Holistic health remedies for PANS/PANDAS in individuals with ASD or other patients can offer help for both the parents as well as the child. As a mom with child with PANS, I fully understand that the nervous system of a child with PANS/PANDAS experiences stress that causes overworked and agitated state.
The symptoms and finding relief for them, drains not just the affected child but also the whole family.
Why use holistic health remedies for PANS/PANDAS?
Holistic therapies for PANS/PANDAS disease provide one of the least invasive but most useful ways to help relieve the symptoms associated with this very difficult and draining illness. Since the body is physiologically designed to deal with stress before healing, practicing daily relaxation techniques is the first step to a healing regimen.
Chronic illnesses cause a higher level of stress which in turn interferes with the healing process. There are a variety of homeopathic therapies that may be beneficial for afflicted children. Because everyone’s physiology and makeup are different, each person responds to a therapy in a unique manner.
Many therapies work synergistically and most who live well with or remediate PANS/PANDAS tend to do a combination of these holistic treatments and adopt a more holistic lifestyle.
What is detoxification?
Problems with detoxification are another common issue preventing those with chronic illness from healing. Detoxification is what your body constantly does naturally to neutralize, transform or get rid of unwanted materials or toxins.
Sometimes the toxic load is simply too much for one’s body to keep up with and other times there are genetic issues interfering with detoxification. Supporting detoxification is an integral part of supporting the healing process.
How Can Nutrition Help?
Diet is essential for individuals suffering from PANS/PANDAS. A healthy diet with emphasis on an anti-inflammatory diet helps with micronutrient absorption, which in turns helps the body and brain work better.
When one has a chronic or an acute illness, you need as much as you can get from your body and by putting in good nutrients that can be achieved.
Disease states rob the body of nutrients, so eating nutrient dense food is essential in order to promote healing. Moreover, an anti-inflammation PANS/PANDAS diet reduces inflammation in the body and brain, which improves affect and behavior.
Inflammation plays a key role in autoimmune disease making its reduction essential for children who are subject to a misdirected immune response like in PANS/PANDAS. Importantly, reducing inflammation in a patient with PANS/PANDAS correlates with reduction in neuropsychiatric and neurocognitive symptoms.
What Are the Benefits of Neurofeedback?
PANS/PANDAS can impact brain functioning because inflammation and damage can lead to over activity or low activity. Adults and children PANS/PANDAS can display a variety of neuropsychiatric and neurocognitive symptoms that can completely interfere with one’s functioning and life.
While the severity of PANS/PANDAS symptoms varies from child to child, symptoms often wax and wane with environmental and new infection variables. Common symptoms include, but are not limited to, tics, obsessive compulsive behavior, rage, and separation anxiety.
Neurofeedback is a way to directly change brain wave functioning and to get the brain to self-regulate. When we get the brain to self-regulate, then we reduce negative behaviors and symptoms.
In the case of a child with PANS/PANDAS, anxiety, obsessive compulsive behaviors, anger, and other mental health irregularities can improve with Neurofeedback.
For example, one child was crippled by his separation anxiety, and the neurofeedback calmed his nervous system down significantly enough where he could have rational thinking. Once coupled with psychotherapy and parent coaching, he was able to fully normalize his anxiety.
Over time, adding neurofeedback led to a gradual decline in anxiety in daily life which reduced separation anxiety allowing the parents to get therapeutic coaching to support the child at home.
What Does BRT/PMF Do?
For those with PANS/PANDAS, they experience psychiatric and neuropsychiatric problems that result from their body’s misdirected immune response to an infectious agent.
Pulse Electro Magnetic Frequency Therapy (PEMF) and Advanced Bioregulation Therapy (BRT) is a technology that helps to create an environment that promotes cellular communication, increased cellular nutrition, and self healing.
This can lessen associated symptoms, reduce pain, improve detoxification, decrease anxiety, and increase feelings of well being. BRT amplifies the “healthy” harmonic frequencies, and sends them back to the cells. Once the cells are working more optimally, the nervous system calms down, and disruptive signals, which have become magnified over time, diminish.
BRT promotes an environment for the body to be able function optimally. The body’s nervous system then uses that feedback to reorganize itself and improve its own intercellular communication. With the feedback, the cells better align themselves within the organ system and entire body. As a holistic remedy for PANS/PANDAS, PEMF/BRT can provide immediate calming and improve restorative sleep.
It is also a very non-invasive and easy to administer therapy, which is important with the range of difficult behaviors that can be present.
Can Homeopathy Work?
Individuals with PANS/PANDAS often use homeopathy, herbs, and supplements is an integral part of their healing and improving their day to day life.
Functional lab work looks at deficiencies and irritants to the body which allows PANS/PANDAS doctors and practitioners to and evaluate organ and systems functions rather than looking for a specific disease, individuals take a prescribed regimen of supplements that help their body and brain work better.
Homeopathy, herbs, and supplements can be very effective and powerful in addressing a variety of issues. There are great products for addressing both the immune part of the disease and the psychiatric issues that can result, as well as problems with detoxification. They not only become part of daily regimen, but also part of the PANS/PANDAS treatment arsenal when symptoms increase.
How Does Craniosacral Therapy Relieve Symptoms?
Using a soft touch, practitioners release restrictions in the craniosacral system to improve the functioning of the central nervous system. It is a very gentle therapy but can be very effective in reducing some of the core symptoms found in PANS/PANDAS. Many PANS/PANDAS patients report improvements in stress, anxiety, headache, pain, feelings of well being and reduced agitation.
Should I Try Psychotherapy?
Individuals afflicted with and parents of children with PANS/PANDAS are often traumatized by their harrowing and long health journey. Psychotherapy at the right time with a literate therapist combined with more holistic therapies can make the world of difference for both parent and child. Managing these behaviors and the constant flaring that wreaks havoc on the patient’s life requires therapeutic support to help learn coping skills.
