It’s estimated that around 24 million people in American suffer from one autoimmune disease or another (often more than one). While the exact cause for most autoimmune diseases is unknown, there are certain aspects which may increase your risk of a an autoimmune condition.
We’ve listed five risk factors that are most associated with autoimmune diseases with help from prevention.com.
If a close member of your family has an autoimmune disease like lupus or multiple sclerosis, then this increases your risk of also developing one. You may not necessarily develop the same autoimmune disease as your mother or grandfather, but you will be at a higher risk of developing one of the hundreds of different autoimmune diseases.
Your Partner Has Celiac Disease
This may seem strange that your partner’s problem with gluten could somehow affect your immune system, but it’s likely that you may both have been exposed to the same environmental factors which could trigger both celiac disease and an autoimmune disease.
Women are more likely to develop an autoimmune disease than men. Autoimmune diseases will often strike at a young age and during a woman’s childbearing years, which could be linked to hormones.
Some autoimmune diseases are more likely to develop in women of color than white women. They also tend to present signs of the disease at an earlier age and suffer worse symptoms.
You Already Have An Autoimmune Disease
If you already have an autoimmune disease such as scleroderma or rheumatoid arthritis then sadly, you are more likely to develop one or two more autoimmune diseases. People who have three or more autoimmune diseases are classified as having multiple autoimmune syndrome.
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