Homeopathy tips for 10/27/09 The Importance of Fever

One of the most common concerns of parents is that their child has a fever and does not feel well. Usually this is the first sign of an illness and the parents want their children’s temperature  to return to normal. Often they have Acetaminophen and give it to their child routinely to lower the fever. This is not always the best course of action. Fever is the body’s natural defense, and  if understood, can be worked with and not suppressed for the best and healthiest response to illness.

Fever is controlled hyperthermia. Most often it results from an infection somewhere in the body but may be caused by other conditions as well (cancer, allergic reactions, central nervous system reactions). White blood cells, injured tissues and macrophages release pyrogens that act directly on the hypothalamus causing it to release prostaglandins. The prostaglandins in turn cause the hypothalmic thermostat to reset to a higher temperature initiating heat-promoting mechanisms of the body. As a result vasoconstriction (blood vessel constriction) occurs and restricts blood flow to the surface of the body. As the surface heat declines and the skin becomes cool to touch shivering occurs to raise the body temperature. These are the chills during fever.This is a sure sign that the body temperature is rising.

The temperature rises until the body reaches the new temperature setting. The body will maintain this new temperature setting until it is either suppressed by drugs or the disease resolves itself. The body’s need for fever will end and the temperature will return to normal. Once the feedback is given for the body to lower the temperature, the heat loss mechanisms swing into action and cause sweating to release the body heat. This is when we know the fever has “broke”.

As the body has increased it’s metabolic rate it reduces the environment for most bacterias and virus to grow. Bacteria require large amounts of iron and zinc to proliferate, but during a fever the liver and spleen sequester these minerals and they become less available.  Fever also increases the cellular metabolic rate and speeds up the  cellular reparation and immune response.

Normal body temperature is 98.6 degrees F. (37 degrees C.) but can vary greatly in normal conditions. Some people have lower baseline body temperature and others higher. Any temperature less than 100.3 F. is considered normal for most children. Therefore most low temperature response that do not distress the child do not require a medical evaluation.  Temperatures in excess of 100.4F. are considered abnormal and deserve attention especially in infants younger than 3 months.

Common causes of fever are colds, flu and other infections. Most often the illness is self resolving and the fever is the body’s normal healthy response. I usually do not worry about any fever that is less than 104.5F. (40.3C.).  Fever over 104.5F. are dangerous because excess heat denatures (inactivates) enzymes and brain damage may occur. If the fever is related to a known illness, then monitoring the fever over time is necessary. Some illness do not resolve so quickly and the body will still have need for fever. If the nature of the illness is unknown then any fever lasting more than 3 days or higher than 104.5F should be thoroughly investigated.

The most common allopathic treatment for fever is acetamenophin or ibuprophen. Aspirin should be avoided because it can react with some viral infections and can cause a serious condition called Reye’s Syndrome. Reye’s Syndrome causes inflammation of the brain and liver degeneration and can be fatal.

Thankfully there are other ways to lower fever and homeopathic remedies that can help. Putting the person in a bathtub of warm water and sponging them will cause evaporation and lower the body temperature. This can bring relief when the fever is contributing to overall discomfort.

There are many remedies that have indications in fever. But fever in itself is not usually the cause for prescription. It is the addition symptoms and observations of the person that will lead to the correct remedy. Look for mental symptoms, thirst, body color, restlessness and other symptoms of the malady to come to a remedy for fever. Good questions to ask the client are: Does the fever alternate with chills? Does wrapping up help the fever or does cool air feel best? Is the fever dry or is the person perspiring? Is there something that happened to them before the fever appeared? Is there any pattern to the fever?

Remedies for common simple fever include (but by no means is complete);

