Parasites and Pain: Impact on Health
What are Parasites?
Parasites, like various worms, tiny organisms, and spiral-shaped microbes, have become a focus of scientific study due to their ability to cause pain in their hosts using different methods. These parasites can harm tissues, release harmful substances, or trigger an immune response, leading to swelling and pain.
For instance, the parasite Schistosoma, responsible for schistosomiasis, is an example. It releases substances that activate pain receptors in the host’s skin and organs, causing discomfort and pain.
Parasitic Affect on Behavior
Some parasites have evolved complex ways to control their host’s behavior, including changing how the host feels pain. For example, Toxoplasma gondii, often found in cats, can infect rodents and change their brain chemistry, making them less afraid of predators, including cats. This helps the parasite spread to its final host.
It’s important to know that not all parasite infections result in noticeable symptoms. Some people don’t show any signs or have mild ones, influenced by factors like the type of parasite, the host’s immune response, and overall health.
The CDC has disclosed that roughly 14% of the US population has encountered Toxoplasmosis. With numerous parasites and various ways of spreading, it’s increasingly likely that many people carry some form of parasite. Surprisingly, many may not connect their symptoms to parasitic infections. In my clinical practice, I’ve seen parasitic infections as underlying issues impacting patients’ health.
Naturopathy and Parasitic Treatments
Naturopathic medicine emphasizes treating the root causes of health problems and removing barriers to recovery. Parasites engage in complex interactions with their hosts, depleting resources and nutrients from the immune system, evading standard tests, and affecting nearly all body systems.
From my clinical experience, I’ve seen parasitic infections linked to a wide range of concerns. These include seemingly simple issues like joint discomfort, recurring skeletal issues, low vitamin D levels causing tiredness, as well as more complex problems such as uterine fibroids, feelings of depression or anxiety, obsessive-compulsive behaviors, difficulty sleeping, and heart problems. Patients have seen significant improvements through naturopathic methods, particularly through Autonomic Response Testing and the development of a personalized treatment protocol using botanicals, drainage remedies, binders and other various therapeutics. If you suspect you may have parasites, reach out to us about starting your journey to health.