ZocdocAnswersWhat would cause a person's immune system to weaken?

Question

What would cause a person's immune system to weaken?

I just feel like I get sick way more than other people do. Is my immune system weak? What would make a person's immune system not work properly?

Answer

While there are indeed many things that can cause one person to have a weaker immune system than other people, it is very rare for these conditions to not be noticed until a person is older. Most of these conditions are rare and have rather obvious effects from a young age. When people seem to be infected more than other people, it is usually due to another not so obvious personal characteristic of that person, whether it be working in a school around little kids, smoking, diabetes, improper or inadequate hand hygiene, or some other medical issue that predisposes that person to being more infected than others. Sometimes, these matters need to be discussed with a physician to identify risk factors that might not be readily obvious. That being said, however, there are some other conditions that are will lead to a slightly increased risk of infection. If you feel that you are more susceptible to common infections than most people, you should speak with your doctor about your medical history. He or she will be able to determine if further lab testing is indicated, which may then provide you with further steps that can be taken to decrease your symptoms.

This answer is for general informational purposes only and is not a substitute for professional medical advice.

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