3 Tips to Make Your Job or Career Change a Healthy One!

There is no doubt that switching a job or career is a stressful event in anyone’s life often causing people anxiety and affecting their health when they need to be at their best. This is even worse if you were fired or laid off from your job. In this case, a person’s stress level ranks 8th out of all major life stressors on the Holmes and Rahe scale at a 47. To put that in perspective, number one at a rating of 100 is the death of a spouse. What is also amazing is how often people are changing careers and jobs in our current job market; the average person will change careers 5-7 times during their working lives. On top of that, about 30% of the total workforce will change jobs every 12 months. This is a lot of people who are walking around with a highly increased stress level and that is taking a serious toll on their health. For instance, increased and prolonged stress can cause higher blood pressure, heart conditions, sleeping problems, upset stomach, diabetes, decreased energy levels, brain fog, depression and anxiety just to name a few. So what can we do to combat the harmful effects of this stressful event but also help a person’s brain and body to excel in their next career chapter?

Adrenal Support

The adrenal glands are the factories for producing the body’s stress hormone, cortisol, and these glands work overtime to keep up with the racing thoughts and uncertainty. So to support these tiny glands, it is wise to avoid substances that are going to cause your adrenal glands to pump more cortisol before the well runs dry and a person is left in a state of constant fatigue.  Stay away from caffeinated beverages, sodas and coffee the best you can. On top that any substance that affects your blood sugars will have an effect on your cortisol levels, such things like sugary snacks and food, high carbohydrate foods and alcoholic beverages. Exercise is key to helping the body use up your stress hormones and decrease the effects of having excess cortisol in the system. Supplementation can also help keep these important glands health. The clinical research has several references to the health benefits of adaptogenic herbs. These herbs help to support your body and keep your body’s chemistry within range.

Brain training

Everybody has strengths and weaknesses in their brains; there are functional differences in the way certain pathways fire in the brain and how active or under active these pathways are. More importantly, a qualified healthcare practitioner trained in functional neurology can name this weakness in your brains function and then match it up with a treatment or exercise to make these pathways work better. This is not only important to help rehab the damage that is going on in person’s brain when they are under stress but to also getting that person’s brain firing better so they can do their next adventure.

Neurofeedback 

This is a great treatment modality to help a person regulate the electrical activity in their brain. The first step is to do a brain map were a cap with 19 different sensors read the electrical activity in a person’s brain. It is then compared to a statistical analysis comparing 1000s of other people who are the same age and gender to see what parts of the brain have too much or too little activity. After we gather this information, it is time to train that part of your brain through operant conditioning. This is when we reward a person’s brain when it is in a good brainwave frequency. We reward through sound, a video or through a game. The overall outcome is a sharper calmer brain.

A new career or job is exciting.  Get yourself ready!

Dr. David Hardy, DC
February 21, 2018

Functional Endocrinology of Ohio
Akron: 2800 S. Arlington Road, Akron, Ohio 44312 (330) 644-5488
Cleveland: 6200 Rockside Woods Blvd., Ste. 100, Independence, Ohio 44131 (216) 236-0060
Dr. Keith S. Ungar and Dr. David Hardy, Chiropractic Physicians

To schedule an appointment, click here.

References:
http://www.careers-advice-online.com/career-change-statistics.html
https://www.stress.org/holmes-rahe-stress-inventory/

4 Questions to Consider if You Struggle With Anxiety, Depression or Other Brain-Related Condition”

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The Link Between Chiropractic Care and Brain Function

You may have heard of a vertebral subluxation and may even know that a good chiropractor can help with that. But, did you also know that a subluxation can impact brain function?

What is a Vertebral Subluxation you might ask?

A vertebral subluxation is a vertebra that has lost its normal position and/or motion in relation to its existing vertebrae. When this occurs the surrounding muscle, ligaments, and discs start to weaken much more readily due to compensation and overuse.

What can cause this you might ask?     Untitled design (87)

Subluxations can be caused by a physical, chemical, or emotional entity. A physical vertebral subluxation can occur due to acute trauma, disc degeneration, curvatures, spondylolisthesis, structural abnormalities, imbalanced spinal musculature, repetitive motions that affect the spine, bad posture, among other things. A chemical contributor can be in the form of poor nutritional habits, dietary changes, toxins, alcohol use, and drug abuse. The last factor is the emotional aspect, which includes stress. Stresses can deteriorate normal functions within the body creating a weakened immune system leading to greater risk of injury and disease.

How does this relate to our brain?

