Weakened Immune System: What to Look For

September 4, 2019
Constant fatigue, colds, and sore throats can be clear symptoms of a weakened immune system. Therefore, it's important to be able to recognize signals from your body when this happens.

Constant fatigue, colds, and sore throats can be clear symptoms of a weakened immune system. Therefore, it’s important to be able to recognize signals from your body when this happens. Remember, your immune system plays a key role in your well-being.

What is the immune system?

According to Stanford Children’s Health, “the immune system keeps infectious microorganisms, such as bacteria, viruses, and fungi, out of the body.”

However, sometimes, it weakens. Poor diet, stress, or other conditions may prevent it from fulfilling its basic functions.

What should you look out for to indicate you may have a weak immune system? We’ll explain them to you in this article.

How to Recognize a Weakened Immune System

Your immune system is your defense against certain external agents that can invade and harm you.

The network of cells, tissues, and organs that make it up are responsible for working together to protect your body. These protective cells are called lymphocytes, a type of white blood cell. Additionally, they’re responsible for attacking the microorganisms that cause diseases. These cells are located in the thymus, spleen and bone marrow. They’re called lymphatic organs.

If you have a low level of white blood cells at any given time, you won’t be able to face diseases very well. Therefore, it’s important to know what to look out for.

At that point, you should go to the doctor. Your doctor is the one that will figure out what caused your weakened immune system, then figure out a treatment plan. Keep reading to find out what the signs are.

1. Constant fatigue

People with a weak immune system usually feel fatigued.

There are indeed lots of things that cause fatigue.

However, when you feel constantly fatigued, including feeling exhausted when you wake up in the morning, that’s a sure sign that your immune system has weakened.

Another sign that you should pay attention to is when you feel tired even after not doing much. Also, you might feel uncomfortable when the temperature changes. All of these symptoms are important to take into account.

Maybe you’re interested in: Consequences of an Imbalanced Diet: Foods that Lead to Tiredness

2. Frequent infections can cause a weakened immune system

Urinary tract infections, stomach infections, or swollen or red gums are all indicators that something is not right. Additionally, if you suffer from diarrhea often, this may also be pointing to a weakened immune system.

Now, you might ask why things like this happen.

Most likely, the immune system is not fighting external agents as it should, so they take advantage and attack you. In other words: If it doesn’t have what it needs, so your immune system can’t defend you from bacteria, fungi, and viruses.

3. Allergies

Some people are more prone to suffer allergic reactions than others. In fact, things like dust, pollen or other environmental agents could pose a threat to your skin or mucous membranes.

Therefore, this is something that can end up affecting your health. If this is your case, it’s also possible that you have a weakened immune system.

4. Frequent colds

People with a weakened immune system usually get sick more often.

How many colds do you normally get every year? One per month? Does your throat always hurt? Do you catch the flu easily?

If so, you should go to the doctor to check your white blood cell count. You might have a weakened immune system, meaning it isn’t protecting you as it should.

5. Wounds that are slow to heal

Wounds that don’t finish healing, but get infected, inflamed and hurt, are usually symptoms of a weak immune system.

If this happens to you, you need to tell your doctor immediately. S/he will know what to do.

How to Strengthen a Weakened Immune System

1. Take Care of Your Diet

A good diet is synonymous with good health. However, sometimes we only follow one if we’re sick.

To avoid reaching that point, it’s important to follow a varied and balanced diet at all times. It needs to be rich in fruits, vegetables, and lean proteins, as well as low in sugar, fats, and alcohol. Also, citrus fruits are always excellent help to strengthen your defenses.

Maybe you’re interested in: Citrus Fruits May Help Prevent Obesity and Strokes

2. Get enough sleep to prevent a weakened immune system

Getting a peaceful and restful sleep is essential to keep your immune system strong. This way, your body can replenish its energy to make sure all of your systems work properly.

Insomnia and stress are the enemies of good health.

3. Hygiene and cleaning

To prevent having weak immunity, it's important to wash your hands regularly.

It’s important to wash your hands a few times a day. In fact, it’s just as important for your health as it is to keep your food clean.

Also, thoroughly wash the vegetables that you cook and the fruit that you eat. Run them underwater and make sure to get rid of any dirt you see. All of this is essential to prevent weakening your immune system.

5. Manage your stress well

Stress is not just your body’s response to a situation that you don’t like. If it persists over time, it could become a chronic condition, which could gradually make your health worse. Also, the buildup of toxins in your body could weaken your immune system. Then, you will get sick.

Keep all of these tips in mind. Set your priorities, take care of yourself, and dedicate some time to spend on yourself. Then, you can be safe from the common dangers that cause your immune system to weaken.

Stay healthy!

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  • Lozano Soto, F. (2012). “Introducción al sistema inmunológico, sus principales elementos y la respuesta inmunitaria”. En Farreras, R. Medicina Interna. Barcelona: Elsevier, pp. 2453-2488.
  • Matzinger, P. (2002). “The danger model: a renewed sense of self”, Science, 296 (5566): 301-305.
  • Pancer, Z., and Cooper, M. D. (2006). “The evolution of adaptive immunity”, Annual Review of Immunology, 24: 497-518.