Most people begin to see a chiropractor to address a certain complaint. We often see people coming in with low back pain, tightness across the shoulders and pain between the shoulder blades, postural concerns including rounding or a ‘hump’ at the bottom of the neck, neck pain, headaches, and many, many more. As chiropractors, we assess you to determine where within your body the problem is coming from, and work on these areas to improve function. But what is happening within our body is only half the picture. Your chiropractor will also ask questions about your everyday activities as we are products of our environment, and our body is constantly responding to everything around us to keep us optimised for our daily lives.
Anything in our environment that causes a reaction in our body can be referred to as a stressor. An easy way to think of this is that our body responds to a hot environment by sweating to keep us cooler. This can be thought of as a stressor because sweating depletes the body of water and salts, and it takes energy to create a sweating response. If we sweat for too long, our body cannot regulate itself properly.
Other stressors on our body include:
As you can see from this list, our body is constantly adapting to the different stressors in our environment. This takes a lot of energy and effort, and sometimes, our bodies need to take a little shortcut. Our bodies are so good at adapting to change, that it will take the easiest option, even if this is not the best option for long term wellbeing. If we are sitting all day at our job, our body takes the easiest option and diverts energy, and therefore strength, away from our underused central postural support muscles, and places it into our brain and other structures that are using the energy more consistently. Short term, this is great, it uses the available energy efficiently. Long term, we are left with unsupportive core muscles that are more prone to allow injury when placed under load while exercising or moving. So, a short term solution that is not good in the long term.
When you visit a chiropractor, we support your body to heal and move well through a wide range of techniques. Unfortunately the stressors on your body are often working against us, creating stress and tension in your body and nervous system. This is why we offer small, easily implemented changes that you can make to keep your body moving and decrease stress on your system. Often these changes include:
When you visit a chiropractor, they can help your body to move and function better, often resulting in less pain and discomfort and more mobility. They can also help you to make changes to how you interact with your environment when working or playing so you can minimise how much this stress affects you going forward. However, you will still be subject to many of the same stressors as before you started care. We cannot avoid using computers or phones for our jobs (even with stretch breaks), we will still crave junk foods, and the kids will be as loud as ever.
While some stressors in our environment are unavoidable, with the right adaptations to your working environment, a few simple exercises and a well moving spine, most people can keep themselves functioning at a good level. Then they choose to come back for regular chiropractic visits to decrease the effects of these unavoidable stressors and maintain optimal function. They often feel they are better with regular chiropractic adjustments.
Is it time for you or someone you know to make some changes in your environment? You can book with our chiropractors now to discuss your situation and come up with a plan to help you function better.
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At Ballarat and District Chiropractic Center, we want you to be empowered when it comes your health. We want to help you by sharing all our knowledge about Chiropractic.