Heidi Haavik, Kelly Holt, Bernadette Murphy, along with others undertook a recent study published in the Journal of Neural Plasticity. The JOURNAL OF NEURAL PLASTICITY! “The research shows that when we adjust the spine, we significantly increase activity in the prefrontal cortex. “The study showed a change in brain function by almost 20% on average. The prefrontal cortex is the area of the brain where higher learning and cognition happens.” A chiropractic adjustment already helps with sensorimotor function (for the prevention of falls), improved joint position sense, improved muscle strength, better pelvic floor stability, and the ability to perform mental rotation of objects. We now know that along with all of this we can also improve our eye movements, spatial awareness, behavior, goal-oriented tasks, decision making, memory and attention, intelligence, the process behind pain, autonomic function, and motor control.  So… in turn getting regular chiropractic adjustments for spinal subluxations can help with brain function/activity.

How does this link with neurofeedback training?

This comes full circle when we combine chiropractic care with neurofeedback training. Along with the adjustment affecting the prefrontal cortex, the neurofeedback training conducted in clinic helps to fire off the different lobes and pathways in our brain as well. A good analogy in understanding neurofeedback is when comparing it to physical exercise. We challenge our body by applying various exercises and weights. Neurofeedback is similar in the sense that we are challenging our brain to learn and function better by focusing our attention on a goal-oriented task and training our brain to move away from undesirable states like anxiety and depression for example.

Dr. Kristy Narsinghani
Chiropractic Intern
August 28, 2016

Functional Endocrinology of Ohio
Akron: 2800 S. Arlington Road, Akron, Ohio 44312 (330) 644-5488
Cleveland: 6200 Rockside Woods Blvd., Ste. 100, Independence, Ohio 44131 (216) 236-0060
Dr. Keith S. Ungar, Dr. Andrew Kender, Dr. Robert Nichols, Dr. Jessica Eckman
Chiropractic Physicians

To schedule an appointment, click here.

http://circleofdocs.com/without-a-doubt-chiropractic-research-shows-adjusting-the-subluxated-spine-changes-brain-function/

Neurofeedback is Proven Effective: The Research

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Can You Really Retrain Your Brain?

If you follow the Realwellnessdoc, then you know that we offer neurofeedback in our office.  We’ve posted several blogs describing neurofeedback and explaining how it works.  Despite this, you may wonder about the research behind it and whether it would work for you.  So for you research-geeks, here are some links to some great articles from reliable sources discussing neurofeedback and its efficacy for depression, anxiety, ADD, seizures, PTSD, sleep problems, migraines, and other brain-related conditions.

From the Mental Health Daily: the efficacy of neurofeedback and anxiety disorders.

From the Journal of Pediatrics: Neurofeedback provides a long-term solution to ADD that continues post-treatment.  

A NASA researcher discusses using neurofeedback to help kids with ADD. 

Neurofeedback: A Brain Flex to Help Olympic Athletes Train for a Better Performance

From the American Board of Sports Psychology: Neurofeedback for the Enhancement of Athletic Performance and Improved Balance

The role of neurofeedback on epileptic seizures

From the Clinical EEG and Neuroscience Magazine: The role of neurofeedback and migraines.

The role of neurofeedback on Traumatic Brain Injury/Posttraumatic Stress Symptoms in OEF/OIF Veterans

Neurofeedback’s role in reducing depression, fatigue, and other problematic symptoms in patients with traumatic brain injury.  

Neurofeedback and depression and sleep problems.

Neurofeedback and sleep problems

If you would like to find out more, come to one of our free lectures on the topic in our Independence office on April 4th at 6:00, April 13th at 9:15 and April 27th at 11:45. The address is below.

Click here to register. We will be conducting a tour of our neurofeedback department on the April 4th and April 27th dates.

I hope to see you there!

Caroline Boardman
March 30, 2016

www.balancingyourchemistry.com

Functional Endocrinology of Ohio
Akron: 2800 S. Arlington Road, Akron, Ohio 44312 (330) 644-5488
Cleveland: 6200 Rockside Woods Blvd., Ste. 100, Independence, Ohio 44131 (216) 236-0060
Dr. Keith S. Ungar and Dr. Andrew Kender, Chiropractic Physicians

To schedule an appointment, click here.

Brain-Building: The Key to Longevity?

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4 Essential Facts You Need to Know About Neuroplasticity

In the last decade, it has become clear that our brain’s ability to function at its highest level is, at least partly, within our control.  Genetics and head trauma play a role but so does our environment, the foods we eat, and the quality of our daily brain workout. 

In 2014, on Father’s Day weekend, I was in a boating accident.  I was a passenger in a 4-seater SeaDoo jet boat driving in a no-wake zone.  A young inexperienced driver in a 27 foot speed boat struck us at full speed.  I had broken ribs and a concussion.  There is so much I could write about the effect of that accident on my life – about how it gave me a new perspective on things, about how I look at each day differently, and about how blessed I am to have the people in my life that supported me after the accident.  But, the scope of this article is to share with you the importance of neuroplasticity in a brain that is damaged by trauma, age, environmental factors and the failure to give the brain the attention it deserves and requires.

