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If you think the chiropractor is a great idea for your sore back or even those nagging headaches, you’re right. But chiropractic care is an effective choice for more than just physical pain. As stress and anxiety statistic continue to soar, and prescription drug therapy for these mental health issues likewise peak, holistic approaches are being increasingly explored. And that includes chiropractic.

The Physical Fallout of Mental Health Issues

We’ve discussed the three categories of stress before. These include bodily stress, environmental stress and emotional stress. Each can be unique in their symptoms, but all three categories of stress can negatively impact the body.

  • Bodily stress can be created through insufficient sleep, injury, poor diet, or illness
  • Environmental stress is caused by pollution, sudden or sustained loud noise, and sometimes even world events like politics, war, and poverty
  • Emotional stress can arise through life events like moving, starting a new job or relationships

People respond to these stressors differently, but no matter how well you manage stress, it still has the potential to create negative, cumulative effects on both the mind and the body. Stress directly impacts the body’s central nervous system, so it’s not a matter of “toughing it out.” It’s not a personal failure to seek health for mental health issues, especially when they’re taking a physical toll.

When you experience any kind of stress, your heart rate and breathing increase and your senses likewise heighten. These physical reactions should recede when the sense of threat has passed. But for many us, that isn’t what happens. Emotional stress i has become a particularly chronic problem in our society, which means many of us are locked in a perpetual fight-or-flight mode. It’s an out-of-proportion response to things like work, relationships finances, traffic, negative media, and our busy daily lives. The result of this state for many are conditions like anxiety, irritability, pain and depression. But it gets worse.

There are physiological results as well, and they’re currently labeled as diseases that include:

  • Diabetes
  • Obesity
  • Hypertension (high blood pressure)
  • Hypercholesterolemia (high cholesterol)
  • Decreased immune function
  • Cancer

These are lifestyle diseases, and they all have an impact on spinal integrity, nervous system function and our health as a whole.

Tips for Managing Stress & Anxiety

Stress causes pain, which causes more stress, and that cycle can be difficult to break. Worse, it can snowball to the point that you feel too overwhelmed to enjoy activities that used to bring you pleasure – the same activities that also tend to help alleviate stress. That’s where chiropractic care comes in.

Regular treatments can help decrease physical pain and promote muscle relaxation. This sends signals to the brain to induce relaxation across the body while also working to help regulate mood. This kind of relaxed state, along with a reduction pain, can help improve quality of life.

Chiropractic care is a holistic approach to wellness. The goal is returning the body to its natural, healthy state, with optimal function in the spine and joints. It’s a form of treatment that brings many benefits – better sleep, improved energy and health, things that help improve quality of life for a positive impact on your mental health.

If stress and anxiety are interfering in your life, learn more about what you can expect at your first chiropractic visit and schedule an appointment with Dr. McSweeney today.