What to do about stress pain?
Pain is a common occurrence for many of us. Throughout the week, you may have experienced a headache, muscle tension, stiffness, fatigue, or an upset stomach. These symptoms may be a regular part of your life, and you may have come to accept that your body simply hurts. However, it doesn’t have to be that way.
Stress is a psychosocial malady that has taken the world by storm, causing physical symptoms such as headaches, chest and muscle pain, fatigue, nausea, and disrupted sleep. Our experiences with stress and what triggers it may differ, but we are all familiar with it, and it is just as taxing on the body as it is on the mind.
When not managed properly, stress can contribute to health problems. Such as high blood pressure, heart disease, obesity, and diabetes, as stated by the Mayo Clinic. Additionally, it can cause daily physical discomforts, including tense and sore back, stiff neck, chronic headaches, or nausea.
Fatigue occurs when stress is combined with poor sleep. Leading to headaches, dizziness, and a weakened immune system. This can make you more vulnerable to viruses that circulate in schools and workplaces during this time of year, ultimately leading to an unhappy body.
It may be easy to dismiss exercise as a solution when your body hurts. However, if stress is a mental, emotional, and physical condition, then the ultimate treatment should target all three areas.
What can you do?
Get moving! Movement can take many forms, such as walking, Pilates, yoga, or mountain biking. Scientific research shows that regular exercise can reduce stress and improve physical health. When it comes to stress, exercise can help to reduce the production of stress hormones, such as cortisol and adrenaline, while also promoting the release of endorphins, which are natural painkillers and mood boosters.
Even if stress-induced pain feels like a barrier to activity, physical therapy is an option. Physical therapy is not only for injury rehabilitation or athletes; it’s a chance for individuals to receive personalized guidance toward a healthier lifestyle.
At PhysioFit Physical Therapy and Wellness, we offer Discovery Sessions to help people figure out a plan to get them more active, healthy and mobile, and out of stress. If you want to learn more fill out this form and we’ll be in touch with you very soon.
ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Kim Gladfelter, MPT, OCS, FAAOMPT
Women's Health Physical Therapy Specialist at PhysioFit Physical Therapy & Wellness
Kim Gladfelter is a physical therapist, Pilates instructor, educator, author, and co-founder of PhysioFit Physical Therapy & Wellness. She is known as a keen, well-rounded expert of healing through movement and women’s health specialist in the Silicon Valley area.
Kim has helped men and women of all ages to stay active and feel their best. She also writes about managing pain in her health columns, blogs and the local Los Altos Town Crier newspaper as well as reaches out to the local community, support groups, schools, libraries, and sports centers to advise and educate on body awareness and therapeutic exercise.