The word, “neuroplasticity” comes from the root words, “neuron” and “plastic.”  “Neuroplasticity refers to the potential that the brain has to reorganize by creating new neural pathways to adapt, as it needs.”[1]  The old school of thought was that the brain is static, except “during some critical developmental periods.”[2]  We now know that is not true.  Our brains are remarkable.  They can reorganize pathways, create new connections and even create new neurons throughout your lifetime if treated well. (Click Link to Tweet)

Here are the bare-bone facts about neuroplasticity.

  1. Neuroplasticity Occurs Under 2 Conditions:  “(1) during normal brain development when the immature brain first begins to process sensory information through adulthood (developmental plasticity and plasticity of learning and memory), and (2) as an adaptive mechanism to compensate for lost function and/or to maximize remaining functions in the event of brain injury.”[3]

2.  Cells that Fire Together, Wire Together.   “When people repeatedly practice an activity or access a memory, their neural networks — groups of neurons that fire together, creating electrochemical pathways — shape themselves according to that activity or memory.”[4]  Over time, “these connections become thick, hardy road maps that link various parts of the brain. When people stop practicing new things, the brain will eventually eliminate, or prune,” the connecting cells that formed the pathways.[5]  Thus, you must always continue to practice new things to create new pathways and to make sure the “map” in your brain will take you where you want to go.

3.  Our Senses are Closely Connected to Memory and Cognition.  Thus, a weakness in one of the brain’s pathways can effect one of more of your senses.

 For example, we all know that Alzheimer’s patients slowly lose their memories. One way this manifests is that they eat less food. Why? As it turns out, visual deficits are also a part of Alzheimer’s. People eat less because they can’t see the food as well. Another example is in normal age-related cognitive changes. As we grow older, we get more forgetful and distracted in large part because our brain does not process what we hear, see, and feel as well as it once did. The result is that we can’t store images of our experiences as clearly, and so have trouble using them and recalling them later.[6]

4.  Neuroplasticity is directly related to age.  The brain changes at all ages, “but different kinds of change are relevant at different ages.”[7]   The brain will change and rewire itself through its life in responds to stimulation of learning and experience. “As we age, the rate of change in the brain, or neu­ro­plas­tic­ity, declines but [it] does not come to a halt. In addi­tion, we now know that new neu­rons can appear in cer­tain parts of the brain up until the day we die.”[8]   We may increase our brain’s plasticity to try to slow down the aging process.

So what can you do to improve your brain’s function?

  1. Get evaluated by a good functional neurologist so that you can discover any brain weaknesses and any metabolic issues affecting your brain function. Click here to read our blog post about functional neurology and click on any of our doctors’ names below to read about their training.
  2. Engage in neurological therapies. Click here for a list of some of the therapies we use in our office.
  3. Have your brain-mapped and trained using neurofeedback. Click here to read our blog post about neurofeedback or here to visit our neurofeedback website.
  4. Meditate.  Click here to visit Dr. Joe Dispenza’s website to learn about how meditation changes the brain.
  5. Try one of the many brain-training “games” on-line like, Lumosity, Peak, Elevate, or Fit Brains. You can also get these on your phone as mobile apps.

The good news is that for most people, you can improve the brain’s neuroplasticity if you are capable of learning anything new, no matter how small.  Obviously, the level of improvement will depend on many factors. You will notice even greater improvement when you combine one or more of the action steps above.

As for me, I’ve done “all of the above” and will continue to work out both my body and my brain in hopes of living a long and healthy life.  I may also avoid boating for a while  🙂

Dr. Keith S. Ungar
May 17, 2015

www.balancingyourchemistry.com
Email: info@feohio.com
Functional Endocrinology of Ohio
Akron: 2800 S. Arlington Road, Akron, Ohio 44312 (330) 644-5488
Cleveland: 6200 Rockside Woods Blvd., Ste. 100, Independence, Ohio 44131 (216) 236-0060
Dr. Keith S. Ungar, and Dr. Andrew Kender, Chiropractic Physicians
Click here to make an appointment.

[1] http://www.whatisneuroplasticity.com
[2] http://articles.mercola.com/sites/articles/archive/2015/01/15/neuroplasticity-brain-health.aspx
[3] http://www.efpta.org/docs/NeuroplasticityMM-474891-29-04-2012.pdf
[4] http://www.edutopia.org/neuroscience-brain-based-learning-neuroplasticity
[5] Id.
[6] http://www.brainhq.com/brain-resources/brain-plasticity/what-is-brain-plasticity
[7] http://www.efpta.org/docs/NeuroplasticityMM-474891-29-04-2012.pdf
[8] http://sharpbrains.com/resources/1-brain-fitness-fundamentals/neuroplasticity-the-potential-for-lifelong-brain-development

Finding Your Peace of Mind: Guided Imagery in 3 Parts

Guided Imagry Picture 1

Uncover Guided Imagery

There are a lot of people in the world that are constantly on the go, never allowing their bodies and minds to rest. Rest is very important for both our physical and psychological state. Guided imagery can help give your body the peace of mind it craves and deserves!  Regular practice of guided imagery also improves the effectiveness of treatments like neurofeedback.

