In the word mentioned above, psycho refers to the thoughts and emotions, neuro refers to the brain and nervous system, and immunology refers to the study of the immune system.
The study called psychoneuroimmunology is a study about how the mind affects the immune system. Research indicated that the thoughts and feelings directly affect our immune system and its function. Our goal is to breakdown the science into a format that would be simple enough to understand the form with practical applications.
Psychoneuroimmunology (PNI) represents a study of the Mind-body connection. Researchers that work with this study try to discover how the emotions and thoughts influence the brain, hormones (endocrine), nervous system, and immune system.
Just like our thoughts influence the immune system, in the same way, the immune system affects our feelings. The changes that are happening in the immune system also make changes in our nervous system, which will result in different emotions. Shortly said, the stress and unhealthy food will influence our brain, thoughts, and feelings.
PNI experts are concerned with the interactions which are happening among out nervous, endocrine, and immune system and disease. Maybe the links and interactions between these different systems are very complex, and they can be explained more straightforwardly.
If you experience fear, anger, or different emotions, which can increase the stress level, then the thoughts are picked up by the brain. Next, the brain stimulates the endocrine system to release certain hormones that have an unfavorable effect on the immune cell’s ability to divide. This results in a decline in the function of the immune system, which will make us more susceptible to illness.
Previously explained means that our mental state influences our immunity. Researches are here to reveal the intricate connection between our psychological state and immune system.
The Immune System
The immune system represents a complex net of cells and proteins that will keep us safe and protects us and our body from infections.
On the first line of defense is the body’s protective unit.
The immune system defends us from alien bacteria, viruses, fungi, and parasites. Also, it destroys invaders using an army containing white blood cells, natural killer cells, and T-cells. Also, this system promotes gut bacteria, which is crucial for a reliable and potent immune system.
The immune system includes organs, tissues, cells, and cell products, which are all connected, and they work together to protect us from the harmful substances similar to the pathogens that create the infection and disease.
So, according to the previously mentioned information, if we are overexposed to stress, then the normal function of the immune system will be disrupted, and we will be prone to illness and disease. If the stress is prolonged and unrelenting, then it is called chronic stress. It is crucial to mental and physical health. An example of chronic stress is the constant worrying related to our family or some other problems.
There is another type of stress, and that is Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD).
Also, the immune system represents a collection of billions of cells that are moving around the bloodstream. The path that they are passing is in and out of the tissues and organs, defending the body from the foreign bodies, also called antigens, like bacteria, viruses, and cancerous cells.
White blood cells are the crucial cells of the immune cells. In our organism, we have two types of blood cells: Lymphocytes and Phagocytes.
And there are two types of lymphocytes:
B cells produce antibodies that are let into the fluid that surrounds the body’s cells to destroy the harmful viruses and bacteria.
T cells lock on to the infected cells, if a cell is infected, multiplies, and destroys it.
Now, when a person is stressed, his immune system is weaker, and it doesn’t have the strength needed to fight the viruses and bacteria. In this situation, the person is more susceptible to infections.
Corticosteroid, the stress hormone can lower the number of lymphocytes, or suppress the effectiveness of the immune system.
Healthy Mind vs. Stressful Mind
One of the reasons why people live longer and don’t have diseases is a positive mind and positive life.
Everything that we imagine, every thought that we create in our mind, makes a chemical that alerts the body to feel as we are thinking. Because of this, our thoughts will generate feelings and vice versa. This is how a vicious cycle flows, what kinds of ideas we have in the morning, that is how our day will be.
The stress hormones are the result of numerous complex factors like interaction among the stressors and our perception of stress.
The crucial factor of stress management is the role of our perception. A lot of people believe that it is external stressful situations or people that cause it. But it is not correct, because we all have different reactions to stressful situations. If a pessimistic thinking style influences us, then the situation will be regarded as a threat, and it will be more stressful than if we are a flexible, non-rigid, optimistic manner. It means that how we see the world influences our health and wellbeing.
Stress can be a cause of different behavioral coping strategies like drinking, smoking, drugs, gambling, shopping, and eating.
Also, the experts link stress to headaches, mostly migraines, an infectious illness like flu, cardiovascular disease, diabetes, asthma, GI issues, and autoimmune disease.
