All About Stress | Summer Newsletter 2004

All About Stress | Summer Newsletter 2004

Chiropractic Milwaukie OR Stressed Woman

Summer Greetings,

Recent news articles on the role stress plays in our lives inspired my writing. New research has been confirming age old understandings of how our mind, body and health are related. The April 30th Newsweek feature article on “Back Pain” included a short description of how stress and tension can contribute to ongoing back pain. A new model of biopsychosocial medicine” is emerging that has some revolutionary implications for us.

What is Stress?

Stress is the response of your body to all demands made upon it . Stressors can be a physical, mental or emotional, internal or external condition that stimulates a response. Stress is that response.

Is Stress Bad?

By that definition stress is neither bad nor good. It is a normal part of living. Just getting out of bed entails a certain amount of stress. Problems develop when we don’t have a respite from the cumulative effects of stress. Like a glass filling one drop at a time, eventually with one more drop and it is overflowing. So too our bodies and minds need to replenish and rejuvenate on periodic basis.

What Are The Effects of Stress?

Our bodies respond to stress in many ways. Hormones, like adrenaline, surge. Heartbeat and blood pressure may increase. Many of us hold our stress and tension in the muscles. If unchecked that tension can translate into headaches, back and neck pain. Recent evidence has linked stress to the immune system lowering resistance to common pathogens.

Was Grandma Right?

Yes! “Get plenty of rest, eat right, make nice friends, hope for the best and wear a scarf when it’s cold” was and is the best advice to minimize the effects of stress.


  1. Take a timeout on a daily, weekly and monthly basis.
    Empty the cup by finding a quiet time each day. Meditation and prayer are ways to quiet the mind in the moment. Weekend getaways or longer vacations are also crucial to staying in balance.
  2. Exercise regularly
    At least three times per week break a sweat in an aerobic activity. My preference is a brisk yoga class but any aerobic activity will do. Find one you enjoy that incorporates strength, stretching, and balance exercises.
  3. Eat & Sleep Right
    Avoid caffeine & excessive alcohol. Avoid eating a lot of spicy foods. Don’t eat late at night and as Grandma said, “eat your veggies”. Regular bedtimes and get your eight hours per night.
  4. Shivasana (Corpse Pose)
    Find a carpeted or padded surface to lie on. Support your neck and head with a rolled blanket or small pillow. With your arms at your side and palms face up, let your legs and feet lie in a restful position. If possible breathe through the nostrils, if not breathe normally. Become mindful of the breath. Let thoughts and feelings pass by without judgment. Soften the skin of the face, eyes and forehead. Let your cheeks go slack and jaw open slightly. As you let go of any efforts, lightly begin to explore your body. Are you holding any unnecessary tension or effort. If so, let your breathe melt the tension, release the effort. If your mind wanders come gently back to the present moment via the breath and start again.


9:00am - 12:00pm
2:30pm - 6:00pm


9:00am - 12:00pm
2:30pm - 6:00pm


9:00am - 12:00pm
2:30pm - 6:00pm

Saturday & Sunday

Milwaukie Wellness Center
5111 SE Lake Road Suite 1
Milwaukie, OR 97222
(503) 659-5900