Adjust your Stress with Chiropractic Care
Have you ever been stressed? Now that’s a silly question: in our world today we are constantly triggered into stress whether it is due to deadlines, relationships, finances, or health. The ways people deal with this state of fear and anxiety are numerous and diverse, including exercise, a jaunt into nature, some mindless entertainment, or a good book. Have you considered what chiropractic has to offer in these times of tension?
Our bodies have two major systems that evolved for our survival: the fight-or-flight sympathetic system and the rest-and-digest parasympathetic system. They exist in a dynamic equilibrium to modulate body functions such as heart rate, blood flow, blood pressure, and muscle tension to correspond to the body’s needs at that moment. When we are in a state of anxiety, stress, and fear the sympathetic system dominates and increases blood pressure, heart rate, and muscle tension. When we are able to relax completely and find ourselves calm, the parasympathetic system has greater activity and leads to a decrease in tension, blood pressure, and heart rate.
Recall the last time you were stressed-out and clenching your jaw or noticing a tightness in your chest. What the mind and body is processing as stressful manifests in muscle activity that is quite involuntary, and leads to decreased or abnormal movement of the joints that these overactive muscles overlie. Interestingly, this is precisely what chiropractic adjustments are meant for! The adjustment affects the joints motion itself while stimulating relaxation of the associated muscles, thereby releasing overall tension from the body.
Furthermore, there is scientific evidence that shows chiropractic adjustment literally alters the parasympathetic/sympathetic system balance as determined through heart rate changes. It has been found that adjusting the spine – notably the neck and low back – have lowered fight-or-flight responses and raised the activity of the calming parasympathetic system!
With these profound effects of spinal manipulation on the body, consider consulting your chiropractor for assistance in managing stress.
Dr. Kelsey Horsting, DC