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Acupuncture for Immune System Function
Posted October 04, 2016 by Hailin Wu, OM Clinical / Faculty Supervisor, Program Director & filed under Alternative Medicine, Acupuncture and Massage College
Our immune system is our body’s security detail. Our cells, tissues and organs that comprise our immune system help repel foreign invaders like bacteria, parasites, viruses and other microbes that can cause infections. These can range from everyday annoyances like mild seasonal allergies to serious illnesses like bronchitis or pneumonia.
Acupuncture therapy can treat a wide range of health conditions by stimulating and balancing the immune system. Acupuncture can strengthen a weakened immune system by increasing red and white cell counts and T-cell counts.
The causes and effects of a weakened immune system
Stress, lack of sleep, poor nutrition and other common conditions can contribute to a weakened immune system, which can make you vulnerable to infections.
A compromised or dysfunctional immune system is a major component of most chronic diseases. Once compromised, a weak immune system results in frequent colds, allergies, and reoccurring infections.
Immunity related disorders include:
- Common colds
- Chronic fatigue
- Autoimmune disease
- Immune deficiency syndrome
Treating symptoms, not causes
Most allopathic health care is directed toward relieving symptoms rather than treating the underlying cause of the disease. Conventional treatments used in traditional Western medicine for overactive immune system disorders, such as allergies and autoimmune diseases like arthritis, often include treatments aimed at suppressing the immune system through medication. Although that method is useful for limiting symptoms and managing pain, it does not result in a cure. Side effects and other adverse symptoms may develop after long-term use of these suppressive drugs.
Restoring the immune function
So how does someone suffering from an immune disorder find relief? Acupuncture can regulate immune function and treat the underlying cause of the disease. By helping in reducing symptoms, speeding up the healing of infection and normalizing the body’s immune response. It works by stimulating specific portions of the autonomic nervous system through selected acupoints. These in turn cause responses in the immune system. Acupuncture can cause a rise in levels of interferon, one of the immune system’s messenger hormones. Regular acupuncture therapy can be effective in treating asthma, allergies, rheumatoid arthritis, lupus, colds and viral infections.
For information about AMC’s Oriental Medicine and Massage Therapy programs you can email our admissions department.
Moira’s July Newsletter
This month’s newsletter features acupuncture for athletes. Check it out.