By Dr. Sara Hart
The wild wind. Blustery season of weather change. From the blue sky bliss of the sun warming the earth switching to a torrential downpour in moments, it’s hard to know how to dress some days.
Sometimes an approaching storm feels like a lot more than just weather moving in. If the Lyons, Colorado 1,000 year flood scenes are in your personal
memory, your cells are going to respond differently to the sound of falling rain. If images like Dorothy in the Wizard of Oz mean anything personal to you, the breeze might rattle you a little more. If you’ve had traumatic experiences with natural disasters, the shifts and movements of the earth’s changing seasons bring up more than the promise of green grass tomorrow.
Our memory exists not in our brains but in our bodies. The mind might be where the senses replay the story of an event, but the body response precedes it activating physiologic change. The body tenses, the breathing quickens, the heart rate increases all to signals of stress.
Natural medicine tools:
• Rescue Remedy – this homeopathic medicinal blend is useful for helping a person shift out of the fight or flight response. It is gentle enough for infants and all ages.
• Passionflower tea – this wonderful herb is helpful for balancing neurotransmitters in the brain and creates a gentle calming effect on the body. It can help with sleep or just help take the edge off when feeling tense.
• Magnesium – this nutrient is significantly deficient in many people, even with healthy diets. Magnesium facilitates muscle relaxation and can help with chronic tension that the body holds.
• Sleep – our single most restorative activity, sleep helps the body and mind recover from stressful experiences. If you’re sleep is compromised, you’re more likely to experience elevated stress responses. Sometimes, it’s simply a matter of proper scheduling to allow for adequate sleep. However, if you have sleep issues like difficulty falling asleep or frequent waking, or feeling unrested upon waking in the morning, seek medical help.
• Acupuncture & bodywork – tools that directly influence the body’s processing of stress hormones are invaluable to health. The release of endorphins in a controlled environment allows for re-balancing of the nervous system and aiding a deeper state of relaxation as a baseline.
• Grounding – shifting the awareness from the head and the flurry of thoughts to the body changes our awareness and helps us to be more present to the reality of current circumstances. A daily practice of walking barefoot in the wet morning grass, shaking the body from head to toe and massaging the abdomen are all tools to cultivate presence in the body.
• Hydrotherapy – contrasting heat and cold to the body surface is a traditional technique for optimal health. For calming the stress response, relaxing in a warm bath or shower and intermittently shifting the temperature to cool water helps to regulate the nervous system.
One thing is certain, the storms are going to keep coming. Preparing ourselves mentally, physically and emotionally allows us to be in the best possible state to handle the ever changing environment.
At Stillwater Clinic, our purpose is to provide the community with resources for your whole health. Visit us online www.stillwaterhealingarts.com for more information and to schedule a visit today.