Asthma and Allergies

The Five Most Dangerous Words:

“Maybe it will go away!”

Nearly 40 million Americans—that’s 25% of the total population—suffer from asthma and other allergies. In an asthma attack, children and adults respond similarly, with severe congestion, swelling, and other allergic type reactions in response to various irritants. As the reaction progresses, breathing becomes more difficult and in some cases life-threatening. The bronchioles swell with mucous and go into spasm. This closes the airways and causes the asthmatic to wheeze and gasp for air. The problem? Although the traditional methods for controlling asthma and allergies are numerous, sickness and death rising from asthma appear to be increasing. As stated in The New England Journal of Medicine in February of 1992, this trend is at least partially due to side effects from regular use of inhaled medications.

Chiropractic is the art of removing nervous system interference, so that the body has the chance to function normally.

Your initial exposure to chiropractic usually elicits the question of what can chiropractic do for a particular condition or disease. The objective of chiropractic is not to treat or cure diseases of any kind. Chiropractic concerns itself with the removal of interference in your nerve system. A body free of interference has a better chance of healing itself. That is the principle, upon which the chiropractor bases their practice. The recognition that within each living organism is the ability to heal itself.

Chiropractic Care

Although chiropractic is not a treatment for allergies, it does, by permitting the nervous system to function with less stress, permit the immune system to function more effectively.

According to some chiropractors, allergies are simply a hypersensitive immune system responding to normal antigens in the environment. The nervous system seems to be the controlling factor for the immune system. Chiropractic frees up the nerves so that they are not irritated and hypersensitive to stimuli.

Asthma and Allergies: A Closer Look

A New Approach.

In a recent study, children with asthma showed an overall improvement in the lung capacity after only 15 chiropractic adjustments. Other findings documenting abnormal spinal mechanics associated with asthma were performed by the famous osteopathic researcher Alan Stoddard. Stoddard stated that many diseases are due to mechanical lesions (vertebral subluxations). There is ample research documenting the intimate connection between the spinal column, the nervous system, and the respiratory system. Vertebral subluxations in the neck and upper back can produce associated muscle spasms, which cause a restriction and stasis of the lymphatic drainage from the head and neck. As a result, the body is unable to wash out the bacteria , debris, and foreign material to which it is exposed. As this vital process is slowed, the phagocytic activity within the lymphatic chain (drainage of waste, bacteria, etc.) is interrupted, and invasion of the offending bacteria multiplies. Chiropractic adjustments in many cases will produce immediate relaxation of the neck musculature responsible for obstructing the lymphatic (neck) drainage. These adjustments improve respiratory function by restoring normal nerve function, which in turn may result in symptomatic improvement in bronchitis and asthma. In several studies researchers found spinal adjustments to induce respiratory function and chest mobility superior to that produced through conventional medical methods. Various symptoms of abnormal respiratory function may improve clinically with chiropractic adjustments.

Nerve Control.

The primary muscle for breathing is the diaphragm. It is actually composed of two muscles, the left and right hemidiaphragms, which separate the chest and abdominal cavities. The phrenic nerve (C3, C4, C5 – neck nerves) powers the diaphragm. If the nerve supply is interfered with, such as in a subluxation in the neck, the diaphragm weakens and breathing becomes impaired. Additional muscles, such as the sternocleidomastoid, trapezius, scalene, and pectorals, operate to assist the diaphragm during a period of increased breathing effort, such as during exercise or severe respiratory illness. All of these muscles must have nerve supply to work. Subluxations interfering with normal nerve supply can cause muscular imbalances leading to a weaker respiratory tract. Restoring nerve supply by correcting vertebral subluxations not only improves muscle tone, but actually aids in overall body function, especially in the immune response.

Chiropractic is safe and natural.

The chiropractic approach to health care is natural. It does not try to stimulate or inhibit normal body function. Instead, the chiropractor addresses the important role of the nervous system in the healing process. The results can be traumatic, as in a 1989 Danish study of 115 families with children ages 0 to 7 years suffering from asthma, diabetes, and epilepsy. One third of the children underwent chiropractic adjustments, after which 93 percent of the parents surveyed reported improvement in their child’s asthma condition. Many childhood illnesses may be manifested in the child and adult due to abnormal body function caused by subluxations. In light of this, your chiropractor may be the best doctor to help your child improve his/her health.

Keeping You, You

Your immune system is always working to keep you, 100% you. And that means 100% natural, organic, unadulterated you. If there’s anything in you that isn’t supposed to be there, the immune system will recognize it and try to destroy or remove it. And that means anything: splinters, dust, pollen, bacteria, viruses, chemicals, pollutants, drugs, tumors, abnormal growths, and even artificial hearts and other donor organs. (There are, however, some substances like metal and plastic that don’t trigger an immune reaction.)

A healthy immune system means high resistance to disease and infection, an enhanced ability to deal with environmental stresses, and greater health and well-being. Without a healthy immune system you would die in a short time, which is what happens to many people who contract AIDS (HlV Disease).

The immune system is one of the most complicated, sensitive, and mysterious systems in the body. It is influenced by our neurological and hormonal systems, by our diet, and even by emotional and mental stress. Science’s understanding it is in its infancy, yet many believe it holds the ultimate key to life and health.

Immunological Diseases

Thus we can see that if the immune system were to malfunction we could be in very serious trouble. An immunological disease may manifest itself when the immune system fails to recognize and remove abnormal cells, germs, or other substances; overreacts to foreign substances; attacks the body it is supposed to defend; or even attacks itself!

