When our bodies aren’t feeling the best, inflammation can sometimes be a part of the problem. There are a number of reasons why you may experience inflammation in your body and there are a number of different causes for such inflammation. Here we look at some of the main causes of inflammation and what inflammation really is.
What is inflammation?
Inflammation occurs in the body when you experience an injury and blood vessels expand to get more blood to the area. This is generally why you may experience redness and heat from the area that is inflamed. You may experience pressure and damage during everyday life. It’s common to get a minor injury here and there. Normally your body will be able to repair any damage on its own. If the injury is quite minor you will not notice or see any symptoms of inflammation while your body repairs itself.
Symptoms of inflammation
There are five common signs or symptoms to show you that you may be experiencing minor inflammation. These symptoms are swelling, heat, redness, pain and generally having difficulty moving the area of the body. Depending on the severity of your inflammation, it could be a minor issue and will heal on its own. Unfortunately, though, you may experience some more damaging inflammation that is widespread and more painful. This is when you may require treatment and proper diagnosis from your doctor.
Causes of inflammation
If you have minor inflammation, it can result from a number of reasons such as an injury, an infection of some kind or even exposure to certain substances like dust or a bee sting. Inflammation that is acute can appear within hours or days but that depends on what the cause is. Some infections and factors that can lead to acute inflammation include a sore throat from a cold or flu, physical trauma, acute bronchitis and even an ingrown toenail.
What about chronic inflammation?
Chronic inflammation usually occurs for a number of different reasons such as if a person has a sensitivity to certain substances such as an allergy. Someone who has long-term exposure to an irritant may also experience chronic inflammation. Those who also suffer from autoimmune diseases may also have chronic inflammation due to their disorder. There are also a number of other factors that can increase the risk of inflammation such as obesity, stress, whether or not you are a smoker, sleeping problems and older age. Doctors may also associate certain health conditions with inflammation and these include periodontitis, tuberculosis, sinusitis, Crohn’s disease and asthma along with a number of other diseases not included here.
Common treatments for inflammation
In a lot of cases, there is no need to treat any minor inflammation as the body can heal itself. However, not treating inflammation that requires treatment can cause severe symptoms. As an example, if you are experiencing inflammation due to an allergic reaction, it’s essential to get treatment as this reaction may cause severe symptoms depending on the person. For other minor causes, there are a number of different things that you can try to relieve your inflammation.
Nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs
While nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs don’t remove the cause of the information, they can help to relieve fever, pain, swelling and any other symptoms you may be experiencing. Examples include ibuprofen and aspirin. A lot of these options are available over the counter at your local chemist but it’s always best to have a chat with the chemist or your doctor if you are unsure if you are making the right choice for you. These drugs are only used on a short-term basis unless advised by a doctor.
Natural pain relief
There are a few different options on the market available today for natural options when helping to reduce any inflammation you are experiencing. There are a number of different sprays and rubs available that can be applied directly to problem areas, muscles and joints. Liniment sprays and creams are often selected over other options because the active ingredients are applied directly to the inflammation. A liniment spray such as Zen joint and muscle pain relief uses traditional Chinese medicine to help reduce pain, improve circulation and healing to specific areas as well as reduce local inflammation to joints and muscles.
If you are unsure of the best way to treat inflammation or the pain you are experiencing, it is always best to have a chat with your doctor. Depending on the pain you are experiencing, you may be required to undergo further testing to determine the best treatment option for you.