No parenting handbook for the behaviors and issues associated with PANS/PANDAS exists. Having a literate therapist to support the child and family can help the family mentally handle periods of flare and work through lingering issues during non-flare periods too.
My own personal experience as a mom of a child with PANS has been hard. Even with my knowledge, it took me about seven years to realize that we weren’t going to cure Max’s illness with all our mad dashes in the search for a cure, rather, we needed to take conserve our energy and look at this like a marathon. That shift and an emphasis on stress reduction therapies became a game changer for us.
Can EFT/Tapping and EMDR Alleviate Anxiety and Anger?
Individuals with PANS/PANDAS often experience anxiety and even trauma around their medical issues, and parents can experience the same when the patient is their child. EFT and EMDR is a way to unlock those unwanted feelings from our subconscious in a very effective way and help to reduce anxiety, irritation, anger, and a variety of feelings.
Any kind of emotional stress can impede the human body’s ability to heal itself. EFT and EMDR are tools that therapists use to release negative emotions and beliefs that are interfering with a patient’s emotional well being. They also highly effective tools for those experiencing psychiatric issues associated with PANS/PANDAS. EFT can be used to help manage pain, OCD, anxiety, anger, and other common psychiatric issues that cause children stress and make it hard for the body to heal.
Can Hypnotherapy help reduce angry and rageful behaviors?
Yes, hypnotherapy can be applied to many psychological, emotional and physical disorders. When one is in a chronic state of anxiety, pain, or illness, tapping into the subconscious to reprogram one’s state of mind, can positively alter one’s issues.
l For patients with the psychiatric components of the disease who are resistant to any type of cognitive or talk therapy, hypnotherapy is one of the most effective holistic health remedies for PANS/PANDAS.
Since the subconscious is typically in control of one's’ psyche, using therapies like hypnotherapy and neurofeedback, which work at the subconscious level can be very effective.
How can Massage help with chronic disease and PANS/PANDAS?
Aside from having physical advantages like pain reduction, reduced muscle tension, and improved detoxification, therapeutic massage can also be psychologically beneficial in that it reduces stress and anxiety and can improve mood.
People with chronic disease states like PANS/PANAS often have significant issues with detoxification, which interferes with clearing the disease and massage is a wonderful tool not only for stress and pain reduction but for aiding in detoxification.
What is Oxygen Therapy?
Many individuals with PANS/PANDAS find themselves trying oxygen therapy after many years of failed treatments. By increasing the amount of oxygen in the body, oxygen therapy encourages the body to heal itself. It can be a potent restorative healing therapy because.
Some children heal quickly with PANS/PANDAS, but for many, the journey for healing is long. Since many providers lack of knowledge, the inadequate means of diagnosis and treatment interfere with children getting the necessary help quickly making the healing journey even longer.
While oxygen therapy may be one of the last holistic remedies for PANS/PANDAS some try, it is becoming an increasingly popular viable treatment.
How Family Support and Lifestyle Changes Can Help
What I have learned in the 10 plus years for having a child with Lyme and PANS, is that you have to incorporate integrative therapies, eating properly, restorative sleep, and relaxation therapies into your regimen.
A reduction in amount or intensity of academic work or a switch to homeschooling with less social pressure is also essential in reducing illness flares. The daily grind of drone like work production is too much for most kids but is intolerable for those with PANS/PANDAS. This can lead to a worsening of symptoms or an inability to heal due to increased stress states.
A change in lifestyle, whether you want to or not, is needed to support chronic disease states and chronic stress. As a parent or loved one supporting a child with Lyme or PANS/PANDAS, you also need to take care of yourself.
This may have turned on overnight for some, but it often won’t rectify quickly or easily for most. You have to do what you can to protect yourself and reduce your stress levels. This is traumatic! As I see everyday, emotional stress can be the most harmful aspect of the disease that prevents healing.
There are may be many reasons why disease persists in some genetics, problems with detoxification, and elevated stress are key issues that prevent one from healing that need to be directly addressed and supported. While one may feel overwhelmed with the disease itself, changes in these areas can be a real game changer.
About Dr. Roseann
Dr. Roseann is a Psychologist who works with children, adults and families from all over the US supporting them with research based and holistic therapies that are bridged with neuroscience. Dr. Roseann is a Board Certified Neurofeedback (BCN) Practitioner and is a Board Member of the Northeast Region Biofeedback Society (NRBS) and Epidemic Answers. She is also a member of the International Society for Neurofeedback and Research (ISNR) and The Association of Applied Psychophysiology and Biofeedback (AAPB).
Dr. Roseann is committed to educating both professionals and parents about the effect on Lyme, Tick-Borne Disease, and PANS/PANDAS on the brain and body. She will be presenting on Neurofeedback for PANS/PANDAS at the NEPANS annual conference on November 18th, 2017 in Newtown, CT http://www.nepans.org/nepans-integrative-medicine-conference.html
Dr. Roseann is a Psychologist who works with children, adults, and families from all over the US, supporting them with research-based and holistic therapies that are bridged with neuroscience. Dr. Roseann is a Board Certified Neurofeedback (BCN) Practitioner, Certified Integrative Medicine Mental Health Provider (CMHIMP) and is a Board Member of the Northeast Region Biofeedback Society (NRBS) and Epidemic Answers. She is also a member of the American Psychological Association (APA), National Association of School Psychologists (NASP), Connecticut Counseling Association (CCA), International OCD Foundation (IOCDF) International Society for Neurofeedback and Research (ISNR) and The Association of Applied Psychophysiology and Biofeedback (AAPB).
©Roseann-Capanna-Hodge, LLC 2019