  • Aconite – After exposure to cold, dry air, wind especially after perspiring. Skin is hot and dry. Very thirsty. Restless.
  • Belladonna – Face red. Throbbing headache. Head hot and feet are cold. Sweating on covered parts. Delirium with the fever. Hallucinations.
  • Bryonia – Dryness of mouth, lips. Cough with little or no expectoration. Pain in the chest with cough. The person wants to lie down and be motionless. Great thirst for large quantities of water at long intervals. Stool dry, hard. Constipation.
  • Gelsemium – The person will be drowsy and sleepy. Eyes half open. Confusion and cannot think straight. Wants to be still and quiet, does not want to talk or have others around.
  • Mercurius Vivus – Creeping chilliness. Chills alternate with heat. Profuse sweat during heat that does not bring relief. Tongue soft, flabby with indentations of the teeth.
  • Nux Vomica – Great heat. Whole body burning hot yet any movement brings on the chill. After any over indulgence. Inharmonious, ineffectual urging.
  • Pulsatilla – Constant chilliness even in a warm room. Mouth dry yet thirst-less.
  • Pyrogeneum – Taste putrid. Very restless. Temperature oscillating high, then low then high again. Pulse abnormal, quick and out of proportion to the temperature. Or high temperature and low pulse.
  • Rhus Toxicodendron – When caused by getting wet. Cold rainy weather exposure. Whole body painful. Great restlessness, must constantly change positions, which gives some relief.

In the Complete 2009 Repertory there are 786 remedies under Fever, Heat; GENERAL. Because fever is such a general symptom, you must take the case of the person and prescribe to the whole. Particulars about fever are important as well as other symptoms of the illness. In and of itself, fever is the best way for the natural immune response to be expressed. Encourage those suffering fever  to not suppress it. Educate them in the importance of the fever and how it is helpful. By getting good rubrics and prescribing accurately not only will fever resolve but so will the illness. Homeopathy again can come to the rescue.

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23 comments so far

  1. B.K.Khurana on

    The article deals exhaustively with the fever, which is not a disease at all.

    • Abdul Nasir on

      I firstly thank you for the artical and secondly thank the B.K. Khurana for the comments which denys the imortance of this sing and symptom calling it not a disease. In case if he was able to percieve the Homeopathic Teachings that Homeopathy deals with the patient and not the disease and we wouldn’t need any argument on the point of disease.
      Hope he would reconsider his statement, though it is short.

    • Robert on

      Hi B.K. Khurana,
      I agree, fever is not a disease. It can be but I did not address all of the possible specific fever related diseases in this article but merely elaborated on the importance of fever. It is a normal immune function but is so often misunderstood and suppressed. Please read the article with care. I hope you benefited from it, if nothing more than a reminder. Thanks for your comment, Robert

    • teji on

      d/sir
      millian thanks for this valuable tip but i hv patiant s/fever frm last 6year hv 99 temp.and legs pain lethargic leg.can u sugest me any medicine for her.ihv given all medicines witch u hv gine thanks

  2. Dr.Ranjit Singh on

    Thanks for the tips you have given for fever.These tips are very useful for homoeopaths.I think your labour will bring fruit & will not be wasted.O.k
    Dr.Ranjit singh

  3. Silna on

    Thanks for tips on fever. I think people panic to quickly when there kids have a fever. Its best to wait for a while and see what happins before you give anything.

  4. Dr.H.C.Malaker on

    Thanks Dr.Robert Field,your timely tips will certainly help to treat the patient following the guide lines as mentioned by you.Fever generally hard to treat with homeopathic medicines which doesn’t come under normal temperature within 2to3 days but if we can find out the cause and its nature that can be brought under quick controll.Hopefully i want to know from other respected doctors of this forum to please share their clinical achievent as how we can bring the high temparature under control like typhoid,malaria,infected fever caused by any outer or inner infectition.Thanks,malaker

  5. Benjamin on

    A charming point, but it is addressing symptoms…

    • Robert on

      Hi Benjamin, Fever is a natural response for the body and is a symptom that helps describe the condition of the whole person. It is those symptoms that help us determine a remedy. I believe I made this clear in the article. I do not understand the point of your comment. Thanks, Robert Field

  6. R.N.Gupta on

    I have gone thru the article and find it more educative. People get worried on fever they should wait & find the actual cause before starting the treatment of the same. Thanks

  7. Dr.Sarfaraz on

    One should try to avoid suppression of fever.There is need to differentiae between viral and bacterial fevers also.

    Article is very important

  8. Iyke on

    Thanks, Robert your constant peace of imformation which helpsin no small way in educating the lay as well as the professionals.
    More grease to you elbows.

  9. Mohmmed ibrahim on

    Dear Sir,

    Indeed an educative &an eyeopenner.
    Will you please throw light on Palpitation,
    Its causes &homeopathic remedies.Iam looking
    forward to your Tips.
    Thank U.

