14th – 20th May is Mental Health Awareness Week as part of this we wanted to highlight the impact stress has on the physical body as we see it daily in clinic.
*When we are stressed or anxious our body goes into ‘fight or flight’ mode to help protect us from perceived harm. The constant adrenalin and cortisol this state induces is harmful over an elongated period. The cortisol suppresses the immune system. The adrenalin and noradrenalin can increase heart and lung action, slow digestion, cause loss of hearing, tunnel vision, shaking and flushing. We get an intensity of emotion so anxiety or aggression increase. Muscle tension is increased ready for action but over a long period of time this leads to pain.
*Due to this we become hypersensitive to pain, old injuries and issues reappear, neck pain and headaches are common, we have widespread musculoskeletal aches and pains, we stop breathing correctly, our bodies don’t perform properly, and we lose the ability to think clearly, sleep or function normally. This can lead to panic attacks, dizzy spells, no appetite.
*You can help yourself by taking a minute to breath, deeply, into your diaphragm, relax those shoulders, breath in through your nose for a count of 3 to start with and out through your mouth for 6. Slow and steady. Empty your lungs completely. This helps lower the threat level on your body, the fight or flight mechanism can calm and stop sending out the adrenalin. The body needs to feel safe to help you heal and repair.
*We can help you with treatments such as a Relaxation Massage, Reiki and Medical Acupuncture
*If you would like to discuss this issue or anything else you may have going on we are here, even if its just for a chat and a cuppa.
Written by Emma Harkin-Jones