Inflammation has a bad rap–in the media, in the medical community and in the pharmaceutical industry.
For years, we’ve been told that all inflammation is bad. Period.
As such, the medical establishment has placed a very large emphasis on reducing inflammation and has employed a liberal use of anti-inflammatory drugs (typically NSAIDs like ibuprofen and naproxen, or steroids). And while chronic, low-level inflammation is at least partially responsible for a whole host of diseases and conditions – not all inflammation is bad.
We know that inhibiting your body’s natural inflammatory response slows the healing process by preventing repair cells from reaching your injury. What’s more – NSAIDs not only block your natural healing mechanisms, they may even cause further injury by masking pain.
So, if not all inflammation is bad, what are the benefits of inflammation?
Benefits of Inflammation in The Body
To understand the beneficial effects of inflammation, you first need to understand what inflammation is and why it happens.
From “Understanding Inflammation” by Michael Anft in the Johns Hopkins Health Review:
“Inflammation is a vital part of the human immune system. When harmful bacteria or viruses enter your body, when you scrape or twist your knee, the body’s defense system kicks into high gear. Chemicals ramp up the body to fight, bathing the damaged area with blood, fluid, and proteins; creating swelling and heat to protect and repair damaged tissue; and setting the stage for healing.
“Sentinel cells first alert the immune system to the presence of invaders. Another set of cells releases chemicals that signal the capillaries to leak blood plasma, which surrounds and slows down trespassers. Another group of sentinels, called macrophages, releases cytokines, which are specialized germ fighters. Immunizing B- and T-cells join in, destroying both the pathogens and the tissues they have damaged. Finally, a last wave of cytokines is released to end the job and signal the immune system that its work is done. Its mission completed, the immune system calls off its dogs.”
In other words, inflammation is a direct result of your body’s natural healing mechanisms. The swelling you experience means that your body has sent all of the necessary stem cells, blood, plasma, fluid and proteins to the area to fight the invading injury and begin the healing process from within.
This type of inflammation is acute and temporary. It gets in, does its job, and gets out. Suppressing this natural healing process with NAIDs only blocks the beneficial effects of inflammation and inhibits your body’s automatic immune response.
Positive Inflammation for Healing Naturally
As we age or suffer from injury, our bodies don’t always have enough stem cells in the right areas to trigger a natural healing response. When this happens, instead of our bodies flooding the injured or damaged areas with the necessary healing agents, we receive either a chronic low-level inflammatory response or none at all.
That is where orthobiologics treatments come into play. Orthobiologics are a customized spectrum of concentrated cells – including stem cells and platelet rich plasma – that are injected into injured areas. These treatments supercharge your body’s innate healing process by provoking a positive inflammatory response that increases the number of repair cells around your injury.
Moral of the story? Yes, chronic, low-level inflammation is bad.
But the natural healing benefits of inflammation should no longer be swept under the rug. It’s beyond time to broaden our views on inflammation: Acute, temporary inflammation is good. It’s how your body heals itself – naturally.
If you’re suffering from constant pain and ready to find long-term healing, call the Albano Clinic today at 385-220-9009. We want to help you move better, feel better and live better – pain free.