Don’t get your tinsel in a tangle!
Today on the Dr. Oz show, the topic was stress and how it affects the body. He dubbed the phrase “Don’t get your tinsel in a tangle”. It’s a great way to remind ourselves how stress during the holiday season can affect our wellness. But I want to take it a step further. In this blog, I want to present the presence of stress and how it can affect our body, mind, our skin, and appearance. My hope is to educate my patients and inspire them to embrace the new year with less stress!
Stress On The Body & Mind
When we stress, the body activates the sympathetic nervous system. This causes our body to jerk into fight-or-flight mode. This activation can have damaging affects on the body’s mental state, outward appearance and overall well being. In addition to stress, depression and anxiety can be just as detrimental to the body and mind.
Our body’s reaction to stress isn’t always bad. When we are in a stressful situation, our pulse quickens, we breathe faster, our muscles tense, our brain uses more oxygen and increases activity. This is essential in a survival situation. But when we react this way to situations that don’t involve the need for survival or experiencing chronic stress, we affect the body negatively. Our immunity is lowered and our digestive, excretory, and reproductive systems stop working normally. Over time, continued strain on our body from routine stress may lead to serious health problems, such as heart disease, high blood pressure, diabetes, depression, anxiety disorder, and other illnesses.
Stress On Our Appearance
Unfortunately, our appearance is greatly affected by high levels of stress and chronic stress. Stress is a worsening factor for fever blisters, psoriasis, seborrheic dermatitis and has even been shown to impair skin barrier function and dehydrate the skin (WRINKLES…yuck!) allowing more irritants, allergens, and infectious agents to penetrate the skin and cause problems. Beyond the direct physiological effects of stress, we tend to neglect or abuse our skin. Under stress, we lack the energy and motivation to follow skin care regimens. There can also be signs of stress-related behaviors — such as scratching, pulling or rubbing — that can exacerbate problems.
Because there is a reciprocal relationship to appearance & feelings, the way we feel on the inside can directly affect the way we look on the outside. When we feel more attractive and more confident in our appearance, we tend to perform better in other areas of life — in our work, family life, social life, and marriage or personal relationships.
Untangle Your Tinsel
So, how can we reduce stress in our lives? If you are overwhelmed, feel you cannot cope, have suicidal thoughts, feel your wellness is compromised from stress, or are using drugs or alcohol to cope, please seek help from a qualified mental health care provider. To be proactive in taking practical steps to reduce stress, try to prioritize your load. Schedule regular times for healthy and relaxing activities. Exercise regularly-just 30 minutes per day of gentle walking can help boost mood and reduce stress. And avoid dwelling on problems…nothing is worth your health and appearance! And lastly, come to Timeless Rx and see me! Scheduling regular facials, skin rejuvenation treatments or home care regimes can improve your appearance resulting in a beautifully confident new you! And as a Licensed Esthetician, I not only treat your skin, as I find it therapeutic to my patients and myself to lend an ear while performing the skin care treatments. I truly enjoy developing relationships with my patients!
I hope you’ve enjoyed this information as well as solutions to the problem that stress plagues on our lives. So, DON’T GET YOUR TINSEL IN A TANGLE this holiday season. Instead, embrace the new year with a less stressed beautiful new you!