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Stress. Ugh. It’s such an ugly word.

It’s that psychological cowlick you can never get rid of.

However, you can actually learn to control it.

Not by drinking your brain into oblivion, or numbing your brain with drugs, but by simply teaching your body how to cope. First of all, let’s actually talk about what stress can do to your body. It’s a myriad of joyous things. Stress can raise your blood pressure, weaken your immune system, ruin your sleep, cause weight gain, effect your sex drive (we don’t want that), stress can literally hurt your heart.

Now, with all of that being said, stress can also benefit your body.

How?
Well, remember how I said stress could affect your immune system (I say this simply because
bad stress can affect your memory), well stress can in fact BOOST your immune system…in the short term.

When you are in an short term stressful situation your body will produce chemicals that can
produce a temporary defensive boost. It can produce a “massive mobilization” of several types of immune cells in the bloodstream. Remember, this is a about balance.

Stress can also help to boost your brainpower. You become super thinker. This is in low level stress. Those lovely little brain chemicals called neurotrophins are produced and strengthen the connection between the neurons in your brain. Think of how you feel after a good workout.

That’s the brain boost I’m referring to.

Stress can also make you more resilient. It’s a great teacher, if you’re willing to learn. Stress can teach you how to manage future situations, creating almost a pavlovian response in your brain. Think of how a Navy SEAL is trained. They’ve learned how to teach individuals how to cope and adapt to the stress they are placed under. Repeated exposure to stress teaches both a physical and psychological sense of control. Stops you from shutting down in times of increased stress.

Success is another benefit, however this is also where some exposure and training comes into play. Learning to view a stressful situation as a challenge that you can meet, rather than something that is impossible or overwhelming.

Stress can be stressful to simply talk about!

You will never be able to rid your life of stress, but you absolutely CAN learn to control your responses to it. There is a key for that lock. Two subjects, of many, that I am passionate about. Massage Therapy and Floatation Therapy. Lets talk about massages.

Massage therapy has been around for a very long time. It’s not the fluff and tickle massage that I’m referring to. I’m talking about the “let’s get in there and fix it” kind of massage.

Massage therapy can have a direct effect on how your brain functions. Crazy isn’t’ it! Massage can stimulate the brain function, reduce depression, and combat stress levels. It’s the power of touch. Oxytocin levels rise, heart rate drops, and our sense of trust and confidence increases, with human touch. This is all happening in your brain. How does deep tissue massage play into this? Well it’s been well documented that deep tissue massage can actually stimulate receptors in the different areas of the brain. A well trained therapist, having to go deeper into the layers of soft tissue, creates stronger connections the brain.

When the brain receives the message from the muscles, neurotransmitters and proteins are released which benefit the endocrine, nervous and immune systems. Massage has the opposite effects on cortisol, serotonin and dopamine levels in your body, but it decreases frontal right lobe activity in the brain and increases the activity in the left lobe.This is a very good thing. When clients exit a treatment, we sometimes refer to them as being “massage drunk”. Again, this is a very, very, good thing. It means that you’ve allowed your body and brain to rest, which again helps you learn to control your stress levels. Both in a physical way, and physiological.

Sometimes as adults we need to simply remember to tap into what being a kid was like. We intuitively knew when to let go. We knew that a hug from a loved one, calmed us. Our mothers stroking our heads evoked a stillness in our bodies. A nice warm snuggle not only felt good, but reduced our stress. We need to tap into this again. An easy way is to learn to take time out for ourselves, treating our bodies with respect and care. Massage therapy is a perfect stepping stone. We are caring as therapists, and always ready to help.

239-325-9410
www.naplesmassage.com
5926 Premier Way Unit 134, Naples FL 34109

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