Everyone has had common colds and fevers at some point in their life. The fact that they are the most unwanted guests against whom our bodies do not resist casts doubt on everything we know. We are not immune to them. Have you ever wondered why this is so?
Well, here are the reasons:
Fever usually follows a cold as a defence mechanism against viruses and bacteria.
- Common Colds: Scientists have discovered that the immune response to cold viruses attacks the inside of the virus-cell rather than the envelope, which the virus utilises to establish itself in the patient’s mucosal tissue. Anyone suffering from a cold generates antibodies against the wrong component of the virus, and their immune system fails to defend them. This could explain why humans do not develop immunity to colds as they do to other infectious diseases like measles. When a person gets a cold, the antibodies attack the wrong component of the virus again.
- Fevers: It is triggered by your body in an attempt to fight the virus or bacteria that caused the infection. Most bacteria and viruses thrive when your body temperature is average. However, if you have a fever, they have a harder time surviving since a greater body temperature speeds up how cells perform, including those that fight illness. They can respond to invading bacteria more quickly. Fever also boosts your immune system, making bacteria and viruses less likely to grow in your body.
Note: Some people never get a fever or the common cold. Because their body has built good immunity against common viruses and bacteria, they no longer come into touch with as many bacteria as they did initially.
Keeping your heart, brain, bones, and other organs healthy is also beneficial to your immune system:
- Stay active.
- Work to maintain a healthy weight.
- Do not smoke.
- If you drink alcohol, limit your intake to one drink per day for women and two drinks per day for men.
- Consume healthy foods.
Remember: Stress and a lack of sleep can raise your chances of catching a cold. Colds can be avoided by practising basic hygiene, eating well, sleeping well, and decreasing stress. And soon, a fever will follow.