RESTORING YOUR STRESS HORMONES BACK TO HEALTH

Did you know when our hormones are out-of-whack it can cause severe mental health decline and mirror various mental health disorders? If we start to restore our HPA Axis back to health, our mental health symptoms will decrease.

WHAT IS THE HPA AXIS?

The Hypothalamic-Pituitary-Adrenal Axis (HPA Axis), which has traditionally been seen as the body's "stress system,” and ultimately controls levels of cortisol and other significant stress-related hormones, is generally underactive in people who have Chronic Fatigue Syndrome (CFS) and burnout. New research is beginning to show that the HPA axis should instead be thought of as the body's energy regulator, as it is ultimately responsible for regulating many of the hormones, nervous system activity, and energy expenditure in the human body, as well as modulating the immune system and the digestive system. Listed below are many of the various physical and mental health symptoms associated with these conditions.

Some disorders associated with the stress response system are:

• Chronic stress

• PTSD in children

• Panic disorder

• Excessive exercise

• Alcoholism

• Diabetes

• Melancholic depression

• Hyperthyroidism.

Critical times in the development of the stress response (increased vulnerability to stressors) are:

• Prenatal development

• Infancy

• Childhood

• Adolescence

The presence of stressors during these critical periods can have prolonged effects, such as sustained cacostasis (defective homeostasis) that can last the entire lifetime of an individual. These effects are determined constitutionally or epigenetically and are (to a large extent) mediated by stress hormones, such as CRH and cortisol, that have a profound impact on the brain’s stress response. The HPA Axis directly influences digestion, the immune system, energy storage and expenditure, and mood and emotional responses. It's designed to keep the body on an even keel, so it activates when exposed to a potential stressor (a short-term stress response). Long-term stress (chronic stress) will eventually trigger the HPA axis until it is overworked and under cared for causing many issues. It creates exhaustion and brain fog from chronic stress, and lack of sleep.




HOW AM I ABLE TO HELP YOU UNDER MY SCOPE OF PRACTICE AS A MENTAL HEALTH PROFESSIONAL?

HPA Axis Support Lifestyle Medicine

To start with restoring the HPA-Axis, under my scope of practice, I encourage the following:

1. Nourishing your mind and body

2. Sleep

3. Movement

4. Stress management skills

We will dig deeper into each of these components in our work together, based on your specific needs. Let’s start deactivating the emotional part of the brain’s response to help your body and mind relax. It’s essential to get to the root—can be work, environment, relationships, physical environment, past trauma, physical illness or injury, spiritual distress, nutrient deficiency, genetics, etc.

DISCLAIMER

I am a Licensed Marriage & Family Therapist (Psychotherapist), and Certified Mental Health Integrative Medicine Provider through the Mental Health Integrative Institute. Therefore, this means, I have advanced knowledge of mental health and integrative health interventions to help improve the treatment of mental health disorders utilizing a whole-body approach.

My areas of particular interest and focus are helping women heal anxiety and fatigue naturally. Again, a lot of health issues can mirror mental health disorders.  The center, in my work with clients, is on learning how meeting the needs of their body, which is the power supply for your brain, impacts energy, anxiety, and mental clarity.

I am NOT a medical doctor.  I am a Licensed Mental Health Clinician. I practice as a Psychotherapist. I am not holding myself out as a medical doctor, registered dietician, or nutritionist. I obtained additional training and certifications in health to better recognize the possibility of physiological causes that may be a player in my client's overall mental health. I have added all the additional education and training to serve my clientele better. For testing, a thorough nutritional plan, supplements, etc., I need to refer you out.  I will help you build a team of health professionals, as not one person can do it all.