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The Impact of Chronic Stress and How to Fix It

chronic stress

Believe it or not, stress can actually be a good thing. If a lion were chasing you, an increase in your heart rate, muscles tension and focus would hopefully help you escape unharmed!

Thankfully, we don’t need to worry about being chased by a lion today. It might be someone cutting you off on the way to go holiday shopping that could put your body into the same fight or flight mode. Remember the last time you saw a car veering into your lane, did your heat rate go through the roof? That is an acute stress response in action.

Your brain and body respond to negative stress whether real or imagined, and chronic stress can have a profound impact on your health.

The Impact

Remember, in the short term, acute stress can be a good thing. It helps us react quickly. Your brain tells your adrenal glands to release hormones (chemicals) that help your body respond in an instant.

If, however, that stress continues past the event, you may slip into chronic stress mode. This can wreak havoc on your brain and body.

What’s more, the symptoms of chronic pain and chronic stress overlap and often feed into each other.

Did you know:

  • Chronic stress can lead to anxiety, depression, headaches, sleep problems, and potentially more
  • Stress, pain and inflammation are all connected by the stress hormone cortisol

Studies have proven that chronic stress affects both your brain and body in various ways. Identifying its presence early is a key way to maintain your good health. Early signs of chronic stress include sleeplessness, headaches, muscles tension, and joint pain.

The Fix

When your body is in a constant state of stress, it produces hormones that can disrupt almost all of your body’s natural processes.

Thankfully, emerging research has shown that chiropractic care, specifically spinal adjustments, may help to decrease your body’s overall stress level.

Here are just 3 ways chiropractic adjustments can help you reduce stress:

  • Reducing Muscle Tension: Reducing any built-up tension in your muscles can help sooth a tired body and mind.
  • Restoring Movement: Gentles adjustments to the body can help you move your back, arms and legs more freely with less pain.
  • Offering Personalized Exercises: Daily exercises are a powerful way to turn the dial down on that mental stress and up on your overall physical wellbeing.

Next Steps

Even people who are never stressed out often start to notice an uptick in headaches, muscle tension and difficulty sleeping during the holiday season.

Let’s work together to keep that stress from becoming chronic and making sure you can enjoy the holidays. We hope you’ll utilize the resources we have available for you. Our team is here for you!

Resources

If you’re looking for more, we offer a free library of rehab exercises that reduce tension in your muscles and relieve pain in any area of your body. Download our app today for free and get access along with other valuable information on supplements, training and more!

Our clinics are located in 4 convenient locations around the DMV area. If you are experiencing pain, stress or tightness in your body don’t hesitate to give us a call or schedule an appointment online today!

Sources:

Stress Management. Mayo Clinic. 2020.

Chronic Stress, Cortisol Dysfunction, and Pain: Stress Management. Physical Therapy. 2014.

Reduction of Cortisol Levels in a Patient Undergoing Chiropractic Management. JCC. 2020.

Neurophysiological Effects of Spinal Manipulation. The Spine Journal. 2002.