There Is A Lot To Be Optimistic About
Believe it or not attitude and outlook can have a profound effect on how quickly and well your body heals from injury.
You can have belief in your own body’s ability to heal. You can truly believe this – our bodies are incredible. Cells in all of our tissue are constantly being replaced by new cells, for different tissues, this renewal takes place at different rates, and amazingly all of the cells in your body will be replaced every 7-10 years. This is a great reason for optimism!
Positive thinking is not ignoring the problem and ploughing on regardless.
Positive thinking is trusting your body, taking care enough to educate yourself about your injury, and finding clinicians or programs to help you through.
Attention brings energy, and awareness. Think of a house plant – if you pay it no attention, you might not realise what it needs.
Like – being left in low light, without water and fertiliser, or being repotted when it needs, it is unlikely to thrive.
I believe it is the same for everything in life, relationships, your car, your body, your garden, your injury.
Having intention, or paying attention, means you will listen to what is needed, and implement it. Give care and attention to your injury but in a positive frame.
Every thought releases some type of chemical in your body. When positive thoughts are generated, when you’re feeling happy, or optimistic, cortisol decreases and the brain produces serotonin, creating a feeling of well-being. When serotonin levels are normal, one feels happy, calmer, less anxious, more focused and more emotionally stable (Scaccia, 2017).
This is reflected in your body too, your blood flow will be optimised, muscle tension lowered, and your blood pressure reduced. All providing an optimum environment for healing to take place.
Negative Thoughts & Their Impact On Your Recovery
Negative thoughts and chronic stress cause continual activation of the stress response system designed to protect us from danger – the fight or flight response. Different hormones are released – epinephrine (adrenaline), cortisol, glucose is released into your bloodstream requiring insulin and more. These hormones cause vasoconstriction, shutting down of the peripheral circulation and capillaries to conserve energy to flee from the perceived danger. Blood pressure increases.
These stress hormones have been shown to impede tissue healing.
Taking charge of your healing with optimism.
We have discussed in this short article all the reasons you should feel optimistic and empowered to heal your body.
I have spent most of my working life imploring people to listen to their own body, listen deeply. It is something we are trained from a young age to ignore, but you can change that.
If sitting down on the couch for too long means you can’t walk afterwards – what should you do? If running more than 5km downhill hurts your knee what should you do?
Depending on the injury and the context this might mean resting when needed, taking care with your posture, doing your exercises/self massage/attending an exercise/meditation class, talking to a friend / Dr / therapist about your concerns, using your sit/stand desk properly, buying a new mattress, avoiding sugar and alcohol, or eating specifically for healing.
During rehabilitation it is important to set manageable goals and milestones, and celebrate small wins as they occur.
This blog was written by Nicole Brammy from the City East Physio practice. To make a booking press the button that’s below.
Scaccia, A. (2017, May 18). Serotonin: What you need to know. Retrieved September 15, 2017, from healthline: https://www.healthline.com/health/mental-health/serotonin#overview1