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Inflammation is part of the body's immune response. It can be beneficial when, for example, your knee sustains a blow and tissues need care and protection. Sometimes, however, inflammation can persist longer than necessary, causing more harm than benefit. Chronic inflammation can eventually cause several diseases and conditions, including some cancers and rheumatoid arthritis. We will talk more about this in today's afternoon post.

Symptoms of inflammation vary depending on whether the reaction is acute or chronic.

The effects of acute inflammation can be summed up by the acronym PRISH. They include:

● Pain: The inflamed area is likely to be painful, especially during and after touching. Chemicals that stimulate nerve endings are released, making the area more sensitive.

● Redness: Capillaries in the area fill with more blood than usual.

● Immobility: There may be some loss of function in the region of the inflammation.

● Swelling: This is caused by a buildup of fluid.

● Heat: More blood flows to the affected area, and this makes it feel warm to the touch.

These five acute inflammation signs only apply to inflammations of the skin. If inflammation occurs deep inside the body, such as in an internal organ, only some of the signs may be noticeable. For example, some internal organs may not have sensory nerve endings nearby, so there will be no pain, such as in certain types of lung inflammation.

Symptoms of chronic inflammation present in a different way. These can include:

● fatigue

● mouth sores

● chest pain

● abdominal pain

● fever

● rash

● joint pain

Inflammation is caused by a number of physical reactions triggered by the immune system in response to a physical injury or an infection. Inflammation does not necessarily mean that there is an infection, but an infection can cause inflammation.

Three main processes occur before and during acute inflammation:

● The small branches of arteries enlarge when supplying blood to the damaged region, resulting in increased blood flow.

● Capillaries become easier for fluids and proteins to infiltrate, meaning that they can move between blood and cells.

● The body releases neutrophils, a type of white blood cell filled with tiny sacs that contain enzymes and digest microorganisms.

As you can see, inflammation is a normal and healthy part of our body. This is how we respond to injury and begin our healing process. However, when inflammation goes unchecked, that’s when we start to worry. Thankfully, doTERRA has products to help us manage acute inflammation and support our body naturally so it doesn't become a chronic problem.

We presented lots of information about inflammation today. What was something that stuck with you? What did you learn?

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