  10. dr naseermuhammad on

    respect robert

    Baptasia and Rhust tox both are Important remedy

    for typhoid fever. both have cured important symptom

    for the fever. Eup.perf is good remedy body aching

    time is 7to9am. apis is the good remedy for malaria

    time is 3 pm. Nat mur is good remedy for fever the time

    10 to 11 am. lyco fever timing is 4 to 8 p.m

  11. dr.mukesh varshney on

    dear dr. robert
    this article is very educative.that shows power of homeopathy.as you mention in your article about side effect of allopathic medicine,people should think about alternative system of medicine, which can give him harmless recovery.
    robert,your article surely teach the people and they will really think over it.

  12. mazhar on

    Any ailment accompanied by fever is a sign of some complications. Seizures followed by high fever is probably due to hyper pyrexia. It may be followed by delirium tremens in some cases.
    It is necessary to Individualize the patient’s symptoms for the selection of a correct remedy. Fevers may be

    1.Simple fever
    2.Intermittent fever
    3.Remittent fever
    4. Hectic fever

    In a simple fever or a so called viral fever we have following remedies as per the indication.

    a)Aconite: No perspiration , body is dry, body ache and tossing about is the characteristic of the remedy.

    b)Bell: There is perspiration flushed face headache , comes on suddenly and disappear suddenly (characteristic) . High fever muttering delirium or delirium tremens

    c) Gels: High fever, dullness, drowsiness, does not like to move, but movement do not hurt. Better while quite.

    d)Ars.alb: High fever with periodicity > at 1AM and 1PM. Thirsty, drinks little at a time, vomiting. body ache relieved by warm drink or hot application. Lips chapped , dry and scaly.

    e)Bryonia Alb: high fever with bursting headache, body aching relieved by rest, aggrav. by movement. Thirsty but drinks large quantity at a time.
    f)ver.vir: for hectic fevers. Where the temperature is 99 degr.Farenheit and fever comes generally in the evening and go away in the day time.

    g)Rhustox: If the fever is caused by getting wet while perspiring especially in case of sudden rain. A draft of cold breeze either in the morning jogging or in the evening when temp suddenly drops down. Body ache brought about due to above cause aching is relieved by motion. Joint pain or acute arthritis.

    h) Gentiana chiraita: A bilious fever. Body is dry , no perspiration. Very high fever. Sponging do not bring any relief.

    i)Pyrogenium: Septic fevers due to any abscess or boil or physical truma. Any injury accompanied with swelling of the surrounding area.

    j)Ferrum phos: A general biochemic drug for all cases of fevers and can be used as a supplement along side other homeo medicines. General indication is face flushed. High fever, anemic, nausea tic, anti inflammatory.
    k)pulsatilla: A fever caused due to over eating or eating oily food, bakery items with headache with nausea. It is a polychrest remedy.

    Last but not the least. Sulphur must not be forgotten if the best selected remedies do not act.

    Friends , This is my observation, I hope most of you may be benefited.

    I have not dealt here with Intermittent and Remittent fevers due to paucity of time.

    mazhariihr
    Bangalore(India)

  13. Dr.Rubina Altaf on

    Fever is not a disease,its a symptom depending upon symtom similarity we have to priscribe a medicine.

  14. mah-jabeen on

    thanks a lot for this symptom, and suggest the remidies take care

  15. irfan yousaf on

    Fever is the gift of God.its make you powerful against defence of diseases. fever just like burning engine where your germs of body is killed. i really thankfull to you increase my knowledge in this regards. thanks & take care of urself.

  16. saleem on

    veins in my neck swell,become hard and painful.Could it be due to high blood pressure or muscle weakness.what remedy do you suggest
    regards
    sleem

  17. Dr.Salimkumar on

    If the physician is doubtful in selecting a remedy ffor fever placebo is better than any other remedy and advise complete fasting for the day. Unnecessary repetitions is the main obstacle to the real cure.

    Dr.M.B.Salimkumar. Cochin
    15-7-2011

  18. maitreyee deb on

    what medicine should i give to my 8 yrs old son who is suffering from viral fever in summer season.

  19. khan on

    my stool is not good . and I have sinus and alergic problem . evere time in the month I feel fever and pain in body . I can’t eat food well . every time coughing as well as my ESR got heigh . is it all about old typhoid? please help me


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