Your immune system is responsible for fighting off bacteria, viruses and even cancer cells. However, certain triggers can cause your immune system to become confused and begin attacking itself, resulting in autoimmune disease. There are links between specific environmental, hormonal, food and bacterial triggers when developing particular autoimmune conditions. When these are identified, they can be addressed and lead to an improvement in your symptoms.
Autoimmune diseases tend to run in families and are more common in women. Additionally, if you already have an autoimmune disease, you are at higher risk to develop a second.
There are hundreds of autoimmune diseases, including psoriasis, Celiac’s disease, lupus, scleroderma, Sjogren’s syndrome, type 1 diabetes, multiple sclerosis, and rheumatoid arthritis.
Symptoms can overlap between conditions which can make diagnosis difficult. It is not uncommon for a diagnosis to take several years after seeing numerous doctors; this can be frustrating and leave you feeling hopeless. Conventional treatment usually includes immune suppressors which have multiple side effects however in some cases they are necessary. Understanding the imbalances and factors contributing to your autoimmune condition is the first step and is often overlooked.
Our Approach to Treating Autoimmune Conditions
Comprehensive Autoimmunity Testing
Autoimmunity can occur for numerous reasons. Genetics can play a role in the susceptibility of developing an autoimmune disease, however there is evidence to suggest that often the digestive system is involved. Food allergies and well as the types of bacteria in the gut (known as the microbiome) can be contributors to symptoms. Both of these factors can be tested using specialty laboratory testing. Hormonal imbalances, including the adrenals, thyroid, and sex hormones can also impact autoimmune symptoms. Each person’s case is different, however when the underlying contributing factors can be identified, they can then be addressed and help to alleviate and resolve symptoms. Balancing hormones and the gut are two strategies the Naturopathic Doctors often utilize at Onyx.