According to the NIMH, an unexpected or terrible incident might decrease your body's immunological response. The loss of a loved one, for example, can enhance the production of nerve chemicals and hormones, increasing your risk of more frequent and severe viral illnesses, such as the flu, according to the agency. 20 Khordad, 1394 AP (Iran)#1394.
The World Health Organization reports that seasonal influenza affects between 5% and 20% of the world's population annually, resulting in 250,000-500,000 deaths per year.
The virus can be highly contagious and can be spread through contact with droplets emitted when an infected person coughs or sneezes. Other ways include contact with objects like doorknobs or handrails that have been contaminated with saliva from an infected person; or by eating food or drinking beverages that have been touched by someone with the virus.
In general, healthy people who are not immune-suppressed can withstand these infections every year without problems. However, for some people, particularly those who are elderly or have other health issues, these viruses may cause serious complications that could lead to death.
Immunity is our body's natural defense against illness. It is made up of two components: active immunity and passive immunity. Active immunity requires that your body make its own antibodies against specific pathogens.
8 Surprising Ways Your Immune System Is Weakening
When our immune system reacts to something that isn't an infectious agent, it might generate illness symptoms that aren't necessary. This sort of immunological response is related with allergic responses. Similarly, our immune systems can overreact, overloading our bodies and often terminating in death. These cases are called autoimmune diseases.
How does the immune system protect us from infections? It does so by identifying particles that are part of viruses or bacteria-antigens. These antigens are molecules that virus or bacteria use to infect cells. Our immune systems create antibodies against these antigens. If we are ever infected with the same virus or bacterium, our immune systems will recognize its antigens and destroy them before they can cause any harm.
Why does the immune system sometimes fail to defend us adequately? There are several reasons why this might happen. First, when we are very young, our immune systems do not produce enough specific antibodies. So, we need strong vaccines to stimulate their production. After childhood, our immune systems become more efficient at producing antibodies. Second, some people have problems with one part of their immune system, such as a deficiency of CD4+ T cells (which are important for activating B cells into making antibodies) or CD8+ T cells (which kill infected cells). Some people are also born with a reduced ability to respond to vaccines because of mutations in certain genes.
People with a weakened immune system are more likely to get infections and have severe symptoms. They may be more susceptible to pneumonia and other illnesses. Bacteria and viruses, particularly the virus that causes the illness COVID-19, can be lethal to someone with a weakened immune system.
People with a weak immune system include those who have cancer, are taking immunosuppressive drugs, have HIV/AIDS, or have some other condition that makes them vulnerable to infection. Additionally, people who are elderly or have another underlying health problem are at greater risk of having a serious reaction to COVID-19.
In general, people with a weak immune system are more likely to experience complications from an infection. The best way to prevent problems is by keeping your immune system strong by getting enough rest and physical activity, eating a healthy diet, not using alcohol or drugs, and managing any existing health issues.
In addition to being sick with COVID-19, people with weak immune systems are at risk for other problems. For example, they are more likely to develop serious complications from influenza or other illnesses. People who are aging or have another medical issue also are at risk for dehydration during diarrhea outbreaks.
The first step in treating someone with a weak immune system is to ensure their immediate need for food, water, and shelter are met.
Your stress level is at an all-time high. Long-term stress, according to the American Psychological Association, decreases immune system responses. This is because stress reduces the body's lymphocytes, which are white blood cells that assist the body fight illness. Further evidence that shows a connection between stress and immunity comes from studies on animals. In one study, mice were given electric shocks every time they made a mistake in a water maze test. Although eventually able to learn how to get around the maze, these stressed out mice had lower levels of antibodies and weakened cell-mediated immunity than unstressed mice.
Stress also affects how well you can fight off infections. When you're under stress, your body produces more of the hormone cortisol. Too much cortisol can suppress the immune system response. Studies have shown that people who experience frequent stresses have higher rates of infection-related illnesses such as pneumonia.
Finally, stress can lead to autoimmune diseases. An autoimmune disease occurs when the body's own defense mechanisms attack healthy tissue. Common examples include inflammatory bowel disease and type 1 diabetes. Research has shown that people who suffer from autoimmune diseases tend to be more prone to stress. This could be because those who experience chronic stresses have less room left over for their immune systems without harming them along the way.
In conclusion, stress has been shown to decrease immune system responses.