Although feeling nervous or worried is normal at times, extreme stress, physical or mental trauma, drug use, or a combination of these can cause anxiety disorder which may lead to depression. What is actually going on in our body when we are exposed to these conditions?
Photograph: ALAMY | telegraph.co.uk Stress levels are on the up amongst staff
HORMONES: ADRENALIN AND CORTISOL
When we detect any dangerous situation, our body starts producing the magical hormones –adrenaline and cortisol. They make our heart pumping faster to boost energy supplies and increase the sugar level in our blood so that our brain can work better to deal with the situation. When the threatening situation has passed, their job is done and those hormone levels drop and everything goes back to normal. Sounds perfect, right?!
However, when you are under the constant stress, those hormones rather remain in the bloodstream for a long time causing anxiety disorders and depression. How? By disrupting the other hormones such as serotonin, which is the main contributor of our happiness. Cortisol also decreases the thyroid hormone secretion, which easily lead us to fatigue, low energy level, insomnia and etc.
Photograph: Naturopath Wellness 14. Adrenal fatigue, stress, cortisol and hypothyroidism (http://drsaulmarcus.com/thyroid/14hypothyroidismcortisoladrenal.html)
BENEFITS OF MASSAGE
Massage treatment decreases the cortisol level in the bloodstream by ~60%, and increases the level of serotonin (feel-good hormone) and dopamine (muscle movement). Massage treatment is not just a luxury during your leisure time. It will provide the opportunity for your body to chemically optimize your physical and mental status.
Field T, Hernandez-Reif M, Diego M, Schanberg S, Kuhn C., Cortisol decreases and serotonin and dopamine increase following massage therapy. Touch Research Institutes, University of Miami School of Medicine, Miami, Florida , 2005.
Try massage to boost your mood!
-By Kaylen Lee Guay, RMT at Evolve Therapeutic Massage