What Is Inflammation?
Inflammation is when part of the body reacts to injury or infection by turning red, swollen, hot and often painful.
It is an immune response which indicates that the body is fighting something harmful and trying to heal itself. So it may not feel good- but it shows your immune system is doing its job and protecting your body!
Why Do We Develop Inflammation?
The body’s white blood cells produce chemicals which tell other cells to cause inflammation, protecting us from infection from foreign organisms.
Chemicals produced cause the narrow blood vessels in the tissue to expand so more blood can reach the affected area, and this is what causes the redness and hotness. These chemicals also irritate the nerves, so that pain signals are sent to the brain.
The blood vessels become more permeable, allowing more defense cells to enter along with fluid which causes swelling.
What Is The Best Treatment For Inflammation?
For most of us, the natural reaction when we injure ourselves is to try to reduce the inflammation by applying ice and taking anti-inflammatory pills.
But actually, in many cases, inflammation is a good thing- without it our bodies would never heal. Acute inflammation is a sign of a healthy body reacting to an injury or infection in a normal way- helping your body to heal quickly- so the best thing to do is nothing- just let it run its course.
However, if the inflammation continues for too long, it can become a problem that needs medical attention. Chronic inflammation is when the immune system overreacts and goes after healthy body parts- causing your system to be flooded with inflammation. This can lead to conditions such as arthritis, asthma, tuberculosis, and ulcerative colitis.
Acute inflammation is usually short-lived, so if you have been suffering with inflammation for more than a few days, you may need to seek medical care.