Boost Happiness and Beat Stress

Let’s face it, stress has become a part of our daily lives and can’t be completely avoided. It is a normal reaction to perceived uncomfortable and difficult situations.

While stress can be useful at times, it is important to manage it well, particularly in the face of pain disorders. An inability to manage stress may be contributing to the level of pain being experienced, so at Medwest Health Care we will often ask questions regarding the level of stress our patients are experiencing and whether they feel that their pain is made worse when their stress levels are high.

All experiences of pain are individual and at Medwest Health Care our therapists are experts in understanding what experiences are contributing to presenting symptoms and how to integrate this into an individualised treatment approach.

Managing stress can be hard and may take time, especially if it has become a part of you and your pain journey. Luckily, everything is possible and with some basic start out strategies to combat stress, these simple tips can have a positive impact on stress and the negative influence that stress has on pain experiences.

Here are 7 great ways for you to get rid of stress and essentially boost your happiness!

Get Active

Physical exercise is one of the best ways to alleviate stress and enhance your mood. At Medwest Health Care we understand the impact that pain can have on your mood and how frustrating it can be when an injury is determining your ability to exercise or even go through the basic activities of daily living.

During physical exercises, our brains produce and release chemicals dopamine and serotonin at a faster rate than during inactivity. Thanks to them, happiness and good mood are encouraged. Also, physical activity increases the supply of endorphins. These chemicals are responsible for encouraging a feeling of satisfaction and gratefulness.

Physical exercising has also been proven to lower stress hormones such as cortisol, which is responsible for increasing levels of anxiety and has a negative impact on pain perception. Therefore simple targeted exercise can allow us to think in a more positive way and have more focus and cognitive awareness.

Rest Up

This one may appear quite simple, however sleep hygiene is rather complex. Basically however, if you don’t sleep enough, you will be more prone to stress, negativity and higher levels of pain.

Make sure that you get sufficient sleep during the night, and enough rest during the day.

Consider listening to relaxing music, turn off all gadgets 60 minutes prior to sleep, try relaxing tea such as Camomile and add a few drops of lavender oil to your diffuser.

Sleep posture may be contributing to your sleep difficulties, so our physiotherapists are able to analyse and then optimise your sleeping neck and spinal postures to help you get the best night’s sleep possible. We also use a wide range of relaxation, sleep optimisation strategies to facilitate best sleep hygiene options.

Put The Good Things In

Eating and drinking healthy is a key to a healthy body and mind, and ultimately your happiness. There are foods and drinks that you should try to avoid as much as possible, including coffee and other drinks containing high levels of caffeine, alcohol, sugar, processed foods and salt.

A proper diet is a must if you aim to combat stress in the long term. Make sure that your body receives sufficient amount of proteins, good fats, healthy carbs, minerals, and vitamins.

Take A Break

Excessive stress is often caused because of too much worrying, overwork, overcommitting both personally or professionally and a physical injury can exacerbate this dramatically.

Try to reserve some time for yourself on a daily basis, seriously getting a little selfish can have huge benefits to you as an individual!

Our physiotherapists can give individual programs that may need to include relaxation strategies integrated into movement based programs.

Be Open

We know that talking about your problems can help you deal with them better. Make sure that you surround yourself with positive people who are willing to listen and understand you. Avoid the company that makes you feel worse.

Our Physiotherapists take the time to listen and understand what you are dealing with and the impact that pain or disability has had on your life. Talking through your issues can help stop the building up of anxiety, stress and quite simply feeling overwhelmed.

So the next time you feel stress creeping up on you, take a break and take your time :)