Health Psychology

HEALTH PSYCHOLOGY

Mind and Body Medicine

HOW MUCH CONTROL DO WE HAVE OVER OUR HEALTH?

Do we have any control over our health? Does stress, negative thoughts, feelings or belief systems affect the ability of our body to heal and ward off disease?

The ability of the mind to affect our health has been examined and continues to be verified in virtually thousands of studies. Out of these studies a new dimension of health care has emerged called ‘mind body medicine’. This field is expanding the potential avenues in which healing can occur.

HOW THE MIND & BODY COMMUNICATE

• Our thoughts influence our body in dramatic ways. The brain communicates with the rest of the body via the nervous system. Nerve impulses leave the brain and travel into virtually all the body’s tissues and organs, affecting their function.
• The implication of the brain-body connection is far reaching. Vital bodily functions such as blood pressure regulation and immune function are greatly influenced by the brain. The entire body is literally “wired” by the brain.

REDUCE STRESS, ANXIETY & DEPRESSION

• Scientists have found that mind body techniques evoke changes at the physical level of the body.
“Mind-body-therapy helps to reshape how the brain processes and handles stressful information.”

• These techniques enable the formation of new connections within the brain which facilitate health and wellbeing.
• Brain scans revealed a calming effect of neurons in anxious patients and an increase in serotonin levels in those suffering from depression.
• Similar physical changes in the brain were noted for numerous other chronic illnesses.

BOOSTING THE IMMUNE SYSTEM

• Research into how the brain influences the immune system shows the direct correlation between our emotions and our immune function. Research can now pin point specific immune cells that change with our thoughts and emotional states.

LEARNING MIND-BODY TECHNIQUES
“Appropriate self help tools are rarely taught to us as children.
The absence of these tools makes it very difficult to know how to process and cope with adverse life situations in a healthy way.”

• Difficult life situations can range from physical or emotional abuse, to more subtle forms of negative self talk. Without effective tools, negative emotions linger in our body and have the potential to weaken our entire physical being. This makes it more difficult for our body to heal and remain free from disease.

NEW HEALING ALTERNATIVES

• These new discoveries in alternative healing have profound implications for our health. The mere fact that our brain can change and adapt over time has massive consequences on how illness is viewed and what steps are now being considered integral to the healing process.
• The tools gained from mind body medicine are tools for life. They allow you to take charge of your life and make the appropriate changes needed to heal and live the life that you have always wanted.

THE MEANING OF DISCOMFORT

• Although incredibly disruptive to our fast paced life, illness is one of the most powerful ways in which the body helps us to get back on track.
• Our body speaks to us through illness because it wants nothing more than for us to reach our potential and be all that we can be.

“The body is brilliant. It knows that through discomfort we will be forced to listen, slow down, and take the necessary steps to facilitate healing.”

• The discovery of the power of the mind to alter physical health has far reaching implications. A growing body of evidence is showing that implementing mind body techniques is one of the most profound ways to heal the body.