Fever is not a disease: Know the beneficial effects

Medical professionals have always been debating a question – is fever a friend or foe? One satisfying answer could be that fever is not a disease but a valuable and revealing symptom. 





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A condition with elevated body temperature is called fever. The body starts generating heat faster than losing it. Fever is one of the ways our immune system tries to fight an infection. It indicates that the body is fighting an infection. A variety of causes inducing fever includes anxiety, injury caused to brain by accidents or tumor growths, bacterial and viral infections.


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The normal temperature of the body is 98.6 degree Fahrenheit (37.2 degree centigrade). When the temperature is slightly above normal (above 98.6 degree Fahrenheit and below 100.4 degree Fahrenheit), it is called low grade fever. The temperature of the body rises so that it acts a defense against viruses and bacteria which cannot thrive at high temperatures.



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Not all fevers are harmful. As long as there is no discomfort, the low grade fevers could be ignored. But high temperature with discomfort should be given immediate medical attention. Otherwise it may result in disability or death. Very high fever in young children may even result in seizures.


To one’s surprise, fever has some beneficial effects too. It forces the body to produce more bacteria fighting white blood cells and bacteria killing antibodies. Sometimes it even increases production of hormone which combats the stress placed on the body by disease.


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