Active vs. Induced Immunity

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Active immunity or long lasting immunity is when a person’s body builds up a resistance to a certain pathogen through accidental or unplanned introductions.

When a pathogen enters the body it will begin to develop the needed cells to protect and fight against it, once enough are created, the pathogen will no longer be able to overtake the body again without being defeated by the immune system. 

Active immunity occurs naturally while induced immunity involves purposefully introducing pathogens, usually via. injection when a person is well.  Allergies, tissue rejection and autoimmune diseases are all side effects, which are possible when the pathogen is initially introduced.  Any one of these reactions may occur when the body reacts to the pathogen and is not able to determine between self and non-self.  These accidental reactions are risks, which have to be taken when hoping to create active immunity to a disease.

While building immunity to a disease or illness is convenient and preferred, it is impossible to do so for any and all ailments.  It is in these cases that antibiotics are often introduced.

Antibiotics or antimicrobial agents are created by bacterium and fungus, which protects certain environmental organisms from other competing ones.  Bacteria cells are not like human cells so they will only seek out the pathogens and kill them.  It is possible that problems will occur however when people either have an allergy to the antibiotics or else they can eventually start to kill off the natural bacteria which is created in the intestinal tract and create a dependence on these drugs to do the job that our bodies were once naturally equip to fend off.

When looking to either prevention or treatment, it is always safer to first allow the body to put up its own defenses and only offer assistance, if the immune system is completely ‘outmatched’. 

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