Autoimmune disease rates keep going up year after year. Things like Type 1 Diabetes, Rheumatoid Arthritis, Lupus, Celiac disease, Psoriasis, Irritable Bowel Disease, and Thyroid issues (Hashimotos and Graves) are becoming more and more common. Autoimmune diseases as a whole are the second cause of chronic illness in America. The question is why?
First, let’s look at what autoimmune really means. Basically, it is your body attacking itself. It identifies healthy tissue as a foreign invader and attacks. Depending on which tissue is attacked we give it a different name. There are a couple of things that can lead to an autoimmune issue. Genetics can play a role, as it seems to occur more often in women and runs in families. The “western diet” can lead to a damaged gut, which in turn can disrupt the immune system and cause an issue.
One thing that is often left out is the role of the nervous system in immune function. These two systems are interwoven, with the nervous system being in control of the immune system. If the communication between the two is interfered with, the immune system can get somewhat “confused” and begin attacking healthy tissue i.e. autoimmune disease. The brain and brainstem are the control areas of the nervous system. The spinal cord and nerves transmit the instructions to the body, and send sensory information back to the brain.
Imagine you are on the phone making dinner plans, and there is a lot of static on the line. It’s possible you show up at the wrong restaurant at the wrong time on the wrong day. The nervous system can also experience “static” in much the same way, communication breaks down and now we are in trouble.
The most common place this occurs is the upper neck. The lower portion of the brainstem (the master control of the nervous system) resides there, and anatomically, it is also a relatively weak area. Our 12 lb head sits on top of a 2 oz bone, connected by soft tissue. Even a mild whiplash type injury can knock this bone out of position, and cause it to interfere with the function of the brainstem. When this happens any number of things can go wrong, and improper immune function is one of them. As the bone sits out of position day after day, greater and greater damage is done, which often leads to a worsening of symptoms over time.
Not all autoimmune issues stem from the neck, but as I have seen over the last decade, a great number of them can be alleviated by correcting an upper cervical misalignment, and a alot of patients have experienced complete remission.
We all like a miracle story right? Several years ago a patient we will call Ann came into my office. She suffered from Rheumatoid Arthritis. She was in constant pain, scared to death about her future, and on the maximum dose of her meds. Ann asked if I could help her. I told her that I couldn’t make any promises, but everyone can benefit from an interference-free nervous system. An exam and precision x-rays showed us the top two bones in her neck were misaligned. They were corrected, and within three months Ann was off all her medications, and had a new lease on life. Not every case is a homerun like Ann, but I have seen far more successes than failures. It is an easy thing to have your upper neck evaluated to see if it may be contributing to your illness. From what I have seen, it is worth your time to investigate.
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Dr. Lee Angle
Dr. Lee Angle is originally from southern West Virginia. After having his life changed through Upper Cervical Care he chose to pursue it as a career. He has been practicing Upper Cervical Chiropractic for over nine years. Dr. Angle previously worked as a certified personal trainer. This background allows him to educate his patients on proper movement and exercises to speed their recovery and enhance their Upper Cervical Care.