Stress is a normal part of how our bodies function, as it is a response mechanism to physical and mental challenges. Stress can be helpful in adjusting your body to experiencing new things, and even help you stay alert and motivated. How your body reacts to stressful situations is determined by your autonomic nervous system (heart rate, breathing, vision changes) and it starts with your hypothalamus. This is a part of your brain that sends signals throughout your nervous system and your kidneys in times of stress, which then produces hormones like adrenaline and cortisol.
Chronic stress, on the other hand, leads to physical and mental wear and tear, which can lead to a number of different problems, as well as symptoms like rising blood pressure, overheating, digestive issues, and mood changes. There are a number of ways to treat the effects of chronic stress, but few methods are as comprehensive to your whole body’s health as functional medicine. To explore stress and the benefits of functional medicine, let’s look at common causes of stress, what it does to your body, how functional medicine helps, and what the treatment will be like.
If you live in the Houston or Spring, Texas, areas and you’re looking for a complete solution to treating stress and other problems, Drs. Billy Cheong, Kesia Broome, Elias Madrid, and the skilled team at Elite Spine and Health Center are here to help.
Causes of stress and their effect on your body
Chronic stress can be triggered by repetitive events over time, such as a heavy workload at work, feeling overwhelmed by responsibilities, working long hours, and dangerous work conditions. Life events like divorce, emotional problems, loss of work, and traumatic events also create stress that can lead to physical symptoms and conditions.
Symptoms include headaches, fatigue, sleeping problems, digestive issues, problems focusing, irritability, and conditions stemming from stress can include depression, hypertension, cardiovascular problems, heartburn, ulcers, and weight changes.
How functional medicine helps
Functional medicine takes an individualized approach to treating stress. Everyone has some stress, but they can come from different stimuli and take on many different forms for each person. So using this approach helps you by examining many factors, such as genetic indicators of stress, lifestyle choices, and diet to get to the heart of specific causes of stress and how best to manage them.
What to expect during this treatment
Treating stress means looking at both the things that are causing stress, and how we deal with it, whether we realize we’re doing it or not. Overeating foods that are bad for you to compensate for stresses from work or personal issues for example. To help with different forms of stress and get to their root, we start the process by looking at your medical records, and look at your current health. We examine your exercise regimen, lifestyle habits (eating, physical activity, whether or not you drink alcohol and how much), and conduct physical tests and lab work to help get a better picture of your overall health.
From there we can make proper recommendations about how to proceed and get you on a path to living with much less stress. Together, we can formulate a plan that is customized to your needs and gives you a healthier life.
Stress can affect you in a multitude of ways, but you don’t have to live with it because we can help. Make an appointment with Drs. Cheong, Broome, Madrid and Elite Spine and Health Center today, to live life with less stress.