I love the idea of meditation, but like many others I find myself lacking the time and discipline to meditate daily. I have always been attracted to guide imagery because you are in control of the experience and can visualize anything you want. After talking to a lot of patients, friends, and family it seems like the most common theme people like to visualize is a beach setting. For me my peaceful place is a brisk snowy night! There is no limit to what you can visualize. The best thing to do is let yourself get into a relaxed state and starting focusing on positive thoughts. Those positive thoughts will eventually lead you to a positive experience. Some people like to think about their children, watching them play or holding them as a baby. Others examples could be playing with pets, reliving a memorable moment from the past, imagining a successful achievement that you’ve been working towards, white blood cells cleansing your body of disease, etc. In this blog I have outlined some of the basics about guided imagery. I could talk about it all day, if you have any more questions please leave a comment and I would be happy to help.

What is Guided Imagery?

Most people think that guided imagery only involves your visual senses. This is not true, guided imagery techniques actually involve all 5 of the senses.[1]. [Click to Tweet] This fact is important to know because only around 55% of the population is strongly wired visually. Do not be discouraged from guided imagery even if you are not a very visual person.  When you are practicing, you involve your whole body and work with all of your senses to achieve the most powerful experience.

Guided imagery is one of the easiest form of relaxation in which you can take part. Although it is a form of meditation, guided imagery is easier for most to use than deep, mindfulness meditation. Guided imagery requires far less time and discipline but still allows participants to develop a high level of skill.

The 3 Key Components of Guided Imagery

The three most important parts of guided imagery are mind-body connection, altered state, and locus of control, [Click to Tweet] according to author Naparstek who wrote Staying Well with Guided Imagery and Invisible Heroes.[1]

  1. The Mind-Body Connection:

    One of the most important factors is a person’s mind-body connection. For example, whether you see food, reads about food, hear or smell food cooking, your mind has the same response. Your mind thinks food! You may even salivate from the thought of food. When you involve any of you senses, you trigger a mental response. The purpose of guided imagery is to use this mind-body connection to develop a positive and empowering experience.

  2. Altered State:

The second part of guided imagery is developing an altered state. The best way to describe a successful altered state would be a relaxed focus with a kind of calm but energized alertness.[1] Attention becomes concentrated on one thing or at least on something very narrowed down. It will cause a heightened sensitivity to the object of focus, and a decreased awareness of everything else that is going on in the external environment. It is in the altered state that we are capable of more rapid and intense healing, growth, learning and performance.[1] In an altered state we are even more intuitive and creative. Our brain wave activity and our biochemistry actually also shift when we are in this state.

3.  Locus of Control:

The third piece to guided imagery is locus of control, or the state of feeling in control. Now, this may seem like the simplest task to some but others may find this very hard to do. The bottom line is there has been years of research that shows a direct connection with feeling in control to gaining higher optimism, self-esteem, and ability to tolerate pain, ambiguity and stress.[1] On the other hand, feeling out of control or helpless will actually lower self-esteem, omit the ability to cope and lose optimism about the future.[1] If you find it hard to convince yourself that you are in fact in control of a situation, instead of stating you are in control ask yourself this simple question: “Why do I have such strong control over this situation?”

Guided Imagry Picture 2 More Interesting Facts About Guided Imagery
  • Because of the brain structures involved it often heightens emotion, laughter, sensitivity to music, openness to spirituality, intuition, abstract thinking and empathy.[1]
  • Women and children tend to have a natural advantage with achieving guided imagery
  • It can considerably reduce blood loss during surgery and reduce the need for morphine use post-surgery.[2]
  • Decreases headaches and pain.
  • It can increase skills such at skiing, skating, tennis, writing, acting and singing.[2]
  • It accelerates weight loss or aid in quitting smoking. [Click to Tweet]
  • It has been proven to reduce the adverse effects of chemotherapy, especially nausea, depression and fatigue.[2]
  • There are no known risks.[3]
  • Relieve stress, anxiety, depression by 65%.[3]
  • Insomnia relief, improve sleep 85%.[3]

Take some time to study and apply guided imagery in your life, let us know what powerful ways it has affected your life!

Missty Klinger
February 7, 2016

www.balancingyourchemistry.com

Functional Endocrinology of Ohio
Akron: 2800 S. Arlington Road, Akron, Ohio 44312 (330) 644-5488
Cleveland: 6200 Rockside Woods Blvd., Ste. 100, Independence, Ohio 44131 (216) 236-0060
Dr. Keith S. Ungar and Dr. Andrew Kender, Chiropractic Physicians

To schedule an appointment, click here.

