• The Link Between Body and Mind: Chiropractic Care for Anxiety and Depression

    by The LiveWell Chiropractic Team
    on Apr 27th, 2017

We live in a world that doesn’t make things easy on us. Everything seems to be moving faster than anyone can process. We’re always connected via social media. Never has there been more information available to us or more possibility. But, this world of fast paced business dealings, FaceTime calls with family halfway across the country, and work always being one ping in your inbox away has created an environment ripe for issues related to our mental health.

Issues like anxiety and depression are very common. Anxiety alone is the most common mental health issue in the United States, affecting over 40 million adults. That’s nearly a fifth of the adult population. Billions of dollars are spent every year trying to find relief from this all consuming illness. Depression, while not as prevalent, still affects about 15 million adults or 7 percent of the adult population. While not as prevalent as anxiety, depression is the leading cause of disability for adults in young adulthood to middle age.

It’s not a surprise that a lot of time, money, and energy is spent trying to alleviate the symptoms of these mental illnesses. What may surprise you is that the person you may want to call is actually your chiropractor. Yes, chiropractic care for anxiety as well as depression is available to help reduce troubling symptoms. If you’ve never considered chiropractic care for anxiety or depression, it’s time to explore the nature of these illnesses and the link between the mind and the body.

What causes anxiety and depression?

Anxiety and depression are complex conditions with no single identifiable cause. Rather, these illnesses develop as a result of many factors aligning to produce these feelings of hopelessness, agitation, and uncontrollable fear which lead to episodes of panic. Research has shown that there is a genetic component to these illnesses. If an immediate relative suffers, you’re at increased risk. But a great deal of what contributes to anxiety or depression is stress and difficult life circumstances. Traumatic events can trigger it. Another underlying medical condition may be the cause.

Emotions are a powerful thing. While there is a brain chemistry component to these conditions certainly, that’s only dealing with half the equation. Make no mistake. If you think you suffer from a mental illness, you should see a mental health professional. A therapist can provide you with behavioral tools to try and find relief. You may even opt for medication. Medication is controversial for some people because of the side effects and concerns about dependency. Discuss this with your doctor.

It’s important, however, not to ignore your body as you focus so much on the mind.

Greater insight into the mind and body connection

One of the great breakthroughs in the mind and body connection has been the research into Irritable Bowel Syndrome. IBS is a common digestive condition that often occurs alongside anxiety and sometimes depression. For many years, doctors treated IBS as they would any other digestive disorder with mixed results. If you live with IBS, you know how frustrating all of the testing and medication trials can be. But once they started treating IBS holistically, tending to both the body and mind, is when some real breakthroughs were made. By treating the mind with therapy, the IBS symptoms subsided as well.

Why wouldn’t it go the other way? The body and mind are not separate. The brain is an organ, after all. By treating both, you find relief. Anxiety and depression work similarly. If the body is getting the care it needs, the mind often follows.

How your chiropractor can help

Chiropractic care for depression and anxiety might be the missing piece of the puzzle you’ve been seeking. Think about the physical symptoms you experience beyond your thoughts. Tension headaches, stiff neck, back pain, and weakness are all common when it comes to mental afflictions. Chiropractic care (along with acupuncture) can be used to relieve these symptoms. Remember that the spine and neck are like the nerve highway of your body. When these components are aligned, it jump starts everything else.

By feeling relief in your body from the effects of stress and tension, your mind will follow suit. Anxiety and depression can often be “chicken or the egg” type situations. Receiving holistic treatment may be exactly what you need.

Conclusion

Anxiety and depression are tough to beat. While there is no real cure, they can absolutely be managed. It’s not unheard of to experience significant reduction in symptoms with the proper treatment. You may even go symptomless for extended periods of time. But, the only way to accomplish that is to start taking care of your body so your mind can flourish. Contact us today to schedule an appointment. The team at LiveWell Chiropractic is here to help you live your best life.

Author The LiveWell Chiropractic Team

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Oak Brook, IL 60523