Anxiety and OCD Onset By A Strep Throat Infection
Did you know anxiety and OCD can be triggered by a throat infection? PANDAS is an abbreviation for Pediatric Autoimmune Neuropsychiatric Disorders Associated with Streptococcal Infections (bit of a mouthful), which was founded by Dr. Susan Swedo.
Symptoms can include
- Difficulty to reason with
- ‘Oppositional Defiant Disorder’
- Fear of eating
In other words an infection caused by a bacteria called streptococcus can lead to plethora of ‘neuropsychiatric disorders’ . PANS (Paediatric Acute Onset Neuropsychiatric Disorders) has similar symptoms BUT is not linked to the bacteria streptococcus (aka strep). Research for PANS is showing that PANS can be due to the chicken pox virus, influenza A virus or even the H1N1 virus and in other cases other causes such as poisons, tumours or child abuse etc.
PANDAS is not a standard sore throat as you can imagine, it brings with it a whole host of other symptoms mentioned above. The throat itself can be incredibly painful, with a fever and enlarged tonsils, if left untreated in extreme cases this can lead to rheumatic fever. Strep throat is often treated with antibiotics and generally all the symptoms clear up; the neurological ones as well as the fevers etc.
There is a growing population in which it is believed that the antibodies developed to the streptococcus bacteria continue to create havoc even after antibiotic treatment. There are various theories as to why this may be the case but as a naturopathic practitioner I look at the presentation of the condition in each individual not solely the disease. So far each child that I have seen with PANDAS has presented slightly differently. Also the history of the case is of absolute significance.
Seeing children with PANDAS in clinic, a typical homeopathic prescription may vary across he board. It can involve giving the actual streptococcus bacteria back in homeopathic form, BUT the overall prescription is the key. I am looking at the individual symptoms and person not the ‘diagnosis’. So let me share a more recent case of a teenager with OCD and Anxiety.
Teenager with OCD and Anxiety: A 13 year old boy who had strep throat ‘on and off’ during his childhood and was treated with antibiotics every time, had another bout of strep throat a year ago following the death of his dog. He was prescribed antibiotics as routine and they helped. However, this time his anxiety and OCD which came on with the Strep infection did not clear. He refused to leave his bedroom for fear of something happening to him and he had to have someone in the house at all times. He was constantly checking his food to ensure it was not poisoned and would not drink any water from a tap for fear of water contamination. He was prescribed another dose of antibiotics by his doctor. This second round of antibiotics had no effect apart from some side effects- diarrhea and rash on his fingers and toes. This aggravated and intensified his OCD and anxiety levels.
Following a Skype session with Tom (he would not leave the house), I prescribed the Streptococcus bacteria in homeopathic form along side a remedy called carcinosin. At the second session his symptoms had dramatically improved and mum explained how (following the carcinosin remedy) ‘he had sobbed and sobbed’ over his dog’s death that happened a year ago. At the second session I prescribed a remedy for grief called Ignatia, following a high dose of Ignatia within 2 weeks Tom was according to his mum ‘back to his usual teenage life’.
How had his symptoms improved?
- He did not feel he had to stay in his bedroom to feel safe
- He no longer had a fear of being poisoned by his food or contaminated water
- He did not require glasses anymore AFTER having glasses for 6 years! (this was a new one, but nothing surprises me anymore)
- His mum notices that his ‘finger picking behaviour also stopped’ which he had from about 6yr onwards
- He was back at school and playing football again
Naturopathic medicine, be it homeopathy, naturopathy, nutrition are safe forms of medicine. If you have any queries or would like a free 15 minute Skype chat click here or to learn how to use homeopathy in your home contact me here to find out about my online courses.