Is Inflammation Good or Bad? A Guide to Understanding the Pros and Cons of Inflammation

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Worldwide, around 3 out of 5 people perish as a result of chronic inflammatory diseases. Despite this, inflammation is also a survival mechanism our bodies use to protect us.

That makes one wonder: is inflammation good or bad? Keep reading to get the details about this complex issue.

What Exactly is Inflammation?

After our bodies suffer an injury, inflammation is a natural response. Inflammation happens because it helps to begin the necessary process of repairing the tissue. It also helps prevent infection.

Inflammation becomes problematic when the response gets triggered over and over. Instead of healing the body as intended, inflammation begins to cause damage. 

Positive Inflammation

What are the advantages of the body’s inflammation response? Here’s a brief list:

  • Expands blood vessels
  • Increases defense cells in the injured area
  • Facilitates healing

Let’s take a brief look at the inflammation process to get a better understanding.

First, the body gets an injury. This injury may be a result of harmful bacteria or trauma. The body responds by flooding the area with fluids. This is inflammation.

Finally, a battle ensues. White blood cells attack microbes. If white blood cells win the battle, then the tissue gets repaired.

Without inflammation, the body wouldn’t be as effective at healing. Doctors label this healing and beneficial inflammation as acute. Acute inflammation only lasts a few days to a few weeks.

Negative Inflammation

These positive aspects beg the question: why is inflammation bad?

Inflammation in itself isn’t, but chronic and long-lasting inflammation cause problems. Chronic inflammation can last from months to years.

What makes inflammation chronic? The underlying injury or problem causing the inflammation response hasn’t gotten resolved. So, the body continues to fight the problem with more inflammation.

Chronic inflammation may result from medical conditions like:

  • Asthma
  • Periodontitis
  • Crohn’s disease
  • Tuberculosis
  • Rheumatoid arthritis
  • Sinusitis
  • Hepatitis

The triggered inflammation response can result in even more injuries like pinched nerves. It’s necessary to learn more about potential injuries when suffering from chronic inflammation.

Here are other common causes of persistent inflammation:

  • Pathogens that the body can’t break down
  • Foreign bodies that are inside the system
  • Overactive immune responses
  • Persistent psychological stress

Doctors fight inflammation with medications and steroid hormones. Others use herbs or manage their diets to include foods to fight inflammation. 

So, Is Inflammation Good or Bad?

Acute inflammation is not only good, but it’s also necessary for survival. Chronic inflammation causes serious issues. At its worst, it plays a role in in the development of Alzheimer’s, cancer, and heart disease.

Inflammation is not a condition limited to humans. Pets are also susceptible to chronic inflammation.

Treating joint inflammation in you and your pets is easier than you think! Certain foods and oils can help both man and dog fight inflammation.

Looking at the Full Scope of Inflammation

Is inflammation good or bad? In short, it’s both. It depends on whether the issue causing the response can get corrected or not. 

If the body hasn’t healed the area, then it will continue triggering off responses.

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