A weakened immune system makes it harder for you to fight off germs that cause the common cold and flu. And since your immune system can be a bit weaker during pregnancy, you may be more vulnerable to viral infections. But since many over-the-counter cold medications aren't safe to take when you're pregnant, you may want to consider an alternative therapy, such as chiropractic treatment, to help boost your immune system and ward off nasty cold viruses.

Chiropractic Care and Body Systems

Although chiropractic care can't cure colds and flu, by maximizing your nervous and immune systems, you can help prevent illness or aid your body in healing faster when you do get sick. Whether chiropractic adjustments to your neck and spine release stress on nerves or improve lymph flow, chiropractic care focuses on helping your body systems function better.

Central Nervous System

A healthy nervous system helps to ensure that the body's other systems–including the immune system–are functioning properly. Spinal adjustments to correct vertebral misalignments that put stress on the nerves can help increase your body's resistance to illness. The release of pressure off the nerves allows your immune system to work better, making it easier for your body to fight off colds and flu.

Subluxations that cause structural stress on the spine can weaken your immune system, which then make you more susceptible to viral and bacterial infections. While you still may catch a cold, by strengthening your body's natural ability to fight off illness, spinal adjustments, along with exercise and nutrition advice offered by a chiropractor, can mean being sick for a shorter duration.

Lymphatic System

Lymph nodes filter out viruses, bacteria, and other harmful pathogens from lymph fluid. Therefore, when your body is fighting off infection, the lymph nodes in your neck may become swollen–a condition that often occurs when you have cold or flu symptoms.

Lymph fluid drains out through a network of lymph ducts found throughout your body. Some of these ducts are located along your spine and in your neck. When your spine or neck get out of alignment, whether from muscle tension or an injury, these lymph ducts can become blocked or congested.

Muscle contractions move the lymph fluid from body tissues to the bloodstream where white blood cells are then carried throughout the body. But when a vertebrae in the spine isn't in the proper position, communication between the brain and musculoskeletal system is disrupted, which can affect the function of the lymphatic system.

Chiropractic adjustments that put your neck and spine back into proper alignment relieve pressure on congested lymph ducts. This allows lymph fluid to flow freely again, which strengthens your immune system, helping to protect against colds and flu.

Chiropractic Maintenance Therapy

Regular chiropractic maintenance is an alternative to taking over-the-counter cold medications that can cause side effects and affect fetal development. Chiropractic maintenance care often includes preventive services such as hands-on soft-tissue manipulation, exercise, nutritional advice, and instruction in relaxation techniques–all preventive measures that help counteract the negative impact of physical and emotional stressors on your body that can lead to illness and disease.

For more information, contact a local chiropractor, such as Angie Wilson.