How to check your immunity level at home? Most of the time, the immune system protects the body from infection. However, some people have a weak immune system that may make them prone to frequent infections.
How to check your immunity level at home?
Your immune system is your body’s defense against infections and other harmful invaders. Without it, you would constantly get sick from germs such as bacteria or viruses.
If you’ve noticed that you’re often sick, feel fatigued or have other nagging symptoms, which you can’t figure out, it may mean your immune system is weakened.
Your immune system is made up of special cells, tissues, and organs that work together to protect you. When your immune system is on point, it’s a lifesaver. But as good as it may be, it’s not perfect.
Sometimes, this group of special cells, tissues, and organs don’t act the way it should.
If you get sick often, feel fatigued, or have other ongoing symptoms you just can’t explain, it may mean you have a poor immune system. And there is any number of reasons why that might be.
The immune system is a network of cells and tissues throughout the body including bone marrow, the thymus, spleen, lymph nodes, white blood cells, antibodies, and other components. These work together to defend the body from invasion and infection.
Many disorders can weaken the immune system and cause a person to become immunocompromised.
These immunodeficiency disorders, which range from mild to severe, can be present from birth or may occur as a result of environmental factors.
Like, your immune system can be weakened by eating less nutritious food, a lack of sleep, and high-stress levels.
These things wear you down and make it difficult for your body to fight against illness. For example, stress causes the production of hormones known as cortisol, which can suppress the immune system,
Of course, an underlying illness might be to blame, too. Chronic disease, either disease of the immune system itself – immunodeficiency or autoimmunity; or other conditions such as diabetes, heart disease, and kidney disease, can all weaken the immune system,
What is an immunodeficiency disorder?
How to check your immunity level at home?
# Immunodeficiency disorders disrupt your body’s ability to defend itself against bacteria, viruses, and parasites.
# There are two types of immunodeficiency disorders – those you are born with (primary), and those that are acquired (secondary).
# Anything that weakens your immune system can lead to a secondary immunodeficiency disorder.
# Have an immune system that is too active. This may happen with an allergic reaction.
# Also have an immune system that turns against you. This is called autoimmune disease.
It means Immunodeficiency disorders prevent your body from fighting infections and diseases. This type of disorder makes it easier for you to catch viruses and bacterial infections.
Immunodeficiency disorders are either congenital or acquired. A congenital, or primary, the disorder is one you were born with.
Acquired, or secondary, disorders you get later in life. Acquired disorders are more common than congenital disorders.
What are the various types of immunodeficiency disorders?
How to check your immunity level at home?
# If you are born with a deficiency or if there is a genetic cause, it is called primary immunodeficiency disease. There are more than 100 primary immunodeficiency disorders. For example,
– X-linked agammaglobulinemia (XLA)
– common variable immunodeficiency (CVID)
– severe combined immunodeficiency (SCID), which is known as alymphocytosis or “bubble boy disease.”
# Secondary immunodeficiency disorders happen when an outside source like a toxic chemical or infection attacks your body. The following can cause a secondary immunodeficiency disorder,
– The immune system can be weakened by certain medicines, for example, people on chemotherapy or other medicines used to treat cancer. It can also happen to people after organ transplants who take medicine to prevent organ rejection.
– HIV, which causes AIDS, is an acquired viral infection that destroys important white blood cells and weakens the immune system.
How to check your immunity level at home? Check out the warning signs and what you can do to give your immune system a boost.
# Stress Level
Stress can weaken the immune system and make a person more susceptible to illness, long-term stress weakens the responses of your immune system.
Research shows that a person who is under excessive stress is more likely to get sick.
That’s because stress decreases the body’s lymphocytes, the white blood cells that help fight off infection. The lower your lymphocyte levels, the more you’re at risk for viruses like the common cold, as per the research.
People with a weak immune system should take steps to manage their stress. Practices that may reduce and manage stress include – yoga, meditation.
# Fatigue or Tired
Fatigue is one of the major symptoms of low immunity. It is a subjective feeling of tiredness but if you are constantly feeling exhausted or you get tired easily, it could be a sign that your immune function isn’t too great.
If you’re getting enough sleep and still suffering from exhaustion, it’s worth considering if your immune system is trying to tell you something.
Cortisol levels play an important role in regulating your immune system, elevated or lowered cortisol has an adverse effect on your immune system, which leads to fatigue. Some autoimmune diseases also lead to fatigue.
When your immune system struggles, so does your strength level. That’s because your body is trying to conserve energy to fuel your immune system so it can fight off germs.
# Catching Colds
It’s perfectly normal for adults to sneeze and sniffle through two or three colds each year. Most people bounce back in seven to 10 days.
During that time, it takes the immune system three to four days to develop antibodies and fight off pesky germs.
But if you catch every cold that goes around, make sure that – constantly catching colds and other viruses is a sign that your body may not be equipped to fight off the germs it is exposed to on a regular basis.
Of course, one severe cold may not be cause for concern. But any more than that may be a sign.
But if you’re constantly catching colds – or have a cold that’s won’t run its course – that’s a clear sign your immune system is struggling to keep up.
