Patients often come to us with symptoms of pain, sleeping issues, or reduced energy issues. Through the lens of traditional medicine, patients who experience one or more of these symptoms are typically given separate treatments for each. One of the biggest differences between conventional medicine and functional medicine, though, is the way in which patients are seen and symptoms are connected.
Instead of separate, isolated symptoms, we look at the relationship between underlying factors and the symptoms our patients are experiencing.
When recommending treatments or therapies, our goal is to find the best quality option with proven effectiveness. The challenge is to actually find a product or medication that does just this.
Low Dose Naltrexone (LDN) has emerged as a promising new treatment of many symptoms from autoimmune diseases to central nervous system disorders. While traditionally used for opioid addiction, recent studies have shown that low doses of Naltrexone can target autoimmune disease, Multiple Sclerosis, Fibromyalgia and more.
With nearly forty years of research supporting LDN’s usage for clinical purposes, it has never been more necessary for information about its benefit to become accessible to people who want to turn hope into results.
Learn more about how this exceptional form of therapy helps ensure the production of foundational compounds in the body and how it can eliminate health obstacles and provide healing solutions.
What is LDN?
Forty years ago, Naltrexone was designed to help opioid addicts kick their addiction and avoid relapsing. Naltrexone attaches to the opioid receptors without activating them, causing the receptors to be blocked. This prevents them from producing the effects that occur when opioids found in prescription pain medications and harmful drugs like heroin attach to the receptors.
Some of the benefits of using Naltrexone in opioid addiction include blocked pain, slower breathing, and feelings of calmness and anti-depression.
During the mid-1980s, Dr. Bernard Bihari, used the medication in very small doses with his HIV/AIDS and cancer patients. He was surprised to find that patient endorphin levels boosted 200 to 300 percent using only the low dose.
How Does LDN Work?
Researchers found that a low dose would only block receptors for a short time, allowing the spike in endorphins to be timed and intentional. Endorphins are the natural ingredient needed to enhance immune function and increase tolerance to pain.
If taken daily, a low dose of Naltrexone triggers the body to regulate endorphin secretion leading to a naturally higher pain tolerance.
As a pure inhibitor, LDN helps maintain a balanced and healthy immune system without producing any narcotic or suppressing effects. After LDN is consumed orally, it binds to opioid receptors on white blood cells. These are found all over the body, in places such as the central and peripheral nervous systems, the GI tract, and on lymphocytes.
The brain is tricked into thinking more endorphins are needed. By the time LDN works its way out of the system, the receptors are unblocked and receive a huge surge of endorphins.
Benefits of LDN
Numerous studies have been published about successfully use of LDN to reduce pain, fight inflammation, and treat other symptoms of many autoimmune diseases, including:
- Rheumatoid Arthritis
- Ulcerative Colitis
- Multiple Sclerosis
- Chronic Fatigue Syndrome
Although LDN has been found to be most beneficial with treating painful conditions (because of the endorphin spike), it has also been shown to boost the body’s immune function, reduce development and symptoms of chronic disease, and improve overall well-being.
Our use of LDN is safe with very minimal side effects. Some patients have reported nausea and vivid dreams while taking LDN. When considering the side effects vs. the benefits, each patient is different.
The conversation with your functional medicine provider will include an assessment of your symptoms, talking through the options available, and deciding if this compounded prescription is right for you.
When exploring the best treatment option, our providers are always looking for the right treatment for each individual. Low Dose Naltrexone may not be the right treatment choice for everyone (particularly those who already have elevated opioid production to begin with), but for those patients who need an effective option for a variety of symptoms, LDN could be the right choice.
To learn more about whether LDN is right for you, please contact our office to schedule a consultation. Kare Health and Wellness offers numerous testing and treatment options designed for patients with a variety of symptoms or autoimmune diseases, from advanced diagnostic testing to ozone therapy.
Our mission is to help you identify the root cause of your health concerns so that we can find the most effective and comprehensive solution possible.