Bruce Lipton said that our organism would be protected if we are stress-free. But if our mind is stressed out, then we will be in a breakdown mode, which means that we will be prone to diseases and illness.
Chronic stress causes chronic inflammatory conditions, interrupts the smooth operation of the digestive system, and also it lowers the immunity of those with a healthy one. When the stress becomes chronic, it releases high levels of cortisol, which flows around the blood.
If you don’t understand these things, then the main thing that you need to know is that too much CORTISOL run HAVOC in our body system.
Previous experiences shape our perception. But, we are people, and nothing is perfect, neither is our life. Our past experiences are not all full of joy and love.
Below, we present you with a couple of tips and hacks on how to control the stress.
- Have a positive attitude
- Some things we cannot control
- Be assertive. You need to assert your feelings, opinions, or beliefs.
- Practice meditation, deep breathing, and mindfulness
- Do your exercises daily, because it can control your stress
- Set your limits and goals, and don’t accept excuses.
- Pay attention to your hobby, interest, and relaxation.
- Get quality sleep and rest. You and your body need time to eliminate the stress.
- Don’t search your solace in alcohol, drugs, and compulsive behaviors to reduce stress.
Our cells can transmit and accept a lot of non-physical packages of information that affect our behavior. The stressful situations will make our heart beat faster, and that signals our cells to change their behavior.
Stress will ruin the function of the major organs, which will contribute to a disrupted energy field.
If we are stressed, our cells are turning into their protective state. They are either in a state of harmony or in a state of protection. The conscious minds influence cell behaviors, and the cells respond to thoughts.
Below, we present to you the factors that affect cell behavior.
QUESTION: What kind of influence the mood has on immunity?
If we have low vibrational emotions like fear, anger, and different negative emotions, it very hard to have a balance between the systems of the body.
Soon, the emotions will influence our immune system, and we will feel the feedback from the body.
The hormonal system in the body is a significant player when it comes to maintaining a healthy balance. Many medical conditions are a mystery to the doctors, which can be caused by glands suppressed from natural function.
Meditation is medication
Meditation is a stage where our body is in a relaxation stage. During meditation, our body resets, and it is balanced. Those people who are very stressed, they need to practice meditation and to restore the balance in their organism.
Stress makes our immune system dysfunction, which can lead us to be susceptible to disease.
Immune system suppressants:
Simply said, the emotional suffering can cause disruptions of the function of our immune system.
Since the immune system reacts to both negative and positive thoughts, meditation creates a perfect environment for the blossoming immune system. Better health, more energized, and great happiness are the things that are coming after meditation.
How to strengthen the immune system?
Positive emotions are the first thing that comes on my mind and influences the immune system, not the chemical. If we are more optimistic, we will have stronger cell-mediated immunity. If our body is in a harmonious state, the body and all of our systems aligned and working together, then we will live in health and wellness.
Relaxation response represents a process of de-escalating the stress response, which also includes relaxation, says Dr. Herbert Benson.
You need to avoid things like watching television, electronics, internet, socializing because these things are still stressing our brain.
Dr. Romie suggests progressive muscle relaxation, energy healing, acupuncture, massage, breathing techniques, prayer, some meditation, and many other techniques that will prompt the relaxation response.
All the significant systems are aligned together.
- The respiratory system will cause more rhythmic breathing
- The cardiovascular system is better, and the heart rate slows down.
- In the immune system, more white cells are released.
- The lymphatic system improves circulation.
- The endocrine system will balance the levels of the hormones.
- The digestive system will allow the body to rest and digest.
Some digestive problems can be related to stress, and the doctors tell us to take some medicaments.
The experts said that they have evidence that positive emotions can enhance the immune system, and the negativity can disrupt it.
The understanding in the past emphasized that the mind and the body are linked with each other. PNI only represents the importance of communication between the brain and the body.
PNI represents a study that shows the interaction between psychological processes, the nervous and immune system in the body. It also interrogates the effect of our thoughts on the emotions, and on our health.
Mindfulness in our thoughts and emotional reactions will improve our sense of wellbeing. We will realize that we are the ones that control our body and mental breakdown as a result of improper health care. The state of mind is the primary thing that affects all the systems. We need to pay attention to our thoughts, moods, emotions, and other mental realizations.