Stress is something we all have to deal with at some time in our lives. It is not always a bad thing. Certain amount of ‘stress’ is needed to actually ‘move’ us along. However excessive stress over long periods is always detrimental and many of us now live in that state.
The body always tries to tell us when it is stressed, but how many of us actually listen or even recognise the signs.
The signs are the little things such as:
– Not sleeping as well as you used to. This could be due to many things such as the mind working over- time, worrying, or to pain, muscle tension or to spinal misalignments. These are all stresses to the body.
– Feeling overly tired, lacking normal energy. Often this is the first signal that the body is fighting off an infection. It needs to rest. Do this and you will be fine. Ignore the signal and there is a strong chance that you will be ill for days!
– Anxiety, mood swings, depression.
– Poor memory.
– Muscular tension
– Drinking more alcohol than usual – maybe you think it helps you sleep!
– Smoking more than usual – maybe you think it helps you relax!
– Your blood pressure starting to rise. You may not even be aware of this one. But what about that mild feeling of pressure in the head, the feeling of a strangely tight chest, a pulse that feels a bit fast at times. These do not happen for no reason, the body is showing signs of stress.
– Your ‘diet’ going out the window, or loss of appetite. You may be a person who eats excessively whenstressed or you may be a person who forgets to eat. Either way it is not good and will ultimately affect your body in a detrimental fashion. You may gain weight, lose weight or end up
– Drinking more coffee than usual or actually surviving on coffee!
– The bowel not behaving as regularly as it used to, becoming erratic, loose, constipated, bloated.
– Your hair starting to fall excessively.
– Constantly having small accidents. Silly things like bumping into door frames, tripping on steps, hitting your head on the car hatch….not major …..but the next one might be. Slow down, take stock.
These are all signs that something is amiss.
Nothing of course is as good as getting rid of the source of the stress, or even just getting some time away from the stress helps, but as we all know it’s not always as easy as that.
Things don’t just GO AWAY and if you GO AWAY then you generally have to come
So a question I am asked very, very frequently is HOW TO COPE.
The following are some methods of treatment I have found to work well. Of course not everything works perfectly for everybody, we are all different and so are the life’s stresses that we are coping with.
– Take time out to go and exercise. Make sure it is exercise that you enjoy (No point in persevering with some activity if it is not enjoyable) and NOT to strenuous. This might sound strange to some but if the body is tired then IT IS TIRED. It does not need to
be made MORE TIRED!! Yoga can be great or even just a walk on the beach, or
through forest, or along a river.
– Get out and have a coffee (One organic coffee only or tea!) with a friend. (Even exercising is better with a friend, especially one that doesn’t mind if you ‘off load’!) Do it on a regular
– Take time out for yourself. This may mean off loading the kids somewhere else, but it’s better than being a snappy parent!
– Always make sure that you are taking plenty of B vitamins and minerals. Sometimes a simple Multi-vit will do the trick but at other times minerals have to be far more specific. As anyone who has visited this clinic will know my first recommendation is generally minerals!
–Get regular Massage, Reflexology or Osteopathic treatments that help balance the body. To do this regularly is important it is not sufficient to think of doing this once a year (or
– Buy a SPA!!
–Make sure you get sufficient sleep. This is so VERY important.
– Make sure the body gets sufficient minerals, especially Zinc and Magnesium.
– Supplement with B Complex.
– Use herbal remedies that help alleviate stress in the body.
The herbs Siberian Ginseng and Californian Poppy I recommend alot in stressful situations. Siberian Ginseng is an ‘adaptogen’ and appears to generally strengthen the body and help it to cope with stressful situations. It also appears to help strengthen the immune system. Panax Ginseng too can be useful.
It has been used for thousands of years for conditions for fatigue, mental stress, blood sugar regulation, improving libido and longevity.
Licorice is highly regarded in treating conditions associated with poor adrenal function. Be aware that the use of this herb may affect blood pressure.
Saint John’s Wort has long been used to reduce stress and depression. The best way I can describe the effect of this herb is that it ‘takes the bumps out of life’. It does not give a huge lift as some people seem to expect, but does definitely help people cope far better with the day to day stresses of life.
Evening primrose Oil also can be extremely useful in stressful situations. The effect of this herb is slightly different. It is better used in cases of emotional anxiety. Hence its popularity for use with PMS!
Go to on-line shop for Magnesium Glycinate or organic Evening Primrose Oil.
Sometimes other herbs can be added such as Passiflora, Valerian, Kava, Lemon verbena, Hops etc depending on the circumstance.
Bacopa (known as ‘brahmi’ in India) has long been used for improving memory and cognitive function but I personally have always recommended it when people are very run down and tired.
Also, Withania a type of Ginseng, I have also often recommended this herb when people are tired, run down and when the thyroid appears to be implicated.
More recently both Rhodiola rosea root and Rehmannia Root have become popular to improve resistance to a variety of stressors.
Go to Contact us if you want any of these herbals.
– Bach Flower remedies can be extremely beneficial especially when the problems are of the mind. For example the mind dwelling on certain things or the mind just not settling down and forever ‘thinking’.
– Find music that makes you happy.
– Keep the company of healthy, happy people. Avoid those who pull you down.
Above all……Listen to the body. Take note of what it is telling you.
All the suggestions here can help.
Do not be too busy to listen….and act.
Now read this Poem – ‘Slow dance’. It’s beautiful.
This body is the only one you have. Look after it and it will look after you.
Up-dated Oct 2014