When taken at doses greater than the amount the body normally produces, steroids reduce redness and swelling (inflammation). This can help with inflammatory conditions, such as asthma and eczema. Steroids also reduce the activity of the immune system, which is the body's natural defense against diseases and infections. Corticosteroids are used to treat rheumatoid arthritis, inflammatory bowel disease (IBD), asthma, allergies, and many other conditions.
These drugs also help suppress the immune system to prevent organ rejection in transplant recipients. Corticosteroids also treat Addison's disease, a relatively rare condition in which the adrenal glands can't produce even the minimum amount of corticosteroids the body needs. Steroids are chemicals, often hormones, that the body produces naturally. They help organs, tissues, and cells do their jobs.
It takes a healthy balance of them to grow and even to have babies. Steroids can also refer to medications made by man. The two main types are corticosteroids and anabolic-androgenic (or anabolic for short) steroids. Steroids (sometimes called “roids” or “juice”) are the same as or similar to certain hormones in the body.
The body naturally produces steroids to support functions such as combating stress and promoting growth and development. Steroid medications, such as prednisone, work by decreasing the activity of the immune system. The immune system is the body's defense system. Steroids work by delaying the body's response to illness or injury.
Prednisone can help reduce certain symptoms related to the immune system, such as inflammation and swelling. You may have heard of anabolic steroids, which can have harmful effects. But there is another type of steroid, sometimes called a corticosteroid, that treats a variety of problems. These steroids are similar to the hormones produced by the adrenal glands to combat stress associated with illness and injury.
They reduce inflammation and affect the immune system. Some athletes take steroids in the hope of improving their ability to run faster, hit farther, lift heavier weights, jump higher, or have more endurance. In the United States, it is illegal to use anabolic steroids without a prescription.