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Ask a Silly Question

May 11, 1999

Q. When you have a fever, your temperature goes up, right? Then why do you get chills?

A. Your body involuntarily shakes to generate the energy it takes to raise your temperature, said Washington County Health Officer Dr. Robert Parker.

The extra heat is your body's way of trying to kill the organism that's making you sick, although sometimes the only thing it does is make you feel bad, Parker said.

Your body responds in a similar way to the cold. When you go outside on a cold day, your body shivers to generate the heat needed to keep warm, he said.

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