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Feeling on edge lately?

August 2, 2018

Many of my patients report feeling stressed out and on edge recently. Our bodies react to stress in a number of ways. When we perceive stress our body releases hormones that cause our muscles to tense, digestion to slow down and our heart beats faster. This can come in handy when we are running from a T-Rex but may not be helpful when sitting in front of a computer. Furthermore, prolonged exposure to these stress hormones can contribute to a number of medical issues. Some issues that can be worsened by stress include: migraine headaches, tension headaches, irritable bowel syndrome, TMJ, anxiety, depression, acne and eczema to name a few. Fortunately, there are some things you can try to lower stress. Try these tips to reduce stress.

 

  1. Deep breathing can activate the parasympathetic nervous system. This is the part of the nervous system is active when we are calm and at peace. A simple breathing exercise is the 4-7-8 breath. You breathe in through your nose till the count of 4. Then hold your breath till a count of 7. Next breathe out through you mouth with a whoosh or HAAA sound on 8. Repeat at least 5 times. Here is a video of the 4-7-8 breath: https://www.drweil.com/videos-features/videos/breathing-exercises-4-7-8-breath/

  2. Exercising 2-3 times a week can relieve stress by producing endorphins. Endorphins are chemicals/neurotransmitters that make us feel good and relaxed.

  3. Kava is my favorite herb for acute stress. I find the liquid version works more quickly that the pill form.

  4. Diffusing lavender essential oils or lavender room spays can be very calming. Also, taking lavender capsules can be as effective as certain medications for controlling stress.

  5. Getting out in nature has been shown to reduce stress. Being outdoors increases Vitamin D, lowers stress hormones, gives your brain time to recharge, boosts serotonin (from bacteria in dirt) and breathing oxygen improves your well being. Read this cool article: http://mentalfloss.com/article/60632/11-scientific-reasons-why-being-nature-relaxing

 

*this article is for informative purpose and is not intended to treat or diagnose any medical condition. Please seek out a medical professional for treatment of any medical issue*

 

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