In my last article I mentioned I had thought the costochandritis I had suffered with the past seven weeks was caused by stress. Stress can manifest into many physical signs and symptoms, so make sure you are listening to your body!Pretty much any physical symptom can be a sign of stress. Some of the more common stress symptoms are stomach pain, headaches, lack of sleep, over or under eating, anxiety, depression, and heavier alcohol consumption. But stress can also manifest in skin conditions and heavier panic attacks that send people to the hospital, thinking they are having a heart attack. Eventually stress can affect your immune system, so stop stressing already. Easier said than done!If you read my last article you may have made the decision it is time to work on controlling your stress. So what next, it’s time to track your stress and find out exactly what is stressing you the most. Here is where I tell you to keep a stress diary. If you have been following me and are keeping a food and activity log you can add stress to that one. The ideas is to write down everything that causes you a feeling of bad stress. The type of stress that makes you feel a little anxiety or overwhelmed to massively anxious or overwhelmed and then rate your stresses on a scale of 1 to 10. 1 being very little stress, 10 being, I just can’t take this anymore. From there you can start working on your biggest stressor first. Obviously, we will never have zero stress, some stress is actually good for you. Unfortunately today, most of us are carrying too much stress and it is causing us to lack energy, become sick, and not reach our life goals.Here is to managing your stress and reaching your health, weight loss and fitness goals. I know you can do it!
You’ve been diagnosed with cancer…Along with the medical issues and the pain and uncertainty of treatment, you find yourself facing serious emotional challenges…- Anxiety- Depression- Fear- Panic attacksAs a cancer patient undergoing treatment or as a post chemotherapy cancer patient, you have a lot to contend with.Many cancer treatment regimens specifically target the physical symptoms of cancer. The focus is on killing the cancer and making you well. It’s a purely biological and scientific focus.Yet more and more evidence is showing that it’s just as important to address your emotional and psychological issues as well.The next time you’re feeling stressed or anxious, pay attention to how your body reacts. Chances are, you tighten up. Your body becomes stiff and unyielding. Depression and anxiety brought on by not only a diagnosis of cancer but chemotherapy, radiation and/or surgery can target the weak areas of the spine. That can lead to migraines, headaches, muscular tension, and neck and back pain. Chronic pain can make your depression even worse.When you’re in constant pain from post chemotherapy neuropathy and other side effects from chemotherapy- Your social life suffers because you don’t want to get out and see people- Your level of physical activity nose dives because your body hurts- You begin to feel like your situation is hopelessAll of these things serve to make a bad situation worse.Yes, there are prescription medications available to treat depression and anxiety. But if you’ve had enough of swallowing pills in the hope of feeling better, you might want to consider chiropractic treatment to regain your balance, emotionally and physically.Why Manual Therapy?When you consider what your body has been through with chemotherapy, surgery, radiation or experimental treatments, it’s no wonder your joints ache and your spine is out of alignment.The pain you’re feeling can be caused abnormal motion or position of the joints. When your joints and/or spine moves out of position it creates pressure on your spinal nerves. That pressure impairs your nervous system and results in chronic pain.Your NeuropathyDR® Clinician will evaluate you to determine where this abnormal positioning is occurring in your body. Once the source is pinpointed, we’ll next manipulate or adjust your body manually to realign the spine. Once your spine and joints are properly aligned, it can reduce your pain and stress. Not to mention improving your mobility and range of motion. This is particularly important if you suffer from post chemotherapy peripheral neuropathy.How Does That Help With My Depression?Once you understand the link between chronic pain and depression, it makes it a bit easier to understand how chiropractics can help ease depression. You get the spine and joints back into proper alignment, the pressure is taken off the compromised nervous system, your pain diminishes and so does your depression.But chiropractic care for cancer patients goes beyond that. Your chiropractic practitioner can also use other techniques to help you relax and to treat your pain:- Massage- Stretching- Heat and/or Ice- Non force techniques- Electrical stimulation of the muscles, such as the use of the ReBuilder treatment protocolAny of these techniques can not only address any post chemotherapy peripheral neuropathy issues you may be dealing with, they can also help you relax. The benefit is three fold – you begin to repair damage to your body caused by chemotherapy and other cancer treatments, your pain is diminished and you learn to relax which can help lessen your depression.You’ve already come through the worst. You’ve faced down cancer. Now you can face down the depression, post chemotherapy peripheral neuropathy and the host of other debilitating side effects from your cancer treatment.