  1. Health Journeys. (2015). Staying Well with Guided Imagery. http://www.healthjourneys.com/WhatIsGuidedImagery
  1. U-M Health System. (2016). http://www.mcancer.org/support/managing-emotions/complementary-therapies/guided-imagery
  1. Guided Imagery Inc. (2015). Sleep, Stress, Anxiety Relief, Relaxation, & Guided Imagery CDs. http://www.guidedimageryinc.com/

Images

** http://www.councilonrecovery.org/experiential-treatment-at-the-council-on-recovery-guided-imagery/

**** http://www.inc.com/marla-tabaka/visualization-can-help-you-succeed.html

6 Ways To Supercharge Your Memory

Memory  6 Ways to Supercharge Your Memory

­­What did I need at the grocery store?   What is his or her name?   Who was I supposed to call back?   Where do I need to be and when?   We all have suffered from time to time with memory problems.  But, we can supercharge our memories!  First, a little bit of background.

Memory loss is one of the first warning signs of cognitive decline.[1]  It can also be the result of a metabolic or other health issue.[2]  There are four 4 types of memory: Sensory, Short-Term, Working & Long-Term.[3] Sensory Memory is a very brief recall of a sensory experience, such as what we just saw or heard. Short-term memory is that brief period when you can recall information you were just exposed to from 30 seconds to a few days. Id.  The human mind’s ability to hold a limited amount of information in a very accessible state temporarily is called short-term memory states author, Nelson Cowan. (Cowan, 2009) Working memory is our brain’s ability to store a limited amount of information available just long enough to use it. (Heerema, 2014) Working memory helps you plan and carry out behavior. Long-term memory is a vast storage of knowledge and a record of earlier events. Long-term memories can range from a few days to decades. Id.

Memory is important in everyone’s day to day life. We cherish our memories and hope they will last forever. Did you know that even when it becomes harder for us to recall certain memories that they are not lost forever? Memories do not vanish; they are still being stored in your brain. However, our ability to access these memories can diminish over time. The brain’s incredible ability to reshape itself holds true when it comes to learning and memory. You can harness the natural power of neuroplasticity to increase your cognitive abilities, enhance your ability to learn new information, and improve your memory.[4]  When you notice early signs such as forgetting names, directions, or simple instructions it is time to get to work! Here are a few ways to help you exercise your brain and work on improving your ability to retrieve memory.

  1. Neurofeedback

For people who do not respond well to medications, or people looking for a natural alternative to pharmaceutical treatments, neurofeedback is a great option. Especially effective in a clinical setting where the clients can also receive cognitive and emotional support, neurofeedback targets the underlying disregulations in brain activity that can increase or cause clinical symptoms. [Click to Tweet] Neurfeedback promotes health brain activity by creating positive changes at the source of the problem. Clients can begin to experience the benefits of increased cognitive function and lowered stress levels. These changes help increase the speed and fluidity of retrieving memories.

  1. Water Your Brain

Drinking water is one of the best things you can do for your brain.  Your brain works like an electrical current. Dehydration causes the currency to become weak. [Click to Tweet] Researchers from the University of East London and the University of Westminster in the UK analyzed particular areas of the participants’ brain, including reaction time, verbal recognition memory, visual memory and learning.[5]  They found that participants who drank around three cups of water just before completing tests had a 14% increased reaction time compared with those who did not drink any water. Id.

  1. Brain Games

There are plenty of fun ways to help train your brain to recall memories quicker and easier. With today’s technology, we have access to endless websites and cellphone apps that strengthen your brain. One of the most well-known websites is Luminosity, which offers a simple online tool with games that exercise core cognitive abilities. You can use Luminosity from a computer, tablet, or cellphone for iOS (iPhones) or Android operating systems.

  1. Work Out Your Hands

Memory, like muscular strength, requires you to “use it or lose it.” The more you work out your brain, the better you’ll be able to process and remember information. [Click to Tweet] The best brain exercises break your routine and challenge you to use and develop new brain pathways. Activities that require using your hands are a great way to exercise your brain. (Smith, 2015) Playing a musical instrument, juggling, enjoying a game of ping-pong (table tennis), making pottery, knitting, or needlework are activities that exercise the brain by challenging hand-eye coordination, spatial-temporal reasoning, and creativity. (Smith, 2015)

  1. Play Games
  • Picture Memory
  • Matching Pairs (Match the Pictures)
  • Matching Pairs (Match the Words)
  • Universal Crossword
  • Sudoku Daily

6.  Just Say No to Technology

When the working memory is experiencing digital overload, it’s like a glass of water overflowing. According to Tony Schwartz, author of The Way We’re Working Isn’t Working, as explained in an interview with The Huffington Post in June:

