Tuesday, March 9, 2010

Do Not Kill a Fever


Have you been influenced by modern allopathic medicine's obsession with lowering fever?

I know I have.

Ever since the turn of the 20th century, using drugs to lower fevers has been standard operating procedure for most allopathic medicine practitioners ... you know, "take two aspirins and call me in the morning."

Aspirin-type medications (along with good 'ol Tylenol) may be needed sometimes for pain management and/or reduction ... but when it comes to reducing fever of any type, bacterial or viral, taking an OTC drug to reduce fever is not the way to go.

Suppressing fevers can increase rapid viral replication ... resulting in a berserk effort by an overwhelmed immune system to fight back.  This is known as a cytokine storm which can have disastrous, terrible results.

What Fever Is Actually About

This part may be a tad bit technical for some ... and somewhat contradictory on the surface ... but, basically, fever is the immune system's first alarm response by sending T-Cells to fight antibodies.

The T-Cell attacks can kill bacterial pathogens. 

Fevers are also part of the clean up process for toxic bacterial waste products.

But viruses are not killed by T-Cells as bacteria are ... and viruses are not living microorganisms that rummage about internally looking for food to scavenge, as bacteria do ... a viruses do not have nucleus cells that divide to create more microbes, as bacteria do either.

Viruses replicate.

(That's where the seeming contradiction comes into play ... it really is hard to explain the difference, but there IS a difference between bacteria and viruses.)

But, anyway, when the body's thalamus/thyroid reaction raises the internal body temperature, as in a FEVER, that internal heat can actually STOP viruses from replicating.

Any attempt to reduce fever during a viral influenza attack may actually accelerate the virus's rapid replication process, and produce viral pneumonia or worse.

So ... please leave a fever alone to stop the viral replication process.

Leave a fever alone, period.

Once again, fever is part of our immune system's clean up from bacteria waste products, and/or an attempt to halt viral replication .. a fever is PROOF our bodies are working properly!

Fever Phobia in Pediatrics

The frantic effort to reduce fever in children under six years of age is alarming.  Not only parents, but many doctors fall into this fever phobia phenomena.  And there as a time ... not too long ago ... that I did, too.

There is a Meningitis concern ... so if there are convulsions from the child's rise in temperature ... that should, of course, be checked and ruled out.  However, it must be said, the occurrence of Meningitis is actually extremely rare ... for only 5% to 10% of children under six get febrile convulsions, and those usually last for only a few minutes.

The commonly misdirected concern is that a high fever in a young child can create brain damage, but the actual situation is that other acute (rapid onset) illnesses or vaccinations are the real causes of brain damage ... not the fever itself.

Fever is an effect of a cause, NOT a cause ... fever is a symptom, NOT a disease in and of itself.

The fever phobia has led parents, and maybe some doctors, to alternate Tylenol with Motrin (or any Ibuprofen) in a desperate effort to reduce fevers.  I did it, too ... and I have even recommended it - ha!

This alternating effort has occasionally resulted in more serious damage, I have found out, and sometimes even death.

The American Academy of Pediatrics now advises against these desperate measures to reduce fever ... now they, at most, advise sticking with one medication ... and using conservative doses carefully.

A Blast From the Past - Feed a Cold; Starve a Fever

Remember that one?  Well, there is truth in it.

It is extremely rare that a fever will exceed 106 degrees Fahrenheit (or 41 degrees Celsius.)  But a solid fever (101 and over) needs to be starved ... especially if viral influenza is being experienced or suspected.

The liver is the clearing house for both digestion and detox.  It is recommended  that one fast on very light broths and purified water to assist the overburdened liver during the body's fever process of getting rid of the body's microbe waste materials quicker.

Another Blast from the Past - Sweat It Out

It was quite common for many to observe that by not trying to cool off ... and by actually bundling up more, and allowing the body heat to induce increased sweating ... that the next day the fever broke or reduced significantly.

But, even with that , the notion of the Old Wives' Tale was to break the fever.

What was really happening was that by encouraging the fever to completely take over, the fever did its job and was no longer needed!
Often a fever is accompanied by chills ... even to the point of shivering.  That makes it easy to bundle up and sweat!

But sometimes that is not the case... and if so, then it takes a willful effort to follow the "bundle up and sweat" protocol.

So. please, never mind and forget the "breaking the fever with or without medication" as the ultimate goal.

Let your fever help you heal.

It's the condition of the patient that matters more than the fever ... someone who is very ill without fever should cause more concern than someone running a high fever but resting well while taking in fluids and eating little.

Because as I said ... a fever is PROOF your body is WORKING for you!


1 comment:

  1. I usually dont do anything except take a pill once in a long while


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