# Frequent Infections
One of the most common low immunity symptoms is an increased susceptibility to infections. If you need to take antibiotics more than twice a year (four times for children), your body may not be able to attack germs well on its own.
You may have infections that are more frequent, longer-lasting or harder to treat than are the infections of someone with a normal immune system, this means that your immune system is overwhelmed and can’t fight invading viruses and bacteria like it should. Like,
- Being sick with more than four ear infections in a year (for anyone over the age of 4).
- Developing pneumonia twice during a one-year period.
- Suffering from chronic sinusitis or more than three episodes of bacterial sinusitis in a year.
- Needing more than two courses of antibiotics a year.
# Stomach or Digestive problems
The health of your gut bacteria and the health of your immune system are vitally linked. When your gut bacteria are balanced, your immune system is also balanced.
If you have frequent diarrhea, gas or constipation, it could be a sign that your immune system is compromised.
Research shows that nearly 70% of your immune system is located in your digestive tract.
Food sensitivities are a major sign and cause of an immune system imbalance. Food, specifically undigested protein, looks just like a virus or bacteria and our immune system creates antibodies to fight it.
If you suffer from digestive problems like diarrhea, stomach infections and nausea on a recurring basis, it’s a sign that your immune system might be weakened.
Diarrhea, that lasts more than 2 to 4 weeks can be a warning sign that your immune system is harming the lining of your small intestine or digestive tract.
Constipation is a concern, too. Other possible causes include bacteria, viruses, and other health conditions.
Bacteria and cells live in your gut that are an important part of your immune system, so if all is not well it’s likely that your immunity is not that great either.
These digestive symptoms can be a sign that your immune system is misfiring, which could leave you vulnerable to infections, autoimmune disorders, or chronic inflammation.
# Wounds are slow to heal
Your skin is your body’s first barrier against germs. It means our skin is the first line of defense against invading viruses and bacteria.
A healthy immune system can greatly improve the body’s ability to heal by reducing the risk of infection. Itchy, dry, red skin is a common symptom of inflammation.
Your skin goes into damage control mode after you get a burn, cut or scrape.
Your body works to protect the wound by sending nutrient-rich blood to the injury to help regenerate new skin.
If the immune system is weak, bacteria, which take over the wound and begin to multiply, your skin can’t regenerate. Instead, your wounds linger and have a hard time healing.
# Anemia or Low blood count
Anemia is defined as a low number of red blood cells, caused by the destruction of red blood cells.
Hemoglobin is the main protein in your red blood cells. It carries oxygen, and delivers it throughout your body.
If you have anemia, your hemoglobin level will be low too. If it is low enough, your tissues or organs may not get enough oxygen.
The symptoms include the feeling of tiredness or weakness, shortness of breath, fast or unusual heartbeat, pain including in your bones, chest, belly, and joints, etc.
Allergies happen when your immune system reacts abnormally to harmless substances like dust, mold or pollen. The immune system may overreact by producing antibodies that may attack the allergen.
People with an autoimmune disorder sometimes have an allergic reaction to ultraviolet (UV) rays called photodermatitis.
You may get a rash, or scaly patches after being in the sun or you may get chills, a headache or nausea.
If you experience wheezing, itching, a runny nose, watery or itchy eyes, means your immune system is low and is overreacting to the allergen.
# Joint ache
Out of all the weak immune system symptoms, joint pain could be a result of an immune system imbalance. Conditions like arthritis (rheumatoid, reactive, psoriatic) are caused when you have a faulty immune system.
When the lining inside your joints becomes inflamed, the area around them is tender to the touch.
The impaired immune system can trigger autoimmune diseases like rheumatoid arthritis for an unknown reason, wherein the immune system attacks the healthy tissue causing lasting damage to good cells in your body.
Symptoms of joint are swelling of the joint or stiffness, redness, warmth, pain and fever and it can happen with more than one joint. You may notice that it’s worse in the morning.
# Hair loss
Hair loss or Alopecia areata is a condition, which usually affects the scalp. Alopecia areata causes one or more patches of hair loss it is the most well-known autoimmune disorder associated with hair loss.
It is an autoimmune disorder, in which the immune system is in overdrive and attacks hair follicles, which causes loss of hair.
An autoimmune disorder occurs when the body’s immune system attacks and destroys healthy body tissue by mistake.
A severe form of this is alopecia areata can also cause loss of eyelashes and eyebrows. So, if you are losing hair in patches it is highly likely that you have a weak immune system.
# Brittle or split nails
Fingernails are windows to your health. If your nails are thin or splitting you may be deficient in any or all of the following nutrients – essential fatty acids such as omega 3’s, the microminerals manganese or copper and the minerals magnesium or zinc.
If you have white spots on your nails you may be deficient in calcium or zinc and if you have pitting brown spots you may be deficient in vitamin C or folic acid.
A separation of the fingernail from the nail bed or an ongoing fungal infection can also be caused by a malfunctioning immune system.
Ragged nails with bitten edges are an obvious sign of stress, white horizontal lines, as well as brittle peeling nails, can also be caused by emotional stress.
Your immune system is the key to good health, so the more you can do to protect it, the better. Check it out before its too late!