Are Fevers Harmful or Helpful?

When a person experiences an abnormally high body temperature, this is referred to as pyrexia, or fever. There’s an interesting debate within the medical community regarding the best way to handle patients who have this going on. Allow me to share my two cents…

Why do we grill hamburgers before eating them? It’s because eating raw meat can make you very sick! So how do we prevent this from happening? We fire up the grill and cook the meat until it reaches a certain temperature internally. By the time this occurs, bacteria that could have potentially hurt us is rendered harmless.

The reason our body develops a fever is because our brain detects something within our bloodstream that doesn’t belong. It responds by “firing up the grill” and raising our internal temperature. This makes it very difficult for bacteria and germs to survive.

This means fevers are intended to help us! They’re unpleasant, but if it helps get rid of something that doesn’t belong inside my body, then I’ll just tough it out. So in my opinion, popping pills to reduce a moderate fever is counterproductive.

3 Comments

Very interesting point. What do you consider a moderate fever? At what point would you actually worry and take a pill? Wondering, since I hardly get fevers.

    Hi Alessandra, it would depend on the circumstances. A “moderate fever” one might get while suffering from a cold or flu is less significant than unanticipated fevers that develop after surgery or those due to life-threatening problems like bacterial meningitis.

Charla Byington Friday at 10:43

I completely agree…when I have a headache, I sleep (if possible) or endure the pain until I can sleep…
I cannot remember the last time I had a fever, but I know that I KNOW my body will take care of itself and no amount of pain is worth compromising my health by eliminating symptoms through pharmaceutical products… There is no such thing as Disease.. only a body’s response of trying to reach homeostasis!!

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