why do we sweat when we are sick

Med student here. Sweating is what happens towards the end of a fever. I m going to try to explain the science behind what a fever is. Warning - it s not exactly ELI5, but there s no other way, really. Your body temperature is controlled by a part of your brain called the hypothalamus. Normally, the hypothalamus keeps your body temperature set at a specific temperature like a thermostat. There are molecules that get produced during inflammation and illness called prostaglandins and cytokines. They go to the hypothalamus and they tell the hypothalamus to raise the set temperature, so they raise the thermostat temperature. When the thermostat temperature gets raised in your body to 101 degrees, but the actual temperature of your body hasn t caught up yet (98. 6 degrees), you feel cold, and start to shiver, right? This is because your body s set point has increased but your actual temperature is lower than the set point, so your body thinks its too cold.


After a while, the prostaglandins stop working, and the hypothalamus can bring the set point temperature back down to the regular 98. 6 degrees. At this point, you feel too hot and start to sweat because the actual temperature of your body was brought up to 101 degrees earlier to meet the previous increase in set temperature, but now the set temperature is lower, and your body is higher. You sweat it out to help cool your body off to bring it back down to the regular set temperature point. I never learned if it actually helps speed up the recovery process of an illness. It s just a normal phase that happens during a fever. Fever is actually supposed to be good IF IT S NOT TOO HIGH OF A FEVER. Fevers that are 105 degrees fahrenheit and higher can cause brain/organ damage, but if it s 100-102, fevers supposedly raise the body temperature so that viruses/bacteria can t survive at the higher body temperature.


Unfortunately, people feel pretty miserable with fevers so they take fever reducer medication in order to keep working throughout the day, etc. You may want to ask for a better answer.
Do you remember the last time you got? It may have started out as an upset stomach or a sore throat with a cough. Eventually, though, you may have started to feel very tired and extremely warm. Placing your hand on your forehead revealed what you suspected: a sweaty forehead that felt much warmer than normal. What are we talking about? A fever, of course! A fever is a sure that your body is fighting something and likely needs some medicine. Human beings have a normal body of about 98. 6j F. Some people may have a normal body slightly above or below this. Your may also vary naturally throughout the day, running a little cooler in the morning and a little warmer in the evening. For the most part, though, an upward from 98. 6j F means you have a fever.


The body's is by a part of the brain called the. Located in the center of the brain, the is like the body's. It keeps track of changes to your body and sends messages to the different parts of the body to keep it at the proper. So how do fevers occur? They're most often caused by the invasion of germs, such as. Germs can cause certain chemicals to enter your, making you. When the detects these chemicals in your blood, it communicates with the rest of your body to set your internal higher. For example, rather than the normal 98. 6j F, your might tell your body to raise its to 102j F. Although it's no fun to have a fever, raising your body's helps to fight the germs making you by making your body a less comfortable place for them to be. A fever also lets you know you have an infection that needs to be treated. When you get a fever, you often shiver a bit at first. is actually one of the ways your body uses to create more to get your body to the new, higher setting directed by the.


Once your body gets to its new, you'll feel plenty warm. As soon as your body is able to fight the off, usually with the help of some medicine, your will reset your body's back to 98. 6j F. You will likely begin to more as your body uses the process of to help cool you down to the correct. Most fevers resolve themselves on their own. However, fevers in very young infants can be dangerous. In addition, extremely high fevers of 104j F or higher in children might also contacting a doctor. For most regular fevers, over-the-counter like acetaminophen and ibuprofen will help fight a fever. If you have a fever, you'll also want to drink lots of fluids. As your body heats up with a fever, it can easily become, so be sure to include plenty of fluids along with some extra rest.

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