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Stress Less
By Peter Games, L. Ac.

Acupuncture for Stress Reduction in Boise IdahoAs I sit here typing away at my computer, I become increasingly aware of the deadline for finishing this article. Then for no apparent reason, my focus changes to the countless other tasks that need to get done this week. My list of things to do is growing by the minute. This is going to be a very busy week. Of course, next week will be just as busy, if not more so. How will it all get done? When will I get caught up?

What is causing stress in your life? If you are unable to think of an answer, you are one of the very few. Everyone has at one time or another experienced stress in the form of anxiety, fear, worry, anger, or a host of other emotions. We are a stressed society and that stress can affect us in a variety of different ways. Some experience difficulty sleeping or stomachaches, while others get headaches or back and neck tension. Our bodies respond in a rather complex way to stressful situations and ironically, this complex response can help to save our lives or it can severely damage our health, depending upon how often it takes place.

What is stress? Stress is an emotionally upsetting condition which occurs in response to external influences and it is capable of affecting physical or emotional health. Stress is what you feel when you are worried or uncomfortable about something. It can be caused by any perceived threat, including financial worries, relationships, health concerns, work situations, or any life challenges at all. Ultimately, stress arises from our struggle to survive and reproduce. The list of culprits is virtually endless.

Boise, Idaho Acupuncture Treatment for Headache Pain & StressThe way that the human body responds to stress has developed over the course of human evolution to help primitive man to deal with physical challenges. Thus, the stress response is designed to make the body ready for intense action, either combat or escape. This response, known as the fight-or-flight response, involves the production of stress hormones (cortisol, norepinephrine, and epinephrine – also called adrenaline) from the adrenal glands. When this happens, heart rate and blood pressure soar to get more blood to the brain, heart, and skeletal muscles, while blood is shunted away from the digestive tract. This provides for maximum alertness and increases physical strength or speed, but in the process also suppresses digestion. Blood sugar levels rise to supply more fuel for energy. Blood clotting occurs more quickly, preventing blood loss from cuts or internal bleeding. The brain shuts off sleep centers and turns wakefulness centers into high gear. Muscle tone and tension increase everywhere in the body and breathing rate increases.


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