“It’s like having water poured into a glass continuously all day long, so whatever was there at the top has to spill out as the new water comes down. We’re constantly losing the information that’s just come in — we’re constantly replacing it, and there’s no place to hold what you’ve already gotten. It makes for a very superficial experience; you’ve only got whatever’s in your mind at the moment. And it’s hard for people to metabolize and make sense of the information because there’s so much coming at them and they’re so drawn to it. You end up feeling overwhelmed because what you have is an endless amount of facts without a way of connecting them into a meaningful story.”[6]

I hope this article gives you some useful information to help you recharge your memory. Now, put this list somewhere you can find it so you don’t forget to carry out some of these ideas.

Missty Klinger
April 4, 2015

For more information, visit our website: www.balancingyourchemistry.com

Functional Endocrinology of Ohio
Akron: 2800 S. Arlington Road, Akron, Ohio 44312 (330) 644-5488
Cleveland: 6200 Rockside Woods Blvd., Ste. 100, Independence, Ohio 44131 (216) 236-0060
Dr. Keith S. Ungar and Dr. Andrew Kender, Chiropractic Physicians

To Make An Appointment, Click Here.

[1] Cowan, N. (2009). What are the differences between long-term, short-term, and working memory? Retrieved from http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC2657600/
[2] http://www.nlm.nih.gov/medlineplus/ency/article/000683.htm
[3] Heerema,  E. (2014). 4 Types of Memory: Sensory, Short-Term, Working & Long-Term. Retrieved from http://alzheimers.about.com/od/symptomsofalzheimers/a/4-Types-Of-Memory-Sensory-Short-Term-Working-And-Long-Term.htm
[4] Smith, M. (2015). How to Improve Your Memory. Retrieved from http://www.helpguide.org/articles/memory/how-to-improve-your-memory.htm
[5] Whiteman, H. (2013). Drinking water boosts your brain’s reaction time.
http://www.medicalnewstoday.com/articles/263648.php
[6] http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2013/12/11/technology-changes-memory_n_4414778.html

Graphic courtesy of: http://multibriefs.com/briefs/exclusive/0919memory.jpg

 

Don’t Worry Be Happy – 9 Tools To Help You Kick Your Anxiety to the Curb!

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9 Ways To Keep Anxiety From

Dominating Your Life

Anxiety comes in many forms. Some people get nervous about social events or large crowds of people. Others get overly excited. Some people with anxiety suffer from constant worrying and negative or pessimistic thinking. A lot of people with anxiety feel like their brain is stuck on repeat – the same thought replayed in their head over and over, again and again.  You may say something to these people once but in their mind, you’ve said it more than a hundred times!
I have suffered with anxiety most of my life. I remember suffering with it as a teenager and all throughout my young adulthood. In a way, I am glad that I have gone through this struggle because it helps me relate to my neurofeedback patients. Anxiety is one of those things, kind of like sinus problems, if you do not have it you don’t really understand what it is like to suffer with it. Having this first-hand experience allows me to put myself in my patient shoes and help them through their progression. Aside from encouraging others’ happiness, I work hard at encouraging myself. One of the best exercises I have ever done through the years was creating and updating my “Makes Me Happy List.”  [Click to Tweet] This may sound a little childish but it works! One day I sat down and wrote out a long list of things, people, events, activities, etc. that make me feel happy. Some of the items on my list are simple like eating sushi, painting, listening to music, or having a girl’s night. Some of them are a little harder to do like playing in the snow, especially if it’s not winter. However, since I have over 100 items to choose from I can always find one or two things that I can do right away. I recommend doing this activity when you are in a positive mood and to write down as many things that you can.  You can also add new stuff as time goes by. To all of you reading this blog who suffer from anxiety, or those who love someone who suffers with it, remember it is controllable.   We can control our own lives. I also would like to give you a virtual hug and urge you to keep making positive steps in the right direction.
One of the biggest misconceptions is that everyone with anxiety suffers from anxiety attacks. That is false.  Not all people with anxiety actually suffer from anxiety or “panic” attacks. Panic attacks are a sudden episode of intense fear that triggers severe physical reactions when there is no real danger or apparent cause.  When a panic attack occurs, you might think you’re losing control, having a heart attack or even dying.[1]  It is important to understand the difference between the two. Generalized Anxiety Disorder (GAD) affects 6.8 million adults or 3.1% of the U.S. population while Panic Disorder affects 6 million, or 2.7% of the U.S. population. Unfortunately women are twice as often affected by anxiety or panic disorders as men.[2]
Since this topic is relevant to my life, I wanted to take some time to tell you a few of my tricks and tips I have learned over the years to help control or reduce my anxious moments.

