Your doctor prescribed prednisone and you know why he prescribed it, but what does it actually do? Why do you need prednisone? That’s the question I’m going to answer in this article.
What is PREDNISONE?
So prednisone is a prescription drug that mimics a naturally occurring hormone in your body. So when your doctor is giving you prednisone, what they’re trying to do is trick your body into thinking you have an extra of this really important hormone called Cortisol.
When that cortisol or hydrocortisone or other different ways that your body moves it around is high, it helps you cope with stress. So in essence, prednisone is coping with stress.
There are so many different kinds of stress. I know in America we think,
“Oh, stress is like I have a really stressful job, or I have a really stressful relationship”
But when I’m talking about stress, I’m talking about what our very distant ancestors would have considered stress. They would have considered stress being
“there’s a pack of coyotes chasing me or there’s no food to be had anywhere.”
What am I going to do? How can I cope with this? That’s the kind of stress. Hunger, terror, running from a complete enemy like war, famine, those types of things are the stress that prednisone has and the hormone that it mimics in our body is designed to cope with.
Things that are quick and suddenly disappear. When there’s a man running after you with an ax, that’s what prednisone is for. It’s for helping you recover from running away from the tiger or from the ax.
Prednisone does this though at a cost. If you are recovering from that kind of serious stress, it’s doing it by stealing from other places. It’s telling your immune system
“Don’t worry about that. You don’t need to have an immune system right now. We are focus on recovering from running as fast as we can away from that scary thing. Hey inflammation, don’t worry. I know my muscles are inflamed right now because I’ve been running a marathon to get away from that thing.”
And so it turns off your inflammation and your immune system. Those are the two things it does so that you can recover from that incredibly stressful experience of running away.
What does it do to your body?
And why would we want this if we’re taking prednisone? Well, prednisone is used for a lot of reasons.
It can be used for people who have rheumatoid arthritis, people who have kidney problems, people who have lots of different inflammation or immune system problems.
I personally took it because my immune system was attacking my platelets and making me bleed to death potentially. So, my doctor gave me prednisone to stop the immune system from what it was doing.
So we’re basically taking what our body naturally does to recover from an incredibly stressful situation and we’re hijacking it. We are raising the dose as high as we can because normally we only have two and a half to five milligrams of the equivalent of prednisone in our body.
But this, this is 20 mg. We’re getting 10, 20, a thousand times the dose that our body’s normally used to so that it can cope with that stress. So that it has the ability to recover from whatever immune or inflammation problem is going on.
How does it work?
And so how does actually this little molecule in here do that?
Well, it goes into your body and your body turns it into a thing called prednisolone. And then, it goes inside the cell and tells your DNA to change what it’s been doing. Instead of sending out one message, it changes the messages that your DNA is sending.
So that’s how prednisone is working. It sends out different proteins than it normally would. It changes the way your cell interacts with other cells.
There are little things around your cell called receptors and those change for different types of cells. From your muscle cells to your heart cells to your inflammation and immune system cells. They are all being changed because those molecules are going in and changing the way your body reads the DNA.
Prednisone is Miracle
It’s pretty miraculous. It really is amazing that they found prednisone and that it can do such a miraculous thing as to change our DNA, the way we’re using our DNA and to tell our body,
“Don’t worry about that immune system, just ignore it for a little while. Don’t worry about that inflammation, just ignore it. We’re going to turn all that down so you can recover from your condition.”
Whether it’s rheumatoid arthritis, whether it’s a kidney condition, or whether it’s so that you can breathe again. Whatever your doctor prescribed it for, it has something to do with mainly those two things, inflammation, and your immune system.
And I promised you a gift at the end. If you are taking prednisone then you probably are aware that it causes 15 side effects. I personally suffered tons of those and so I did research to find what I could do to combat the side effects.
I came up with a checklist “The Prednisone Checklist “created by me, Dr. Megan, the prednisone pharmacist. You can get it by signing up the form below. This will help you to combat side effects by making small changes in the way you live your life so that when you take prednisone it will be simple and painless as possible.
It helps you combat the top 15 side effects, gives you 25 tips of what you can do, and answers the question of whether you are making the top seven prednisone mistakes. Check it out at the link below.
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