What Are Chronic Infections?
Chronic infections, such as repeated ear, sinus and bladder infections, as well as Strep, croup and E. coli are common today.
The following conditions indicate a prolonged or persistent invasion of the body by these and other pathogens, which can be viral or bacterial:
- Reduced immune response
What Your Doctor May Tell You About Chronic Infections
Most doctors will tell you that the best way to protect your child from chronic infections is through using anti-bacterial products, and by washing hands frequently.
Once a child has an infection, doctors often prescribe an antibiotic, plus Tylenol, aspirin, Motrin, or another pain reliever.
If infections recur and recur, your doctor may suggest additional drastic measures, such as ear tubes, removal of tonsils and adenoids, and prophylactic antibiotics.
Another Way to Think About Chronic Infections
Prevention is based on the fear of getting sick.
Unfortunately, common medical procedures ignore the ancient wisdom that illness is the body’s way of ridding itself of undesirable invaders.
In our grandparents’ days, fevers, rashes and coughs were welcomed as necessary “spring cleaning.”
While treatments such as pain relievers and antibiotics can give immediate relief by suppressing symptoms, they can also have long term deleterious ramifications such as lowering immune resistance.
More importantly, they can start a vicious cycle of infections, antibiotics, increased inflammation and more infections.
Antibiotics kill both good and bad bacteria; they do not work against viruses.
They can also increase yeast, triggering more increasingly more chronic infections.
When infections recur, they are often more virulent, and can include behavioral symptoms such as obsessive compulsive disorder (OCD).
Originally this emotional disorder was linked only to recurrent strep infections, and called PANDAS, short for Pediatric Autoimmune Neuropsychiatric Disorder Associated with Streptococcus.
As doctors gradually realized that OCD can be triggered by numerous infections, they established the umbrella term PANS for Pediatric Acute-onset Neuropsychiatric Syndrome.
These infections include:
- Borrelia burgdorferi (a co-infection of Lyme)
- Mycoplasma pneumonia
- Herpes simplex
- Epstein-Barr virus
PANDAS is considered a subset of PANS.
Chronic Infections Check List to Start
Make dietary changes:
- Eat whole foods
- Buy organic foods
- Remove all GMO foods
- Remove all fast and processed foods
- Remove all foods with:
- Artificial colors
- Artificial ingredients
- With an elimination diet, remove potentially inflammatory foods such as:
- Strictly limit:
- Refined salt
- Refined carbohydrates
- Consider implementing the Feingold diet
Include plenty of good quality fats, such as:
- Coconut oil
- Olive oil
- Wild salmon
- Organic chicken
- Organic turkey
- Grass-fed ghee
- Pasture-raised eggs
- Grass-fed beef
- Essential fatty acids from:
- Cod liver oil
- Hemp seeds
- Flax seeds
- Evening primrose oil
- Borage oil
- Walnut oil
Remove vegetable oils such as:
Include plenty of high-quality proteins with every meal, such as:
- Pasture-raised eggs and chicken
- Grass-fed beef
- Wild-caught fish
Heal the gut with special diets such as:
- GAPS (Gut And Psychology Syndrome) diet
- Paleo diet
- GF/CF (gluten-free/casein-free) diet
- Body Ecology Diet
- Modified Atkins Diet (replaces the Ketogenic diet)
Learn more about healing diets and foods.
Use digestive aids with your practitioner’s guidance:
- Betaine hydrochloric acid
- Digestive enzymes with DPP-IV for gluten and casein intolerances
- Proteolytic enzymes
Clean up your environment:
Have you identified and removed possible environmental triggers, such as mold, dust, pet dander, and electromagnetic fields (EMFs)?
Have you identified and removed possible toxic exposures in the home from purchased products, such as detergents, soaps, lotions, and other cleaning and personal care products?
- Remove animals (both live and stuffed!)
- Remove carpets
- Use non-toxic cleaners
- Use non-toxic building materials
- Green your home
Avoid exposing your child to chlorine, fluoride, and bromine because all three are in the same family as iodine and can displace iodine in the thyroid gland.
Ask your pediatrician to run some laboratory tests for:
- Possible food sensitivities and allergies
- Enzyme-Linked Immunosorbent Assay (ELISA) IgG, IgA, IgE and IgM
- Nutritional deficiencies in vitamins and minerals. The NutrEval by Genova Diagnostics Labs covers the following areas:
- Cellular energy
- Mitochondrial metabolism
- Neurotransmitter metabolism
- Vitamin deficiencies
- Toxin exposure
- Detoxification need
- Bacterial and yeast overgrowth
- Gluten and casein sensitivities
- Organic acids: The organic acid test by Great Plains Laboratory for:
- Yeast overgrowth (Candida)
- Other microbial infections
- Comprehensive Stool Analysis by Genova Diagnostic Labs to identify:
- Altered gastrointestinal function
- Bacterial/fungal overgrowth
- Chronic dysbiosis
Add fermented foods and probiotics daily:
These will keep the gastrointestinal system and microbiome healthy and strong which in turn will keep the immune system strong.
- Eat kefir yogurts
- Eat fermented vegetables
- Eat umeboshi plums (very alkalizing)
- Eat miso soup, if soy is tolerated
Some good probiotics are:
- Gut Pro
- Dr. Ohirra’s Live Cultured Probiotics
- Garden of Life
- Klaire Labs
Use herbs, essential oils and natural supplements with your practitioner’s guidance:
- Vitamin D3
- Vitamin K
- B vitamins, especially niacin if strep is concerned
- Vitamin C, especially liposomal vitamin C
- Cod liver oil
- Trace minerals
- Methylcobalamin B12
- Folinic acid or 5MTHF if your child has methylation issues
- Colostrum and/or transfer factor for those who do not have severe allergic reactions to dairy
- Mushroom blends such as Core Mycelia
- Turmeric or curcumin
- Antimicrobial herbs and supplements
- Olive leaf
- Oil of oregano
- Grapefruit seed extract
- Samento (cat’s claw)
- Arentyn or Smart Silver colloidal silver
- Apple cider vinegar for gargling
- Manuka honey
- Thieves’ oil
- N-acetylcysteine (NAC): helps with detoxification process and healing of the gastrointestinal tract
- MSM transdermal cream
- Epsom salts bath
- Low-dose naltrexone
Help your child detoxify:
- Ionic foot baths can help detox unwanted pathogens and are easy to do with children
- Infared saunas can detox heavy metals through the skin by sweating.
Lower stress levels:
Viruses, bacteria and other pathogens become more active when the body is in a state of stress.
By teaching your child ways to self-regulate with practices such as prayer, reiki, meditation, yoga, qi gong, tai chi and the Emotional Freedom Technique (tapping), they can become good advocates for themselves and become active participants in the recovery process.
See a homeopath or naturopath:
These practitioners can diagnose and treat underlying pathogenic infections while supporting the immune system’s function.
Still Looking for Answers?
Sources & References
Nsouli, T.M. The role of food allergy in serious otitis media. Ann Allergy 1991; 66:91
Pfotenhauer, K.M., et al. Vitamin D Deficiency, Its Role in Health and Disease, and Current Supplementation Recommendations. J Am Osteopath Assoc. 2017 May 1;117(5):301-305.