Mental health plays a major role in overall health and wellness. Many Americans face the grim reality of conditions like depression and anxiety, along with other mental conditions. The NIH statistics reveal that mental health disorders account for several of the top causes of disability such as major depression, manic depression, schizophrenia, and obsessive compulsive disorder. An estimated 26% of Americans ages 18 and older, that's about 1 in 4 adults, suffer from a diagnosable disorder in a given year. Approximately 9.5% of American adults aged 18 years and older suffer from a depressive illness. Finally, approximately 18% of people ages 18 - 54 in a given year, have anxiety disorder in a given year. These include panic disorders, OCD, PTSD, general anxiety and phobias. It is more important now than ever to get to the bottom of these and determine the cause.
The Peak Approach to mental illness includes many different factors. The first area to address is inflammation. There is a major connection between psychological health, and physical health. The body is a network of systems that work synergistically to result in homeostasis and balance. This could not be more evident when we look at inflammation and how it affects your mental health, which is why it is vital to address the body as a whole, rather than the traditional medical mindset of singling out one particular symptom and covering it up. Brain inflammation is extremely common among those who suffer from mental health conditions. Finding the root cause to this inflammation is a great starting point to solving this problem that affects so many.
Maybe you have heard it stated before that “disease starts in the gut”, or that “the gut is your second brain”. This is by no means an exaggeration. Your mental health is directly connected to the health of your gut. This is due to the gut-brain connection, which is very powerful in terms of your mental health.
A condition referred to as leaky gut, or intestinal permeability, has been closely linked to depression. Studies reveal 35% of people experiencing depression tested positive for leaky gut. Because of this connection between your gut and your brain, when there is a problem in the gut, the whole system can be affected resulting in unwanted symptoms.
If you want to change your mood, check your food! That is what we often tell our patients here at Peak Health Center. The foods that we eat can greatly affect our brains. It is vital to our health that we absorb the nutrients that we eat. We can do this by addressing digestive conditions like leaky gut, dysbiosis, deficiencies of our good bacterial flora, and bad bacterial overgrowth. These in addition to eating a proper diet, and avoiding your food allergies is vital to supporting healthy gut function.
Physical trauma is a major player when it comes to your health, especially your mental health. This form of stress comes in many different forms. One of the most common things that creates this interference to your function are microtraumas. These include things like bad posture, sitting with your legs crossed, poor sleeping conditions, carrying your purse, the way we hold out children, or sitting on a wallet in your back pocket. The more obvious ones that everyone thinks of when you think about tramus are car accidents, slips and falls or sports injuries. Regardless of the source of trauma, whether they are sudden like an accident, or accumulated over time like micro trauma, they are a major cause of inflammation, and put stress on normal body function.
In addition to inflammation, these traumas almost always result in a spinal condition called vertebral subluxation. Subluxation is slight misalignment of the vertebrae in the spine that greatly impacts the normal function of your spinal cord and nerves. If these subluxations result in interference to neurological function, the result is altered function to the cells tissues and organs that are supplied by those specific nerve roots. Because of the brain’s integral connection to the nervous system, misalignments can affect your mood and emotions. Getting regular chiropractic adjustments will help support the nervous system, cognitive function, and overall mental health.
The diagnosis of mental health conditions can be lonely, isolating and very confusing. Understanding the root cause, the different parts of the body that are involved, and the effects that these have on your neurological function is a great start to solving the mental health puzzle. At Peak Health Center our practitioners will help guide you to the correct tests and protocols to get your body back to normal function so you can reach your goal of getting your life back that is robbed by depression, anxiety or other mental health conditions that are so prevalent today.