By: Laura Rice, MS of Paper Cranes Wellness Center
July 24, 2017
“I let go of all negativity that rests in my mind and body”-Louise Hay
Our early years are present within us each and every day, sometimes strongly and other times with subtleness. We carry memories with us and interact with our world in a familiar way that we inevitably learned when we were just tiny humans. Children are so very impressionable and the early years are undeniably the vital time for one’s overall development. One’s social, emotional, and physical well-being is shaped from those early years. As a community, it is imperative that we recognize the importance of promoting the holistic health of our children. Taking care of our children as a community will be life changing for many, The positive outcomes will be on the child, the adult and the community itself. Caring and kind interactions with others is a positive way to improve one’s own mood, while a community with caring, kind and supportive people is ideal.
As we all know, life is not perfect, and if it were, I would not have this career of counseling to follow and to feel passionate about. (Well, that is positive thinking on my part: focus on this career that I love in place of life being horrendous at times.) Childhood experiences can be just that: horrendous, abusive, heartbreaking, traumatic, difficult, trying, depressing, unstable, rigid, unpredictable and so much more. When trauma occurs, people are recognizing that one’s well-being can be shattered in that moment. People are identifying that the child has an opportunity to repair with the right support and relationships. People understand that one can work to overcome the trauma with help and inner resilience. However that trauma is within and will be carried within their unique story that continues to touch on their well-being.
Our story is carried with us and is showing up in ways that are surprising. It can manifest in pain, heart disease, chronic fatigue, migraines, cancer and autoimmune disease. This is where a holistic approach is most beneficial (and I am proud to say that this is the Paper Cranes healthcare way). Trauma does alter our brain functioning and places one in the “fight, flight or freeze state”. Also, research findings have identified early childhood adversity has doing the same. Early childhood adversity experiences are common and typical amongst our family and community members. Some examples may include a highly critical parent or one that humiliates you, divorced parents, the death of a family member, or having an alcoholic or depressed parent are a few examples. Research has shown that ongoing adversity indicates a continuing emotional response of “fight, flight or freeze”. Yale Researchers have newly shown that a brain is altered within a child when stress hormones flood a child’s body and the stress response is set to “high” for life. In effect, the risk for inflammation is high thus leading to a greater risk for physical, medical conditions.
Nurse Practitioner, Melissa Brown of Paper Cranes Healthcare has cared for many patients in her career that face anxiety and depression resulting in physical symptoms. She believes that “It is important to treat the patient as a whole by addressing the emotional and psychological well-being, so the physical symptoms can be minimized. Some symptoms can be very scary for the patient, depending on the symptoms and their intensity, such as chest pain, shortness of breath, sweating, clammy hands, numbness and tingling, headaches abdominal pain and more . Cognitive-behavioral therapy, mindfulness practice, exercise and dietary changes can help alleviate the symptoms. Sometimes this is not enough and there are daily medication options to improve the overall emotional and physical symptoms associated with anxiety and depression. The goal is to help get through situational tough times or chronic issues for an overall improved quality of life.”
Healing begins with a holistic approach by your physician whom will recognize the need to treat your mind and body. Restoring one’s emotional health will facilitate the prevention of physical symptoms or repair the present ailments. Where should you begin if you feel that adversity or trauma has impacted your well-being:
- Talk with your healthcare provider and let them know that you experienced trauma or adverse life experiences that may be causing physical symptoms.
- Caring for your mind involves practicing mindfulness on a daily basis.
- Contact a counselor to gain support with your emotional well-being while learning strategies to enhance your life.
- Take care of yourself with health, eating, sleeping, exercise, relationships and overall life choices.
If you are interested in Wellness, Physical Health, or Counseling, please contact Paper Cranes Healthcare at 480-704-3474
Informational Sources for this Blog:
Childhood Disrupted by Donna Jackson Nakazawa
Childhood trauma leads to lifelong chronic illness-so why isn’t the medical community helping patients? By Donna Jackson Nakazawa