Stress comes in many forms. It can be emotional. It can make you feel anxious, worried or fearful. Stress can also be chemical. Many Americans deal with chemically induced physiological stress by taking drugs or alcohol. And, stress can be physical. It can cause muscle tension, neck pain, backaches, stomach ulcers and heart attacks. No matter how it enters our lives, stress has the ability to lower your body’s immune system and put you on an unhealthy path.
The most common symptoms of stress include headaches, fatigue, neck pain, shoulder or lower back pain, irritability, digestive problems and sleeping problems to name a few. In fact, many people misinterpret stress for a chronic disease or illness. This can be a constant battle. I help many patients understand the stressors in their lives and work with them to reduce the effects of those stresses on their body. Here are some of the key tips I often discuss with my patients to help them manage their stress:
- Take time each night to organize what you need to do the next day. It helps you to plot out what needs to get done and to plan your time accordingly.
- Stays focused on tasks and go through your day addressing items of priority first. Tackling one task at a time helps you feel a sense of accomplishment.
- Know your “hot buttons” or what causes you to feel “stressed”. Often, we cannot avoid them but learn to manage them and see them in a different light.
The negative effect of stress on your body is real. You need to arm yourself with the proper tools to keep them in control. What are the tools you can use?
- Regular chiropractic adjustments restore motion to the spine, allowing the vertebrae the space needed for your nerves to flow properly. In addition, chiropractic adjustments have a direct effect on the sympathetic and parasympathetic systems and can explain the improvements in respiratory function, digestion, and blood pressure levels in patients.
- Practice relaxed breathing at least twice a day, every day and whenever you feel tense.
- Listen to soothing sounds. It allows you to take a mental vacation 10 minutes a day.
- Exercise! Exercise is a great way to deal with stress and help you to relieve pent-up energy and tension.
Consistent stress causes more damage than you might think. Exercise, get your regular chiropractic adjustment and take a deep breath!