The first reaction one usually has is to ask: “What can a chiropractor do for allergies?”
Allergies, at a basic level, can be understood as the body’s immune system reacting to something it believes is a threat by releasing histamine. Histamine is a chemical that causes increased blood flow, which serves to get increased numbers of white blood cells (the immune system) to an area to fight an infection. The allergy is a mismatch between what is actually disease causing, and what the immune system thinks is disease causing.
Virtually all functions of the human body are at some level controlled by neurological functions. That means that your nervous system if properly working, and unimpeded, should help keep your glands and other internal organs working at peak efficiency.
When there is some interference in nerve function, then the chemical environment in the tissues controlled by those nerves becomes out of balance, and pathological processes can start. Although the precise mechanism by which chiropractic adjustments influence allergic responses is not yet elucidated, we believe it to be from what was just described.
Numerous nutritional and dietary approaches are available to help your allergies. Please inquire with the doctor.
Allergies and asthma are conditions involving hypersensitivity of the immune system and of the airways (the tubes through which air passes between the nose and mouth to the lungs). During an asthma attack, the airways become obstructed due to muscle contraction, inflammation, and excess mucus production, resulting in wheezing and/or coughing symptoms.
The job of the immune system is to identify foreign substances such as viruses and bacteria and remove them. Normally, this response protects us from dangerous diseases. In a person with allergies or asthma, the immune system reacts to harmless substances such as plant pollen or animal dander and creates allergy (stuffy nose, watery eyes, etc.) or asthma (wheezing, coughing, shortness of breath) symptoms.
Asthma and allergies are closely associated because of the common systems involved — the immune system and the respiratory system. Often, an asthma attack can result from an allergic reaction. Asthma sufferers are also more susceptible to having colds develop into bronchitis, which can trigger an asthma attack.
Many allergic and asthmatic reactions are due to hypersensitivity of the immune system and/or respiratory system. This means that the immune and respiratory systems initiate an exaggerated response (allergy attack, asthma attack, coughing attack, skin rash) to something in the environment such as dust, pollen, grass, foods, etc. Since the immune and respiratory systems depend upon normal communication from the brain and spinal cord to control and coordinate their functions, alterations in neurological function can contribute to malfunctions in these systems. Specifically, an imbalance in autonomic nervous system function, caused by input from upper cervical spinal joint irritation (neck misalignment), can produce or exaggerate asthmatic and allergic symptoms via control over airway dilation and immune responses.1-21
While many asthma and allergy sufferers recall specific traumas such as head injuries, auto accidents or falls, which could have injured their upper cervical spines, some do not. In certain pediatric cases, the injury can occur from the normal birthing process. An upper cervical examination utilizing the latest techniques is necessary in each individual’s case to assess whether an upper cervical injury is present and whether benefit from upper cervical care can be achieved.