9 Ways To Reduce Anxiety.

1) Sleep. Get a good night sleep! Sleep is so important for our health. On average, you should get a solid seven to nine hours of sleep. Lack of sleep throws your body off rhythm and contributes to overall anxiety and stress.
2) Breath. “Deep breathing counters the effects of stress by slowing the heart rate and lowering blood pressure,” says psychologist Judith Tutin, PhD.[3]  Deep diaphragmatic breathing is a powerful anxiety-reducing technique because it activates the body’s relaxation response. It helps the body go from the fight-or-flight response of the sympathetic nervous system to the relaxed response of the parasympathetic nervous system.[4]  She suggested this practice: “Try slowly inhaling to a count of 4, filling your belly first and then your chest, gently holding your breath to a count of 4, and slowly exhaling to a count of 4 and repeat several times.” If you are having an anxiety attack the best way to control your breathing is to use a paper bag (never plastic!) to slow down and regulate your breathing pattern.
Please read the great blog Dr. David Starkey D.C. wrote titled “The Top 10 Reasons to Breathe Yourself to Better Health” for more information on how breathing can help your body.[5]
3) Laugh. We are all familiar with the old saying that laughter is the best medicine. This has been scientifically proven. According to the Mayo Clinic, laughter has a lot of positive short-term and long-term effects. Some of the short-term effects are that it increases oxygen that stimulates your organs and increases the endorphins released to your brain. It also raises your heart rate and blood pressure while reducing your body’s stress response. Laughter also helps relax muscles by stimulating blood circulation. Some of the long-term effects include helping your immune system. It does this by reducing the negative chemicals that your body releases from stress and increasing neuropeptides that help fight serious illnesses. Laughter can also act as a natural painkiller. Overall, allowing yourself to laugh is going to reduce stress and anxiety.[6]
Untitled design (26) 4) Find a positive outlet. For me one of the best ways to deal with anxiety is to either exercise or listen to some music. All forms of exercise, including yoga and walking, can ease depression and anxiety by helping the brain release feel-good chemicals and by giving your body a chance to practice dealing with stress. Please read these great blogs about yoga or about walking.   Also, research shows that listening to soothing music can lower blood pressure, heart rate, and anxiety. This could include classical music, nature sounds, beach sounds, or rain simulators.
5) Meditate or use guided imagery. A few minutes of practice per day can help ease anxiety. “Research suggests that daily meditation may alter the brain’s neural pathways, making you more resilient to stress,” says psychologist Robbie Maller Hartman, PhD, a Chicago health and wellness coach. 2. Please read “Meditation Can Actually Create More Time in Your Day”.  If meditating isn’t appealing to you, guided imagery is also effective. You can download or buy hundreds of different guided imagery tracks. They will walk you through relaxing your entire body one part at a time while focusing your mind of pleasant visualizations. Guided imagery can last from 10- 60 minutes.
6) Talk to someone. One of the easiest ways to stop the repeat button or broken track in your head is to say what you are thinking about out loud.  [Click to Tweet] Find someone who you trust and use them as a sounding board. Let it out! Even if the thought seems way too far-fetched or ridiculous once you say it out loud it will help you process that thought. This also gives you the opportunity to decide whether your thoughts are rational or irrational. Let go of the irrational thought! Focus on the positive or rational thoughts.
7) Journal. If you do not have someone or are not yet comfortable talking to someone when you are anxious, then start a journal. Journals are a safe place to pour out your thought, feeling, and emotions. I always recommend keeping the notes in your journal positive since we are trying to ease your anxiety. Or, at the very least, wrap up your entry with a positive note.
8) Focus on now. Always remember to take things one day at a time. Yes, life does happen all at once but if you sit down and prioritize your day, week, month, and year it will help relieve the stress and anxiety of taking care of everything all at once. Focus most of your energy on the events or tasks that matter the most,  [Click to Tweet] like taking care of your family, your career, finishing school, volunteering, traveling, or maybe a hobby. Whatever matters the most to you should take the highest priority and therefore receive the most focus and energy from you. This is not possible if you are constantly focusing on worrying and stress.
9) Keep Busy. One of the best ways to reduce anxiety is to distract you or keep yourself busy. As I mentioned earlier, I have a “Makes me happy list” and I recommend this for anyone with anxiety. When anxiety or depression consumes you, it is hard to remember what exactly makes you happy. This list acts like a cheat sheet – just pick out a few things off your list to distract yourself. If you are at work and you feel anxious take on more tasks or projects, or help a co-worker. When you help someone else out or do something that makes someone else happy, it is a natural response to feel satisfied and happy yourself.  Smiles are contagious!  [Click to Tweet]
Anxiety is embarrassing, annoying, and inconvenient, but it doesn’t have to consume your life. Every day is a new chance to live a better, more positive life. I hope some of these tips prove helpful, please share any positive experiences you have or have had!
What are some things you practice to control or reduce your anxiety?
Missty Klinger
June 28, 2015
www.balancingyourchemistry.com
To schedule a free neurofeedback consultation, click here.
Functional Endocrinology of Ohio
Akron: 2800 S. Arlington Road, Akron, Ohio 44312 (330) 644-5488
Cleveland: 6200 Rockside Woods Blvd., Ste. 100, Independence, Ohio 44131 (216) 236-0060
Dr. Keith S. Ungar, Dr. David Starkey and Dr. Andrew Kender, Chiropractic Physicians

