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What is Inflammation?

Inflammation is part of the defense mechanism of the body, and plays a part in the healing process.


If the body is sensing an intruder, a biological reaction is initiated to try to eliminate it.


Yet in certain illnesses, such as arthritis, the protection mechanism for your body — the immune system — causes inflammation because there are no threats to fend off. In these autoimmune diseases, your immune system acts as if regular tissues are infected or somehow unusual, causing damage.

Types of Inflammation

Inflammation can be either short (Acute) or long (Chronic); In hours or days, acute inflammation disappears. Chronic inflammation, even after the first trigger is gone, may last months or years. Chronic inflammatory disorders include:

  • Diabetes

  • Asthma

  • Alzheimer’s disease

  • Cancer

  • Heart disease

  • Allergies

  • Cardiovascular disease

What Are the Symptoms of Inflammation?

Symptoms of inflammation include:

  • Joint pain

  • Stiffness in the joint

  • A joint which is not working as well as it should

  • Redness

  • A swollen joint that may be warm to the touch

Often, you’ll have only a few of these symptoms.

Inflammation may also cause flu-like symptoms including:

  • Headaches

  • Loss of appetite

  • Muscle stiffness

  • Fever

  • Chills

  • Fatigue/loss of energy

Causes:

Inflammation occurs when an immune response is caused by a physical cause. Inflammation doesn't automatically mean an infection is present, but an infection may cause inflammation.


Home Treatments

Several strategies to relieve long-term inflammation include:

  • Stop Smoking

  • Restrict your alcohol consumption.

  • Keep a healthy weight.

  • Exercise Regularly

  • Try supplements such as omega-3 fatty acids. Additionally, magnesium and vitamins B6, C, D and E have some anti-inflammatory effects. Consult your doctor before you start any supplements.

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