what is stress?
The stress response is your body’s way of protecting you. When working properly, the stress response helps you stay focused, energetic and alert in an emergency.
When under stress, your system responds by releasing a flood of hormones such as Adrenaline and Cortisol. These hormones rouse the body for emergency action by increasing the heart rate, which in turn circulates more blood to the muscles, brain and lungs. This ‘fight or flight’ response is what is needed if we are faced with a physical threat and we need to react quickly (such as running away from an attacker).
Most stress today is caused by psychological stimuli rather than physical danger. The body cannot distinguish between physical and psychological threat, and reacts to both situations in the same way. In this situation, stress stops being helpful and prolonged periods of stress (chronic) can have adverse effects on your health.
Reflexology can help with reducing the effect stress has on you by putting the body in a state of complete relaxation. In this state muscular tension is released, nerve function improved, blood and lymph circulate freely and overall health and wellbeing improve. Sleep improves with treatment, and the whole ‘fight or flight’ stress response is calmed.
A session would be focused on stimulating points which correspond to affected areas in your body. For instance, your adrenal glands secrete hormones which regulate your stress response; when they get heavily relied upon during prolonged stressful times, they can get exhausted and bring extreme tiredness. Stimulating these points can be a great way to help rest the glands and restore balance.
what can stress feel like?
General aches and pains; muscle tension; frequent colds; lack of energy; rapid heartbeat; lack of libido; constipation or diarrhoea.
Isolating yourself; procrastination or neglecting responsibilities; insomnia or hypersomnia; eating less or more food; using alcohol, cigarettes or drugs to cope; clenched jaw.
Difficulty concentrating; constant worrying; feeling fearful or on edge and perceiving things as mostly negative.
Irritability; feeling overwhelmed; sense or loneliness; lack of sense of humour; crying; moodiness.