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How Does Inflammation Affect the Body?

woman discusses inflammation with doctor

You are probably familiar with inflammation as it relates to bodily injury.  When you break a bone or strain a muscle, your body reacts by becoming inflamed in the injured area to increase blood flow and promote healing.  Your body may also respond with inflammation to infections and toxins that are less visible than injuries, but equally in need of healing. When inflammation lasts significantly longer than what is considered normal for an injury or infection, it may be a sign of chronic inflammation.  Inflammation that persists has been linked to tissue and organ damage, as well as several serious health conditions including asthma and cancer. While acute inflammation tends to have more obvious symptoms, chronic inflammation may present in more subtle ways, and therefore be difficult to diagnose.  These symptoms might include fatigue, rashes, stomach aches, and chest pain. Because the body’s inflammatory response is designed to fight off infection, it can begin to damage healthy cells if inflammation does not dissipate when it should.  This process can damage DNA and lead to several diseases including cancer, heart disease, arthritis, and Alzheimer’s.

Alcohol Is Chronically Inflammatory

While the exact cause of chronic inflammation isn’t always identified in every individual that experiences this condition, there are several conditions and behaviors that have been found to be associated with persistent inflammation.  People with an autoimmune disorder or an untreated infection may suffer from chronic inflammation. Additionally, unhealthy lifestyle choices such as alcohol and tobacco use can cause chronic inflammation as the body attempts to rid itself of these harmful toxins.  Many people who struggle with alcohol addiction live with a great deal of internal inflammation that affects their quality of life and increases the risk of several serious illnesses. If you believe you may be suffering from chronic inflammation due to drug or alcohol use, it is important to seek treatment from a holistic recovery program that can address substance abuse issues as well as physical health.   

If you or someone you love is struggling with addiction, now is the time to reach out for help.  At Arbor Behavioral Healthcare, you will meet knowledgeable, compassionate professionals that understand addiction in all its forms.  The Arbor uses an integrative and holistic approach to treat addiction and mental health issues. No treatment is one-size-fits-all, and at The Arbor you will have a team of experts prepared to create your customized treatment plan.  We offer care for your mind, body, and spirit, so that you can heal from the inside out and look forward to a lifetime of sobriety and wellness. If you are ready to take the first step in your recovery, please call us at 844-413-2690.