How Ice Baths Helped Me Overcome Chronic Autoimmune Rheumatism
Mar 03, 2023
My name is Jim Hendriks, 26 years old and living in Castricum! Here's my story;
I went to Lisbon with friends for a weekend, having fun, enjoying the weather and the beautiful city!
Unfortunately, things turned out differently when I started to experience various physical complaints after severe food poisoning in Lisbon. About two weeks after the severe abdominal pain and fever, I started developing inflammation in my joints, lower back, muscles, and tendons. This resulted in me being unable to walk within a week, unable to stand the following week and finally being completely bedridden.
On December 22, I was admitted to the emergency room with a high fever and inflammation counts and was diagnosed with reactive arthritis. This would mean my body was attacking my own joints from an unknown infection that matched my story of food poisoning.
However, after additional investigations, this turned out not to be the correct diagnosis and I was diagnosed with chronic autoimmune rheumatism, axial spondyloarthropathy (Bechterew's disease) and peripheral spondyloarthropathy. I should switch to biologic injections that reduce the entire immune system to counteract the inflammation. After a blast of prednisone from late December to early February, and using tramadol, diclofenac, and other pain and anti-inflammatories before the ER admission, I started twice-daily ice baths and WHM breathing sessions in mid-January.
My inflammation levels dropped from 380 at the end of December to 29 at the end of February and I was able to walk and cycle without medication. I had no inflammation, except for a swollen ankle and toe. At the end of February I started exercising again and I can walk about a kilometer without crutches or a walker without being bothered.
I came into contact with Icetubs because I was looking for solutions in the Netherlands for ice swimming/cold showering and because I saw that people with the same diagnosis/prognosis benefited greatly. I was already somewhat familiar with the WHM, but was not actively involved in it. I sat in the ice bath for about 3 to 4 minutes every morning and evening and noticed tremendous improvement in my joints. The hot, red joints were suddenly not so painful anymore and everything could cool down and relax. Now, a month later, my joints are never red and sore without prednisone. I started to study the science behind ice baths and cold exposure and the possible positive effects this has on inflammation and resistance. It changed my life for ever and I am really happy with my Icebath.