Autoimmune Diseases

Listen to Dr. Risk's Radio Show on Autoimmune Diseases.

What is the Immune System?

The immune system is our body’s first defense against external invaders. When we are exposed to an infection like a bacterial infection or virus, the first thing our body does is send out white blood cells or “soldiers” to fight off the unwanted visitor. In a healthy body, this is a normal reaction and responsible for the annoying sore throat, swollen lymph nodes, sniffles, sneezing, and fever that accompany a cold or flu. The immune system is a network of cells, tissues, and organs that work together to protect the body against these invaders.

What is an Autoimmune Disease?

An autoimmune disease is defined by the American Academy of Allergy Asthma & Immunology as “an illness that causes the immune system to produce antibodies that attack normal body tissues."1  In other words, your body is attacking itself or a part of itself because it sees it as a foreign entity or threat. Why? We don’t know. Chronic pain from inflammation is one of our body’s responses to this attack, which is why it is so prevalent as a symptom in many autoimmune diseases.

Some of the most commonly known autoimmune diseases are:

  • Rheumatoid arthritis
  • Lupus
  • Lyme disease
  • ALS
  • MS
  • Celiac disease
  • Pernicious anemia
  • Vitiligo
  • Scleroderma
  • Psoriasis
  • Crohn’s disease
  • Hashimoto’s Thyroiditis
  • Sjögren’s syndrome
  • Type 1 diabetes

How Does an Autoimmune Disease Start?

At the onset of an autoimmune disease, symptoms are usually:

  • Fatigue
  • Achy muscles
  • Swelling and redness
  • Low-grade fever
  • Trouble concentrating
  • Numbness and tingling in the hands and feet
  • Hair loss
  • Skin rashes

Depending on the disease, this can progress with common symptoms of the disease, as well as symptoms unique to the individual. Pain is often a main component for sufferers. 

How Are Autoimmune Diseases Treated?

At Ananta Health, we first take an assessment of the patients’ health history, including family history and perform a BioScan SRT assessment. We often find that autoimmune diseases are accompanied by foreign invaders, like the spirochete bacterium causing Lyme disease and its associated infections, heavy metal toxicity, mold toxicity, candida albicans, parasites, viruses, multiple chemical sensitives (MCS) and anything else affecting the patient.

At Ananta Health, our course of treatment is used to address anything foreign in the body, while regulating the immune system. We are careful to use any Chinese herbs and supplements that don’t over stimulate the immune system or work against any medication. Aside from herbs and supplements, dietary and lifestyle changes are often necessary, as well as stress management.

As the patient starts to feel better and the underlying cause is treated, eventually the patient can move to management or maintenance care. With autoimmune diseases, since there is no cure, it is important to continually monitor the immune system and continue to implement any lifestyle changes.

Can Acupuncture Help Treat Autoimmune Diseases?

Acupuncture can help treat autoimmune diseases by encouraging the body to regulate the immune system and managing symptoms such as fatigue, pain, inflammation and sleep, among others.


 

1 © 2022 American Academy of Allergy, Asthma & Immunology. Autoimmune Disease Defined. Retrieved on September 22nd, 2022 from https://www.aaaai.org/Tools-for-the-Public/Allergy,-Asthma-Immunology-Glossary/Autoimmune-Disease-Defined.