There are many types of anxiety disorders that include panic disorder, obsessive compulsive disorder, post traumatic stress disorder, social anxiety disorder, specific phobias, and generalized anxiety disorder.

Anxiety is a normal human emotion that everyone experiences at times. Many people feel anxious, or nervous, when faced with a problem at work, before taking a test, or making an important decision. Anxiety disorders, however, are different. They can cause such distress that it interferes with a person's ability to lead a normal life.

Symptoms of an Anxiety Disorder:

Symptoms vary depending on the type of anxiety disorder, but general symptoms include:

  • Feelings of panic, fear, and uneasiness

  • Uncontrollable, obsessive thoughts
  • Repeated thoughts or flashbacks of traumatic experiences
  • Nightmares
  • Ritualistic behaviors, such as repeated hand washing
  • Problems sleeping
  • Cold or sweaty hands and/or feet
  • Shortness of breath
  • Palpitations
  • An inability to be still and calm
  • Dry mouth
  • Numbness or tingling in the hands or feet
  • Nausea
  • Muscle tension
  • Dizziness

Different Types of Stress

How Well do You Adapt to Stress? 

Not all stress is bad. A 20-minute workout for a fit and trim 65-year old is good stress. The same workout for an out-of-shape 35-year old would likely be bad stress!

Whether your body considers stress good or bad is largely a function of how well it can accommodate it. Ultimately, this capacity is based on the condition of your nervous system.

Stress is part of everyday living. In fact, a stress-free life would be boring! Life is enjoyable when we have ample resources to experience and overcome the stresses we face.

Physical Stress

A whiplash injury from a car accident is an obvious source of physical stress. As is repetitive motions, a slip and fall, lack of sleep or overdoing it in the garden. Early on, learning to walk, ride a bike and the birth process itself are sources of physical stress.

Chemical Stress

Common sources of chemical stress include poor nutrition, sugar, refined carbohydrates and unhealthy fats. Drugs, preservatives, tobacco, alcohol, vaccinations, pollen and a host of other substances also affect our nervous systems, muscle tone and our spine.

The problem isn’t the pollen or chemical. Because not everyone reacts. Symptoms can appear when you lose your ability to adapt. Chiropractic care has helped millions reduce or eliminate reactions to many types of chemical stress.

If you lack the reserves to adapt to stress in a healthy way, it takes a toll. If your body reacts by “tripping a circuit breaker,” causing vertebral subluxation, chiropractic care is likely to help.

How can stress affect my spine?

Think of your spinal cord as a guitar string. The greater the tension, the higher the note. Your nervous system has “tone” as well. With each stressor, your body tightens up, like bracing yourself for a tight curve on a roller coaster. The weakest joints of your spine are forced out of their normal position. Like the shrill notes from an over-tightened string, your body loses its capacity to respond to the full range of human experience. And ill health can result.

Treatment of Anxiety and Stress

Patients need to keep in mind that diet, lifestyle, even toxins stored in your body play in how your body reacts to stress.We will also look at the gut, how it absorbs nutrients. Other approaches might include mind body activity like yoga or meditation. Integrative approaches also involve looking at how acupuncture effects the hormonal system.

Studies have found that acupuncture can have "a very good effect" on depression. More research is done to study acupuncture and depression. The mechanism is thought to be regulating neural hormones like serotonin and norepinephrine, and specific acupuncture points have been found to have a dramatic effect in depression. When patients don't seem to benefit from other depression treatments, we will look at more holistic approach to their problem -- the integrative approach including acupuncture.

If you experience stress or anxiety and would like to take a natural approach to health, we can help. Our mississauga acupuncture clinic has an approach to better health.

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