Autoimmune disease includes a group of symptoms that may affect a specific part of your body or cause widespread problems. Dr. Shaw has the expertise to restore your immune system and alleviate these symptoms. If you’re fatigued, have unexplained skin conditions or nagging joint and muscle pain, contact us to schedule a free consultation.
What are the symptoms of autoimmune disease?
Each autoimmune disorder has unique symptoms that are specific to the part of the body affected by the disease, including:
- Joint or muscle pain
- Weight gain or loss
- Skin conditions
What is autoimmune disease?
Your immune system exists to protect you from disease by identifying and destroying threats, such as:
An autoimmune disease develops when your immune system begins to attack normal, healthy tissue in your body. Determining the cause is challenging because genetics, infections, viruses, drugs, systemic inflammation, and environmental factors like stress all may contribute to immune malfunction.
Who is at risk for autoimmune disease?
Anyone can develop an autoimmune disease, but women have a higher risk. If you develop one autoimmune disease, you have a higher chance of developing another one. Since autoimmune diseases can be linked to genetics, your family history is also a risk factor.
What are the different types of autoimmune disease?
There are more than 80 types of autoimmune disease, which are generally organ-specific and non-organ-specific but may fit both categories. Non-organ-specific diseases cause problems throughout your body, while organ-specific conditions affect your:
- Endocrine glands
Some of the most well-known chronic health conditions are autoimmune diseases. For example, rheumatoid arthritis, fibromyalgia, multiple sclerosis, and irritable bowel syndrome are autoimmune disorders. Women are five to 10 times more likely than men to develop:
- Hashimoto’s thyroiditis (underactive thyroid)
- Graves’ disease (overactive thyroid)
- Autoimmune hepatitis
- Sjögren’s syndrome, which causes dry eyes and dry mouth
How does Dr. Shaw treat autoimmune disorders?
Dr. Shaw treats autoimmune disorders using a functional medicine approach: Instead of focusing only on the part of your body exhibiting symptoms, he explores:
- How your systems interact
- Your diet
- Environmental factors
He will also help you explore the role of stress in your life. Many people report exceptional stress prior to developing autoimmune disease. Once the disease develops, it causes more stress and anxiety, evolving into an increasing cycle of stress. Dr. Shaw can help you break that cycle by looking for deficiencies that need correction, while finding ways to help your immune system heal.