Is Stress causing Auto Immune Disease ?
Does immense physical or mental stress lead to Auto Immune Disease. Lets understand the two broad types of sources of stress, Physical and Mental.
Causes of Physical Stress:
- Deficiencies of vitamins, protein, antioxidants etc
- Lack of sleep.
- Irregular meal timings.
- Recurrent acute infections.
- Chronic illness untreated or long history of allopathic medication.
Cause of Mental Stress:
- Emotional trauma.
- Extreme behavioral pattern.
- Past events of life.
- Childhoods emotional disturbance.
- Or any mental illness.
Our human body responds in one particular pattern, it activates its defense mechanism.
Stress is identified by part of our brain called hypothalamus. On detection of stress the signals are sent to pituitary gland in brain as well as adrenal gland situated on kidney.
These glands in response to stimulation produce cortisol and adrenaline hormones also called as fight or flight harmone.
So now the real defensive mechanism starts
These hormones circulate in blood and inform all the vital organs to get ready for fight or flight.
In the process of preparation, all vital organs reduces its self blood supply. This is almost dropped to 50% so as to supply maximum blood to upper and lower limbs. The primary reason being that its believed that these parts will facilitate fight and flight mechanism.
(For our ancestors the only stress was life threatening situation like encountering wild animals. So threat to life was stress. Death was stress and fight or flight response use to trigger. )
Todays time we don't have actual survival problem but we have so many self created stress.
This mechanism is believed to be our defensive mechanism. At the same time if it occurs multiple times in a day than our vital parts are exposed to function under less blood supply. Multiple times low supply of oxygen ultimately inflammation of cells, tissues or organ.
This inflammation of body cells than triggers auto immune mechanism. Our defense system considers this inflammation as foreign body invasion and to its response will attack same cells , tissues or organ.
So its important to avoid unnecessary stress. In unavoidable situation do have exercise , sports or hobbies always as part of your routine life so you get destressed.
During the physical activities like any form of exercise , sports or hobbies our body experiences muscle contractions which in return produces serotonin as happy harmone and this neutralises the bad effects of stress harmones, avoiding the inflammatory action of stress harmone and ultimately stops any auto.immune mechanism activity in our body.
Common auto immune diseases that we encounter in our clinical practice :
- Alopecia areata
- Rheumatoid arthritis
- Lichen planus
....and list goes on.
Management of auto immune disease will include counselling for stress management, lifestyle changes like diet and exercise, with very good scope of homeopathic medicines.
Majority of autoimmune case generally start allopathy as first line of treatment. This generally comprises of steroids and immuno-suppressants which helps manage advanced stages of such ailments. But these come with loads of side effects.
If homeopathy is started as first line of treatment, scope of treatment is very positive. Otherwise even if patient is on allopathic medication simultaneously starting with homeopathic medicines will improve the prognosis of disease.