How Does Stress Affect Your Brain?
When you marvel over the wonders of the human body, the process of ADAPTATION is not to be overlooked. It’s amazing to understand that, in an ever-changing environment, our brain is able to communicate with our body in fascinating ways to sustain some sort of balance. This is evident in fighting foreign invaders that try to attack our cells; our brain signals the immune response to not only kill the invaders, but also prepare the body for another attack. Even with our food, which has changed greatly with our evolving culture, the brain is able to signal to the body what is considered waste to expel and what is considered essential nutrients to take in.
However, there are circumstances where the brain isn’t able to ADAPT to the changes in our internal and external environment. This then leads to dis-ease and makes us more vulnerable to attacks of illness and pain. Even worse is when the brain becomes tolerable of these negative circumstances and considers this to be the new normal for the body. An example of this is when the body adapts into new postures from prolonged sitting or deskwork. One HUGE, negative factor that affects the brain’s ability to adapt is STRESS.
When stress accumulates internally and externally, it has the capacity to alter the internal chemistry of the body. It does so by allowing an influx of stress hormones to overcome the body, such as adrenaline and cortisol. As levels of these hormones grow, it can have a direct impact on immune, digestive and reproductive function. Therefore, stress can have a huge, negative effect on not only adaptation, but in health as well.
One way the body adapts to stress is by causing subluxations (misalignments) in the spine. As an act of defense, the body gets into abnormal postures in stressful situations. As stress accumulates, these subluxations become the new “normal” for the body, and the stress hormones still flood the body. Knowing the negative impact that subluxations have on the nervous system (brain, spinal cord, nerves), we can now see that stress can have a detrimental effect on the function of the WHOLE body.
This is huge for Chiropractors, as we come to understand the effect that physical, mental or chemical stress can have on your posture, your pain and your function. The good news is RESEARCH has shown that chiropractic adjustments have are a huge benefit to this problem. It is evident that adjustments that correct spinal subluxations also signal the brain to reduce concentrations of stress hormones in the body. The adjustments make the brain believe that something good is happening to the body, so it lessens the need for stress hormones. So not only do they correct postural issues, but they improve overall health by reducing the stress response, and promoting true adaptation in the brain.
Stress can exist in many different forms, but what’s important is to understand the effect that it has on your body if you don’t know how to manage it, especially over a long period of time. A great solution is to speak to your Mississauga Chiropractor, not only about the pain and dis-ease that you’re experiencing, but to also express the stress that you deal with on a regular basis. By doing so, your Chiropractor will not only understand your symptoms, but can help you realize and educate you about the very root cause of your problems. STRESS is no friend to your brain; so don’t let it stop you from reaching your potential. If you’d like to talk to your Mississauga Chiropractor about this topic, contact us at (905)821-4951 to book an appointment today!