As a practicing chiropractor in Canada and Australia for a good part of my life I cared for thousands of patients who presented with low back pain, neck pain, and headache. In many instances these presenting patients pain was stress-related. For most of these patients, their problems were chronic and they had been putting up with their untreated stressed out bodies for a long time. The time frame was 30 or 40 years sometimes before their bodies finally quit. The underlying stress in these patients lives had taken a toll on not only on their physical body, but also on their mental, emotional and spiritual well being.

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It’s no surprise that pain causes stress. However, the opposite is also true.Constant stress in your life can lead to the release of inflammatory chemicals in the body that can ultimately lead to pain.These potent chemicals can exaggerate the way we experience a painful condition.

This is where emotional resilience plays a very important role in enhancing your recovery. Resilience supporting activities can assist you find comfort physically, mentally and emotionally in your life.

These four resilience strategies will support you in handling the pain of stress:

  1. Check out your habits

It has been said that confront is a necessary conversation. Instead of confronting a very stressful situation or a person who is making our life hell, we move to avoidance behaviour as a way to try to cope with the pain of stress. However, it’s important to face your stress head on so you can ultimately reduce the pain.

Also ask yourself…Have I been drinking too much alcohol? Have I been getting 7 to 8 hours sleep a night? Have I been eating too much sugar or drinking too much coffee? What tends to make me feel worse or better? Taking a closer look at your habits is often a key to uncovering the source of you pain and easing it.

  1. See a Chiropractor, or get a Massage

When you’re stressed your body tenses up. Your jaw tightens, shoulders tighten, your breath becomes shallower, your muscles stiffen. Your internal dialogue or ‘psycho-babble’ starts to take over and conjures up all sorts of negative situations and you in turn become even more tense. These negative thoughts create fear which triggers stress hormones to be released into your system, which can raise your heart rate, increase blood pressure, impact your memory, and cause weight gain.

Start to breath low and slow into your belly. Breath in through your nose for the count 6and out your mouth for the count of 6. Take a moment out for yourself and repeat 3 times. Shift your thoughts to something positive? It’s easier to deal with the source of your stress with a calm mind and relaxed body.

The next thing is…book a chiropractic appointment and get a massage. The body needs support, correction and relaxation when you are stressed.

  1. Helping others makes you feel good

Studies have shown that doing good increases production of serotonin, a neurotransmitter that regulates our mood. Doing good raises our level of serotonin. Something as simple as giving everyone you interact with a smile, can reduce your stress and give you a good dose of happy hormones which are recognized ‘stress busters’.

  1. Ask for support

If your stress-related pain is affecting your daily life, step out of your comfort zone and ask others for support. Pain can be a very isolating experience and it’s far easier to handle when you are personally supported.

Your instinct might be to hide your struggle and go it alone, but now is the time to open up and be honest with friends and loved ones. Ask for help with the shopping, washing, ironing, vacuuming and being the family taxi driver.

Research has shown that one of the major underlying contributing causes of low back pain is a perceived lack of support.

If you would like to immerse yourself in two days of building emotional resilience, then join us in Brisbane on May 6 & 7 for the Build Emotional Resilience Training. We have a fantastic team of qualified Practitioners who will guide and mentor you through the processes. Plus, you’ll have lots of fun and go home relaxed and de-stressed and have an emotional resilience toolkit to support you.

To join us, register at

Comment ( 1 )

  • Marg Peck

    Thanks, John, After many years in Chiropractic practice I can totally agree. The effect of stress on physical health and wellbeing is profound.

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