journals/jama/article-abstract/453284.
- Norn, S, et al. “[From Willow Bark to Acetylsalicylic Acid].” Dansk Medicinhistorisk Arbog., U.S. National Library of Medicine, 2009, www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/20509453.
- Ohio State University. “Ohio Perennial and Biennial Weed Guide.” Ohio Weedguide, www.oardc.ohio-state.edu/weedguide/single_weed.php?id=34.
- Farrell, N J, et al. “Black Elderberry Extract Attenuates Inflammation and Metabolic Dysfunction in Diet-Induced Obese Mice.” The British Journal of Nutrition., U.S. National Library of Medicine, 28 Oct. 2015, www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/26314315.
- Lindenmuth, G F, and E B Lindenmuth. “The Efficacy of Echinacea Compound Herbal Tea Preparation on the Severity and Duration of Upper Respiratory and Flu Symptoms: a Randomized, Double-Blind Placebo-Controlled Study.” Journal of Alternative and Complementary Medicine (New York, N.Y.)., U.S. National Library of Medicine, Aug. 2000, www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/10976979.
- Rennard, B O, et al. “Chicken Soup Inhibits Neutrophil Chemotaxis in Vitro.” Chest., U.S. National Library of Medicine, Oct. 2000, www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/11035691.