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Chartered Physiotherapy and Clinical Pilates

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mental wellbeing

Exercise & Mental Health

India-wMy names India and I am a new Sports Therapist working at Emma James Physiotherapy. Today I will be talking about exercise and mental health, but more specifically how outdoor water sports may be exactly what you need to try!

The benefits of canoeing, kayaking and white water rafting on mental health have long been a reason why many people take up the sport. The ability to get out on the water for a relaxing paddle, or run river rapids after a stressful day, provides many people with an escape from every day life. Exercising on or near water and greenery has been shown to reduce depression and anger, as well as improve confidence. Water sports can also introduce variety into your life, there’s so many places you can paddle and soak up that vitamin D!

india-representing-englandFor the past 6 years I have been representing Great Britain in white water rafting. As an athlete juggling A-Levels and a 4-year degree, training allowed me to de-stress from a busy day of dissertation writing and clear my mind. There is nothing better than a sweaty lactic run on your lunch break to get the endorphins flowing before returning to the desk!

Can exercise help to relieve symptoms of depression and anxiety?

Recent studies have shown that exercise can treat mild to moderate depression as effectively as antidepressant medication. As one example, a recent study done by the Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health found that running for 15 minutes a day or walking for an hour reduces the risk of major depression by 26%.

Exercise is a natural and effective anti-anxiety treatment. It relieves tension and stress, boosts physical and mental energy, and enhances well-being through the release of endorphins.

‘Teamwork makes the dream work’

I am a strong believer that exercising in groups can increase commitment to a fitness routine, enhance consistency, duration and motivate individuals to achieve their goals. As well as offering classes at our Hemel Hempstead Clinic, at the FCO, DFID and Hanslope Park we offer lunch time fitness classes, pushing you to your limits before heading back to work, so why don’t you come along and give it a try! You can form new social groups with people who have similar interests. Building new social groups is never a negative! More people to talk to, interact with and learn from whilst keeping fit at the same time… bonus!

‘You can achieve anything you set your mind to’

india-waylandI hope you liked my first post, Ill be writing again soon 🙂

India
x

Blog Post by India
Sports Therapist at Emma James Physio

Work related stress & how to manage it

Up to half a million people in the UK experience work-related stress every year, which often results in illness (Health and Safety Executive 2011).

The signs of stress can vary from one individual to the next (NHS Choices 2011). They may manifest physically as an illness, tiredness or lethargy or as symptoms such as sore, tight muscles or erratic sleep patterns. Mental stress can result in depression, mood swings, anger, frustration, confusion, paranoid behaviour, jealousy or withdrawal.
Treatments include medication such as anti-anxiety drugs, cognitive behavioural therapy, relaxation techniques (NHS Choices 2011), acupuncture and floatation therapy.

How acupuncture can help

Stress is a common complaint cited by acupuncture and these individuals present with a variety of symptoms. Can acupuncture help with stress and anxiety? Let’s look at the research…..

One small randomised controlled trial (RCT) suggested that acupuncture might be successful in treating the symptoms of chronic stress (Huang 2011). Another study which looked at healthy individuals subjected to stress testing found acupuncture at an acupuncture point used for stress was more effective than a ‘control’ point (Fassoulaki 2003). A study by Pavao (2011) found acupuncture might be effective in attenuating psychological distress, as well as increasing cellular immunity. acupunctureIn a small pilot study, the use of one particular acupuncture point led to marked reductions in stress (Chan 2002).

Acupuncture is proposed to have many effects, including stimulating the nervous system and causing the release of neurochemical messenger molecules. The resulting biochemical changes influence the body’s homeostatic (state of equilibrium) mechanisms, thus promoting physical and emotional well-being.

Floatation Therapy

In addition to acupuncture, another alternative treatment for stress and anxiety is floatation therapy. During a floatation session you effortlessly float in an Epsom-salt solution. The solution is heated and maintained at skin temperature (37°C) and the environment in the tank is controlled so that the air is also skin temperature.

floatation-therapy
This creates an environment similar to that of the Dead Sea (but nearer to home!) which lets you float effortlessly on the surface of the solution, enjoying a feeling of total  freedom & complete weightlessness!

Preliminary research has shown that floatation therapy may lower stress, anxiety and even depression by reducing how much sensory input the brain and nervous system receive (Feinstein, 2018).

At Emma James we have our own Floatation Tank. Please just call us if you would like any more information on how this, or acupuncture, could help you.

lisa

Lisa
x

Blog post by Lisa
Senior Physiotherapist
MSc MACP MHCPC MCSP 

Emma James Physio

Looking after your mental health

MENTAL HEALTH AWARENESS WEEK 13- 19TH MAY 2019

Mental health in numbers….

1 in 6 adults will have experienced a common mental health disorder in the last week.
Severe mental health illnesss affects about half a million adults in England and these individuals will have a life expectancy of up to 20 years shorter than the general population. (Public Health England).

improving mental health with exercise

Pain can limit a person’s ability to exercise. The loss of exercise as part of a person’s mental wellbeing can be devastating- benefits of exercise include stress relief, positive affect on body image, improved mood, improved sleep and increased confidence.

Come and see our team of experts at Emma James Physio to help diagnose, treat and manage your pain, to get you back to exercising for your mental and physical wellbeing.

lisa

Lisa
x

Blog post by Lisa
Senior Physiotherapist
Emma James Physio

 

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