How does Malaria feel? Symptoms and Traditional Nigerian Cure.

oskilo85 By oskilo85, 20th May 2015 | Follow this author | RSS Feed
Posted in Wikinut>Health>Alternative Medicine

Malaria is a very common ailment in Nigeria. this post looks at the symptoms of the illness and alternative means of treating it.

How does Malaria feel? Symptoms and Traditional Nigerian Cure.

Malaria, a disease gotten from mosquito bite is quite rampant in Nigeria, Western Africa. Due to poor environmental care; stagnant pools of water, poor hygiene, poor protection and cynicism. The disease has been a part of the Nigerian people for ages. For them, it is not one of the diseases like cancer, aids, etc that progress brought but a particular part of their way of life. Adventurers, traders, colonists coming to the southern part of the country were killed by this seemingly innocent but deadly disease. The disease is said to have killed more people than Aids, yet 'I have malaria' is a normal statement to say in Nigeria. No one gets surprised, rather they tell you what drug they took that helped. You don't get admitted in the hospital for malaria, except you are a baby ,its one of the new hybrids or you have typhoid tagging along.

Symptoms of Malaria

When I get malaria, on the first day, it usually starts with a bitter taste on my tongue, then my temperature starts to rise, after some time, a splitting headache comes and I start to shiver all over. By evening time, my whole body is hot to touch, my eyes are pounding mortars and I would gladly exchange heads with anyone willing to bear the pain. I would curl, wrapped from head to toe with a cover cloth or blanket, shivering intermittently.
In the morning of the next day, I will feel as weak as a newborn, my body totally drained of energy. I can barely stand, won't be able to raise my head to look at anything or anyone. I would have to bathe with hot water and forced to eat, then take drugs. I would lay in bed all day, barely manage to eat little food. In the evening, I would start feeling severe back pains. To aid myself, I would place my pillow under my back and sleep face up, moaning through the night, shivering with my skin burning up.
Depending on the drugs and their efficacy, the fever would ease up after three days after which I quickly recover from the illness. I know I'm recovered when I feel hungry.

Traditional Method of Treating Malaria

In Nigeria, before the coming of the British and Portuguese, Malaria was already being treated in a traditional manner. This home made remedy, which is widely touted for its efficacy includes the imbibing of the steam through the mouth, nose and skin, bathing and ingestion of the brew from a highly heated mixture of various leaves and bark of trees.
These leaves and bark noted for their use in the treatment of ailments include; the leaves and bark of the mango tree (Mangifera indica), the leaves and bark of the Dongoyaro or Neem tree (Azadirchata indica), the leaves of the papaya or pawpaw (locally called)plant (carica papaya), the leaves of the plantain tree (Musa Paradisiaca), leaves of lemon grass (Cymbopogon Citratus), leaves of the orange tree (Citrus Sinensis), leaves of the Scent leaf(Ocimum Gratissimum), lime tree (Citrus Aurantifolla)

Method of Application

The barks and leaves are properly washed to remove the sand and dirts attached to them. A big steel pot is filled with water and put on fire. The washed bark and leaves are poured into the water and left to boil. When it is boiling hot and the leaves and barks are properly boiled, it is put down.

The patient is placed before the pot and made to sit on a stool. He or she sits down before the pot and is covered with heavy cloth so the heat is not allowed to escape. The mixture is continually stirred until the patient starts sweating.

The patient uses the water to bathe and drink ( a portion is removed from the pot before the steaming starts). This process is done until the fever breaks.


This method of treatment is widely used by families in Nigeria, especially those that cannot afford the normal tablets and capsules manufactured by pharmaceutical companies.

Photo Credits (papaya tree) (malaria patient)



Alternative Medecine, Health, Herbs, Malaria, Mosquito, Nigeria

Meet the author

author avatar oskilo85
I am an amateur poet, writer, amateur blogger, social critic, teacher and book junkie. My writings are focused on literature, social issues, entertainment and politics

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author avatar Sivaramakrishnan A
9th Jun 2015 (#)

Certain parts of Asia too have this disease - tough to be free completely - siva

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author avatar oskilo85
10th Jun 2015 (#)

yeah this is true. Its quite difficult to get rid of. especially with pools of water, dense forests and low levels of hygiene in such environments

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