Have you been plagued with recurrent urinary tract infections, thrush, skin abscesses, boils or shingles? Or do you frequently get coughs, colds, bronchitis, ear infections, tonsillitis or thrush infections? Do you think you may have a chronic EBV or a chronic tick-born infection?
Using both her experience in infectious diseases and functional medicine, Dr. Hale can determine what aspects of your health, including your gut health, are likely to be contributing to your susceptibility to recurrent infections. Although recurrent skin boils can be associated with highly contagious and virulent bacteria, most recurrent infections that interrupt our lives have to do with some sort of breakdown in our defences or immune system.
Whole body functional medicine assessments are what we do best at Hale Health Medicine. These help us determine which aspects of your systems-biology are adversely affecting the strength of your immune system and therefore increasing your susceptibility to infections. The explosion of research into the microbiome (normal bacteria and other flora) inhabiting our guts and other areas of the body, suggest that our over-sanitised modern lives, complete with courses of antibiotics, could be linked to increased poor health including allergies (especially children), infections and even autoimmunity.
Recurrent urinary tract infections in women, in particular, have been linked to a breakdown in normal healthy flora in the bowel and/or vagina. Paying attention to vaginal health, diet and specific prebiotic fibres has been shown to reduce susceptibility to urinary tract infections. Other recurrent infections can also be reduced with attention to diet and dietary fibre. The role of specific probiotic therapy has not yet been fully established, but in some people they have are very useful in decreasing susceptibility to recurrent infections.