The Big Seize! How Stress Affects the Muscles

Most people know that stress and back pain are closely linked and that feeling regularly uptight or anxious can cause tight and stiff back muscles. But many people don’t understand why our muscles  seize up when life piles on the pressure.

When we take away the medical jargon, the explanation is really simple…

When we’re under stress, our bodies anticipate impending danger and our muscles tense up and become more rigid to protect themselves from injury. Ever noticed how your mouth feels dry when you’re nervous? This is because our bodies do not need saliva to break down food in a life or death situation – energy is stored for more relevant bodily functions.

These incredible protection mechanisms were essential for survival for our hunter-gatherer ancestors and they still are to some degree to us. (If you were being chased by a dangerous animal, those tense shaking muscles would enable you to run much faster). However, for the majority of us who are not regularly being hounded by wild beasts, frequent unused stress reactions can cause uncomfortable and often long lasting symptoms.

Our London chiropractor warns that being constantly under stress means your muscles never get a chance to relax. These tight muscles can cause back, neck and shoulder pain along with headaches, body aches and a host of other symptoms.

It really is worth indulging in some “R & R”…