Well­ness Arti­cles

Aus­tralian Chi­ro­prac­tors Urge Reduc­tion in Emo­tional Stress to Help Spine

From the Aus­tralian news ser­vice “F2 Net­work” comes an arti­cle that informs peo­ple that emo­tional stress can have a neg­a­tive effect on the spine. The arti­cle, dated Jan­u­ary 6, 2003 quotes Dr. Anthony Coxon, Pres­i­dent of the Chiropractor’s Asso­ci­a­tion of Aus­tralia (Vic­to­ria) who says, “While most peo­ple under­stood that phys­i­cal stress can cause back pain, emo­tional pres­sure can also affect the spine. Many peo­ple think of back prob­lems as being the result of phys­i­cal knocks, bad pos­ture and lift­ing things the wrong way. But all emo­tions will trig­ger a response in the ner­vous sys­tem. In par­tic­u­lar, emo­tional stress can result in back and neck pain caused by ver­te­bral sub­lux­a­tions (par­tial dislocations).”

The arti­cle notes that ver­te­bral sub­lux­a­tions hap­pen when the bones of your spine are locked in an abnor­mal posi­tion and inter­fere with the cor­rect func­tion­ing of the ner­vous sys­tem. Dr Coxon said a recent study showed a direct link between psy­cho­log­i­cal stress and increased load­ing on the spine, but that the effects vary from per­son to per­son with “intro­verts” being affected the most.

Dr Coxon explained how the study was con­ducted. “Par­tic­i­pants in the study were hooked up to a lum­bar motion mon­i­tor and auto­matic blood pres­sure and heart rate mon­i­tors, then asked to lift an object five times.” Dr Coxon con­tin­ued, “Par­tic­i­pants were also required to fill out per­son­al­ity pro­files. Before each exper­i­ment was com­pleted, the ses­sion was inter­rupted and the tester left the room.” He then explained that dur­ing the first stage the tester was friendly and encour­ag­ing, but on return they became agi­tated and highly crit­i­cal of the participant.

The intro­duc­tion of stress into the activ­ity had sig­nif­i­cant detri­men­tal effects on the spine and sur­round­ing mus­cles. There was an imme­di­ate increase in mus­cle activ­ity and load on the spine.” Dr Coxon said the study showed that the effects of stress var­ied accord­ing to gen­der and that ‘intro­verts’, ‘intu­itors’ and ‘thinkers’ bore the brunt of the pressure.

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