Whether from financial worry, grief or a heightened fear of the unknown, the coronavirus pandemic has affected us all with more stress than even a few months ago. Fortunately, a blend of chiropractic care and other relaxation techniques may help relieve the physical and mental effects of COVID-related stress on your mind and body.
Common Symptoms of Stress
As humans, we feel some form of stress everyday – it’s normal. This bodily response protects us from danger, both real and perceived. Situations like driving, school and work deadlines, and yes, a global pandemic can all cause you to feel threatened.
When your brain senses harm, it responds by signaling the endocrine system to release cortisol and adrenaline which initiates your “fight or flight” response. In turn, your muscles contract, your breath quickens and your heart rate increases. However, these hormone levels should fall once the situation resolves.
Unfortunately, ongoing situations like the pandemic make it hard for your body to stabilize, leading to chronic stress. You may not even notice that you are feeling anxious, but certain symptoms can signal that your body and mind are reacting to your circumstances:
- Muscle tension and pain
- Trouble sleeping
- Decreased immunity
- Shallow breathing
- Increased irritability
- Digestive issues
- Weight gain
- Heart troubles
Regardless of your specific symptoms, the effects of stress on the body can be detrimental to your health, increasing your risk for heart attack, stroke and diabetes.
Chiropractic Care for Chronic Stress
While it is inevitable to feel worried by the constant stream of news and developments, dealing with chronic stress will only worsen the situation in the long run. So, finding ways to relax is essential to your overall health.
Chiropractic care not only addresses the physical signs of anxiety like muscle tightness but may also soothe some of the mental symptoms in a few ways.
Physically relaxing the muscles
As mentioned, muscle contraction is one key part of the body’s stress response. However, in long-term cases, the muscles may not relax as they should which leads to tension and pain. This pain can make you more irritable, affect your posture, impact your sleep and more.
Your chiropractor will manipulate these areas of tension to relax your muscles and give your body a sense of relief.
Encouraging mental relaxation
When your body is in alignment, so follows your mind. By addressing your physical pain and making you more comfortable, chiropractic care may inadvertently make you happier and more at ease.
Improving your nervous system function
Subluxations, or misalignments in the spine, can negatively impact the way your brain communicates with the rest of your body. This affects the way you breathe, how quickly your body resolves the stress response and even your sleep patterns. Through spinal adjustments, your chiropractor can optimize your body’s functions, allowing you to feel more balanced and relaxed.
Additional ways to relieve stress:
Although chiropractic sessions can help you feel more relaxed in the days following your visit, you should continue to implement stress-relieving techniques. Here are a few additional activities to help you unwind:
- Yoga & meditation
- Breathing exercises
With everything happening around the world, it is easy to feel worried right now. But without a definitive solution on the horizon, it’s necessary to find a way to keep your stress levels at bay for the sake of your health. With help from us at Total Body Chiropractic & Massage, you can start feeling more relaxed as early as your first visit. And our team will also recommend ways to maintain a calm mental state when you’re not on the table. As always, we are committed to helping the community get through this pandemic in a healthy and safe way.