Happy New Year! This is a time when many of us reflect on the past year and resolve to make changes or improvements in our life, health or circumstances. I, myself, focus on positive changes I can make in my own life throughout the year but also at this time.
Many of my patients tell me that they have felt more stress in 2020. Not surprising since we have all struggled with the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic as well as an election year and the challenges that both of these events bring to many.
So, what is stress? Stress can be a feeling of emotional or physical tension. It can come from any event or thought that makes you feel frustrated, angry, or nervous. Stress is your body’s reaction to a challenge or demand. In short bursts, stress can be positive, such as when it helps you avoid danger or meet a deadline. However, long-term chronic stress can have devasting effects on your health and well-being. The consistent and ongoing increase in heart rate, and the elevated levels of stress hormones and of blood pressure, can take a toll on the body.
Stress means different things to different people. What causes stress in one person may be of little concern to another. In my practice at Aspen Grey, I start by understanding what are the sources of stress for you. I recommend two very important tests that tell me if your stress hormones are elevated and how your body is responding to the stressor in your life by measuring your stress resistance. Both of these tests are non-invasive and are not typically used by traditional medicine. With this information, I can provide you with a specific and personalized treatment plan intended to improve your body’s response to stress.
The good news is that with proper treatment and strategies, your body can heal itself. I strongly endorse strategies that will help you manage your stress such as exercise, mediation, plenty of restful sleep, making time for hobbies and things that interest you, eating nutritiously dense food and setting limits. My philosophy is that stress management might require a plethora of strategies and tools. As a functional medicine physician, I have a lot of tools to choose from as I create a plan for you.
Stress management is a good place to start as stress can impact so many areas of your health that keep you from feeling optimal. Give me a call at 316-655-7788 to discuss what I can do for you!