Examples

Some examples of immune system disorders are cancer (the tumor isn’t recognized as something that needs to be destroyed); rheumatoid arthritis (the immune system attacks the joints); AIDS (the immune system is severely depressed); anaphylaxis (a powerful overreaction to certain substances – for example, bee stings, penicillin, drugs, or even certain foods); and obscure diseases such as lupus erythematosus, myasthenia gravis, scleroderma, pernicious anemia, and chronic thyroiditis.) The most common disorder of the immune system is one that is a lot less frightening: the allergy.

Allergens and Allergies

Substances that cause an allergic reaction are called allergens. An allergic reaction (sensitivity) occurs when the immune system overreacts to an allergen and produces too many neutralizing chemicals (especially histamines) to counteract it. Some examples of allergens are dust; pollen; medicines; dog or cat dander; milk; soaps; detergents and other kitchen chemicals; and even foods like strawberries or chocolate (heaven forbid!).

A common example of an allergy is hayfever. Although most people who breathe ragweed pollen aren’t bothered by the microscopic bits of plants that constitute pollen, some have an immune system that overreacts to it. The runny eyes, irritated mucus membranes, redness, pounding in the head, fullness in the sinuses – are produced by the neutralizing chemicals.

What Causes Allergies?

The cause of allergies and immune system disease has not been conclusively determined. However, there are those who attribute the proliferation of allergies and other immune system diseases to the mass vaccination campaigns of the past few decades. “Vaccination lays the foundation for auto immune diseases and other disorders of the immune system such as rheumatoid arthritis, rheumatic fever, lupus erythematosus, scleroderma. ..IT is reasonable to assume that our contemporary ‘epidemic’ of allergies has at least some of its roots in the practice of vaccination.”

Protect Your Child From Asthma

Today, 4.8 million children and adolescents in the United States suffer from asthma (Vital and Health Statistics 1995; 10 (193)). A whopping 5.8% of children under the age of five have the disease, reflecting a 160% jump in cases since 1980. And, according to the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, more than 10 million missed school days per year are asthma related.

Your Immune System

The Orthodox Medical Approach to Allergy Treatment

Orthodox medicine has no cure for allergies, only treatment, and, according to Robert Mendelsohn, M.D you can depend on most doctors to largely ignore the cause and instead rush madly to treatment. Unfortunately, the treatment is often worse than the disease, especially since the relatively safe folk-measures of yesteryear have been replaced by the sophisticated, dangerous drugs of modern medicine.

Antihistamines

Overreaction to allergens causes the body to release the chemical histamine (as well as other chemicals) that cause inflammation and other symptoms, and antihistamines are often prescribed to counter these effects. In most cases the antihistamines dry up the nasal passages and decrease the discomfort from itching, but do not correct the immune system overreaction. Further, antihistamines should not be used with alcohol, sedatives, or tranquilizers.

Side Effects

Antihistamines, steroid hormones, and long-term desensitization all carry significant negative side effects. Further, the use of steroids can suppress the adrenal gland, and steroid nasal sprays have been found to be destructive of the cilia in the nose and other parts of the upper respiratory tract. Finally, no one knows the long-term risks of taking these drugs.

Allergy Shots

Regarding allergy shots (desensitization), Dr. Mendelsohn states, “Although millions of patients have received the shots over the past 60 years, there are no, good, long-term studies to determine possible neurological or other consequences of this treatment.”

Nevertheless, one medical study did report that chronic injections of foreign proteins might produce negative long-term consequences and cited animal study evidence of abnormal blood conditions. Also mentioned were “a striking incidence of positive ‘rheumatoid factors’ in allergic children receiving shots. ” The sad fact is that long-term dangers of desensitization injections have not been fully studied.

Breast feeding

Clinical studies have shown that breast fed babies have fewer allergy problems than formula-fed babies. Breast milk includes colostrum, a substance which helps strengthen the baby’s immune system. Non-breast fed babies have a higher incidence of more severe infections.

The Chiropractic Approach

Although chiropractic is not a treatment for diseases, allergies included, it does, by permitting the nervous system to function with less stress, permit the immune system to function more effectively – and this is something all allergy sufferers need. Many studies have revealed the effect of a healthy nervous system on immune system health.

Chiropractic Immunology

Ronald Pero, Ph.D., chief of cancer prevention research at New York’s Preventive Medicine Institute and professor of medicine at New York University, measured the immune systems of people under chiropractic care as compared to those in the general population and those with cancer and other serious diseases. In his initial three-year study of 107 individuals who had been under chiropractic care for five years or more, the chiropractic patients were found to have a 200% greater immune competence than people who had not received chiropractic care, and 400% greater immune competence than people with cancer and other serious diseases! The superiority of those under chiropractic care did not diminish with age!

“When applied in a clinical framework, I have never seen a group other than this chiropractic group to experience a 200% increase over the normal patients. This is why it is so dramatically important. We have never seen such a positive improvement in a group.

Conclusion

Allergies can make people’s lives miserable. The standard medical approach may give short-term relief but is controversial and dangerous, and its long-term effects are untested. Common sense tells us to explore the safest, most natural means of dealing with problems before resorting to more extreme measures. A two-fold approach to allergies is often recommended: first, the avoidance of those substances that cause severe reactions and, second, correction of the basic cause – a malfunctioning immune system. As one authority states: ” A healthy body is capable of neutralizing these
toxic substances and a body which has malfunctioning defense
mechanisms cannot. The emphasis on allergies must be on building
a healthy body, not on trying to use evasive tactics by eliminating
all the allergens.”