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What You Should Know About Fever and Acetaminophen Use

Many parents find it difficult to refrain from giving their children Tylenol (acetaminophen) or some other type of children’s over-the-counter analgesic medication when the see their child acutely ill. Originally based on naturopathic philosophy, but further confirmed from clinical observation, a child's overall health fares better when these types of medications are not used.

Acetaminophen blocks the liver’s critical job of sorting and filtering toxins when a person is acutely ill. While it may alleviate the anxiety of the parent since they think “how can I just sit and let my child suffer”, it actually only prolongs the recovery time since this type of elimination is really the primary effect of acute ‘infections’. Furthermore, when children are given acetominophen repeatedly, illness after illness, year after year, and if the terrain is right and the diathesis predisposes them, they can develop even a more serious illness. Again, clinical observation and history shows us that suppression of symptoms is not in the patient’s best interest.

What we consider to be in the patient’s best interest is to enable them to eliminate completely, effectively and without distress. As fever is a natural and primary immune response of the body, it should be supported and not feared. Only toxic fevers are at risk for going above 105 degrees and this occurs only in patients who are severely dys-regulated. Refer to the fever chart to gain a better understanding of which fever temperatures are most effective.

Finally, in response to the anxious patient who cannot bear to watch their child suffer, remember that there are many single homeopathic remedies that aid in the specific symptoms a child may suffer. See Dr. Erin’s summary of Gérard Guéniot’s best homeopathic selections for fever.

Remember, using natural medicine is not inaction! You are doing more for your child than ever!

FEVER CHART

Centigrade Fahrenheit EFFECT of TEMPERATURE Comments
37.5-38.5 99.5-101.3 Favors Bacterial Growth Very inefficient fever, Poor immunity
38.5-39.5 101.3-103.1 Favors Bacterial Growth; Bacteriostatic (stops bacteria but does not kill he bacteria) Minimally effective, a sign of progress in immune function from a lower grade fever.
39.5-40.5 103.1-104.9 Bateriolytic (knocks out and kills the bacteria) IDEAL FEVER TEMPERATURE
40.5 and up 104.9 and up “Toxic fever” VERY unusual Cytolytic (causes cellular death) FEVERS RARELY go above 41.5C/105F. Cool in lukewarm water or with damp, cool cloth if Temp exceeds 41.5 C/104.9F.