We know that nociceptors send stress signals to the spinal cord, which then causes a reflex that leads to loss of balance and coordination in muscles, thus driving us further into the Vicious Cycle. But as a chiropractor Little Falls MN I know that those stress signals don’t stop there. Their next destination is your brain, and from there, potentially, to every cell in your body.
Once the stress signal hits the spinal cord, it shoots up to the brain via the “spino-thalamo-cortico-pituitario-tract”—a fancy string of words that describe the pathways a nociceptor takes to the brain and you’ll never hear again unless you’re a chiropractor Little Falls MN. You see, increased nociception can cause your brain to release “stress hormones,” which are responsible for virtually every symptom of stress: increased heart rate, elevated blood pressure, increased feelings of stress, fear, anxiety, and depression. They’re also responsible for symptoms you may not be aware of: insulin resistance, elevated blood sugar levels, a change in blood cholesterol profile, diminished immune system function, bone loss, and sensitivity to pain.
As the Vicious Cycle progresses, and the increasing amount of nociceptive stress signals continue to bombard the brain and more stress hormones are released, as Dr. James Chestnut notes: “Increased release of stress hormones drives the physiology of the body toward a state of alarm and adaption, and, if these levels remain elevated, can result in fatigue, illness, and early death.”(5)
You want the least possible amount of stress hormones in your body at all times. When you consider that heart disease is the leading killer of Americans and is due, in part, to prolonged increased heart rate, blood pressure, and bad cholesterol, this becomes paramount to prolonged health. Consider, too, the second leading killer of Americans: cancer. One of the immune system’s main jobs is to identify and eliminate cancerous tumors growing in the body. If you have stress hormones coursing throughout your body for too long, your immune system weakens, and that allows cancer to grow unchecked. Lastly, think of diabetes—the third leading cause of death in the U.S. —and the fact that stress hormones allow blood sugar levels to run rampant. Once again to quote Dr. Chestnut:
“Without proper mechanoreception/nociception to your brain, you are literally sick and aging at an accelerated rate.”
I hope you better understand how devastating it is to let your spine enter and progress through the Vicious Cycle and you contact a chiropractor Little Falls MN. Not only does it rob your back and neck of their ability to be pain-free, but also, if left unchecked, can steal your potential to be healthy.
- The 14 Foundational Premises for the Scientific and Philosophical Validation of the Chiropractic Wellness Paradigm. James Chestnut, B.Ed., M.Sc., D.C. pg. 225.