Dr Bret Wilson

Staying Healthy During the Holidays


Dr Bret WilsonThe holidays are a time of joy, festivals, parties, travel, gifts, family gatherings and stress.  Your ability to manage and respond to these situations has a huge effect on your health during the season.  People don’t realize that situations that we view as pleasant and unpleasant both create stress in our body. Stress is as much a part of the holidays as tinsel and turkey.  So whether you are a Scrooge or Kris Kringle,  stress will be your companion.  Here are some steps to help you deal with stress and maintain health for the holidays.

Recognize The Signs

We are often so busy and focused on all the activities of the holidays that we don’t heed the signs of trouble coming our way until it knocks us down.  Common symptoms of stress are headache, back ache, stiffness, fatigue, digestive distress, sleep disturbances.  Other signs of stress include short temper, not finding humor in situations, lack of patience, increase use of over the counter medications and alcohol, neglecting exercise and proper diet.  If you recognize these signs in your self, take it as your cue to improve your own stress management before it leads to a health crisis.

Set Realistic Goals

Life is often busy and hectic enough without creating additional hardship by setting unrealistic standards and goals for the holidays.  There are plenty of opportunities for celebration, obligations both real and perceived, gifts to buy and expectations to meet without imposing the unrealistic expectation of perfection and full participation.  Choose to participate and choose to decline.  Set up a reasonable schedule and goals for the holidays, then work the plan.  A plan can help keep you on tract with what are the priorities for you, lessen the chance that you will overlook things important to you, and less likely to be distracted by outside influences or suggestions that will add to your stress.

Keep a sense of humor and flexibility. Plans and situations change, people can be rude, packages arrive late, and things work out in many unplanned ways.  Putting yourself in a flexible and adaptable frame of mind can better position you to make things work out.  Accept things as they are and not add additional stress by resisting anything less than perfection.  Remember you have choices, the most important choice is how you choose to respond to situations. Your choice of attitude may be the only thing you have control of.

Take Time For Yourself

There is only one of you, take care of yourself or you will not be able take care of others, do good work or provide for others.  Get proper rest.  Keep up your healthy exercise and diet habits.  Schedule quiet time away from the buzz, the crowds, the television.  Spend more time with your supportive and nurturing relationships.  Limit exposure to those people and situations that are not healthy for you.  Taking time for your self and making choices for yourself is not selfish, it is the best way to maintain the best and healthiest person you can be, a gift that you and others can appreciate during the holidays.

Visit Your Chiropractor

Chiropractors have many effective strategies for helping you deal with the stresses in your life.  A discussion with your chiropractor about the activities of your life and your body’s reaction to those demands, can lead to lifestyle modifications and healthy habits that lead to a better you.  Daily activities that maintain your health and help you recover from the demands of the day include: rest, exercise, diet, proper hydration and positive mental attitude.  Your doctor of chiropractic can provide you with information about how you can make better choices for better less stressful lifestyle.

Getting a spinal evaluation and getting the proper adjustments to your spine reduces stress and fatigue by removing nerve irritation, release muscle tension and improve blood circulation.  Restoring nerve and spinal function allows your body to more effectively mange the stress of the holidays by improving physical, mental and emotional function.  Helping your to perform and rest with greater efficiencies and health.

I wish you all happy and healthy holidays and the best in 2010.

Dr Bret Wilson
Bell West Chiropractic