[1] . Mayo Clinic. (2015). Stress relief from laughter? It’s no joke. Retrieved from http://www.mayoclinic.org/healthy-lifestyle/stress-management/in-depth/stress-relief/art-20044456
[2] Adaa. (2015). Facts & Statistics. Retrieved from http://www.adaa.org/about-adaa/press-room/facts-statistics
[3] Moninger, J. (2015). 10 Relaxation Techniques That Zap Stress Fast. Retrieved from http://www.webmd.com/balance/guide/blissing-out-10-relaxation-techniques-reduce-stress-spot
[4] Tartakovsky, M. (2013). 9 Ways to Reduce Anxiety Right Here, Right Now. Retrieved from http://psychcentral.com/lib/9-ways-to-reduce-anxiety-right-here-right-now/
[5] 3. Starkey, D. (2015). The Top 10 Reasons to Breathe Yourself to Better Health. Retrieved from https://realwellnessdoc.com/2015/05/06/stop-breathing-and-start-singing/
[6] Mayo Clinic at fn. 1

Quick Guide to Neurofeedback

NF Quick GuideQuick Guide to Neurofeedback

Hello everyone, I am one of FEO’s Neurofeedback Technicians. I love this job because I get to help clients achieve their goals and diminish symptoms with which they have suffered for years. Some of these symptoms may include sleep issues, social hinders, migraines, depression, anxiety, ADD/ADHD, and memory loss. I feel so lucky because I get to see people come in longing for help and watch them leave a happier, more collected person!

Neurofeedback is pretty high-tech stuff, but I will try to give as simple of an explanation as I can. Neurofeedback is the study of analyzing the speed of neural cells and how fast they are firing from one cell to the next.  Basically, we are looking at the electrical activity of the brain. We can identify neuronal abnormalities such as anxiety, depression, ADD, and ADHD, and then correct them with neurofeedback. How do we do this, you may ask? We record a brain map called an E.E.G. and then create a customized training protocol to help that specific client.

Brain Maps

A brain map is a report that is generated from collecting data from the brain.  We collect the data by putting an electro-cap (looks and feels like a swimmers cap) on the clients head.  19 small round sensors cover the cap. Each of these sensors reads the brain activity of a particular part of the brain and our computers record this information.   From there, the lab prepares a report based on the data collected and generates a report for our doctors.   The report includes colorful pictures of the brain that correlate to what is going on in the brain.  It shows what areas are firing too quickly or too slow, or areas where the brain waves are too high or too low. After analyzing the report, our doctors meet with each client individually to discuss the findings and create a protocol for them.

Brain Training Sessions

After the doctor creates a protocol, I take over and set the client up for their brain training session. A session comes in many different forms. The main purpose of the neurofeedback session is to exercise the brain and make it more flexible. We can achieve this goal through a variety of different means:

  • watching a movie
  • relaxing with your eye closed
  • listening to music
  • playing virtual arcade games.

During these trainings, the client receives sound or visual rewards. The rewards encourage the brain to maintain the desired level.  (The level correlates to the brain map findings.) After being rewarded, your brain will learn how to gain more rewards and eventually your brain will embrace and want the new levels. That’s why neurofeedback is successful over 90% of the time!

Neurofeedback can help with many conditions, including:

  • sleep disorders
  • chronic fatigue
  • memory loss
  • ADD/ADHD
  • migraines
  • obsessive compulsive disorder (OCD)
  • fibromyalgia
  • post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD)
  • anxiety
  • depression
  • traumatic brain injuries
  • concussions

To learn more, visit our main website at www.balancingyourchemistry.com or our neurofeedback-specific website at www.brainbalancingandneurofeedbackcenter.com.

I will be back next month to go more in depth about neurofeedback, stay tuned!

Author: Klinger, Missty. February 19, 2015

Just the DNA PleaseFunctional Endocrinology of Ohio
Akron: 2800 S. Arlington Road,Suite 100, Akron, Ohio 44312 (330)644-5488
Independence: 6200 Rockside Woods Blvd.,Suite 100, Independence, Ohio 44131 (216)236-0060
Dr. Keith S. Ungar, Dr. David Starkey, Dr. Andrew Kender, Chiropractic Physicians