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Suite B, Flagstaff, AZ 86001

What is Acute and Chronic Disease?

Naturopathic solutions to help you heal naturally from...

Acute and Chronic Disease

Whether you are trying to heal from a new condition or chronic one, our doctors take the time to get to know you, explain the underlying causes of your symptoms, and then offer the best naturopathic treatment options with the least side effects. At Aspen Integrative Medical Center in Flagstaff, Arizona, Amber Belt, ND, Paul Despres, NMD, and Alexandra Mele, ND, are naturopathic physicians trained to take a holistic approach to your condition and prescribe a personalized treatment plan to get you back on track.

What is the difference between an acute and chronic disease?

Acute and chronic diseases are two broad categories used to describe the duration and progression of illnesses.

Acute Diseases are characterized by a rapid onset and a relatively short duration. These diseases develop suddenly and typically have a severe or intense presentation. Examples of acute diseases include the flu, common cold, acute appendicitis, and acute bronchitis. Acute illnesses usually resolve within a short period, either through treatment or the body’s natural healing mechanisms.

Chronic Diseases on the other hand have a long-lasting and often persistent nature. These conditions typically develop slowly and persist for an extended period, usually three months or more. You may have heard from other providers that chronic disease can only be managed, but not curable. Well depending on your condition, that isn’t true and based on our experience chronic disease can often be cured or put into remission. Examples of chronic diseases include allergies, migraines, fibromyalgia, hypertension (high blood pressure), high cholesterol, asthma, and arthritis. Our clinicians have the means to help you manage your symptoms, slow disease progression, and improve your quality of life.

It’s important to note that the distinction between acute and chronic diseases is not always absolute, as some conditions can start as acute and progress into a chronic state if they persist or recur over time. Additionally, certain diseases may have acute exacerbations or flare-ups such as auto-immune diseases. Our physicians assess the duration, symptoms, and progression of a disease to categorize it as acute or chronic and determine the appropriate treatment approach.

Why is chronic disease care so important?

Did you know…

Six out of ten adults will develop one or more chronic diseases.

Autoimmune disease on average takes 8 years to progress before you notice symptoms. 

The dramatic rise of chronic disease is the newest epidemic and we firmly believe naturopathic medicine offers the best means to address it. Our naturopathic physicians are trained to identify it early on and/or stop the progression of the disease, so you can enjoy a healthy, fulfilling life. It is important to identify “silent” diseases before they reach a symptomatic or advanced stage using a number of standard and specialized testing. For example, our physicians may screen you for a high heavy metal load, signs of cardiovascular inflammation, and/or cutting-edge cancer markers, so treatment can be started right away. We firmly believe “an ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure” and everyone has the right to know their health risks.

What are the causes of chronic disease?

The causes of chronic disease can vary based on your condition. Sometimes there is a genetic component, but more often it is the “exposome” (external environment influences like toxins and infections) that is the driving force behind chronic disease. As naturopathic physicians we always investigate the underlying imbalances causing “dis-ease” within the individual and we commonly see the following triggers and/or contributors to chronic disease:

  • Leaky gut and dysbiosis
  • Immune system dysregulation leading to auto-immune disease
  • Inflammation 
  • Dietary and lifestyle factors
  • Stress and anxiety
  • Pollution and high toxin burden such as plastics, chemicals, heavy metals, glyphosate, mycotoxins, etc.
  • Chronic infections like EBV, Lyme disease, etc. 
  • Trauma and PTSD

For a natural healing approach to your acute or chronic concerns, call Aspen Integrative Medical Center or schedule an appointment online today.