The Intricate Nervous System: Its Role in Health, Well-being, and Radiant Skin
You hear the name “nervous system” a lot. Most of the time, it comes with statement “Calm your nerves”. But do we know enough about it considering its importance to our well being? The human nervous system is a powerful, fascinating, and even a complex web of neurons, synapses, and pathways that operate behind the scenes of our very own senes, every action we make, every emotion we feel, and every thought we think. Take a second to absorb this. This internal system is so important that it controls our external interactions with the outside world, constantly processing and reacting while transmitting signals to our environment. What happens when our nervous system is our of balance?
Decoding the Nervous System
Let’s break down the two main subdivisions of the nervous system.
- The central nervous system (CNS): The captain for the entire body; consists of the brain and the spinal cord. It is responsible for interpreting sensory information and dictating motor responses, and basically is the body’s decision making hub. The CNS is very detailed, making it a crucial component for ensuring our survival, behavior, and interactions with the world around us.
- The peripheral nervous system (PNS) acts as a messenger, transmitting data across the body and sending feedback to the CNS. This system is crucial for transmitting commands from the brain to the body and sending sensory feedback to the brain for interpretation and action.
A Balanced Nervous System is the Secret to a Grounded Life
In a perfect world, our nervous system would be calm and balanced. Considering the world we live in today, the chaos, uncertainty, and transformations, we often push this system into a "fight or flight" mode, which, though evolutionarily vital, can be detrimental when persistently activated. Before we can reach to a calm nervous system, we must first learn how to get there. When our nervous system is in the right place, it not only ensures optimal physical functioning but also mental and emotional balance. This is what we want!
The effect of a disturbed nervous system
Hormonal Imbalance: Continuous stress leads to excessive cortisol production. While beneficial in the short term, sustained elevated levels can instigate mood swings, fatigue, and even depressive tendencies.
Digestive Issues: An agitated nervous system can cause our digestion to go haywire, manifesting as bloating, constipation, or irritable bowel syndrome, and even sometimes weight gain. This is relatable for a lot of us, especially women.
Weak Immune System: Chronic stress dampens our immune defenses, making us more prone to infections and illnesses.
Mental Stress and Fatigue: Persistent stressors can pave the way for mental health challenges, from anxiety and depression to cognitive difficulties.
Poor Sleep: It becomes challenging to achieve deep, rejuvenating sleep stages, leading to insomniac tendencies or poor sleep quality.
Low Libido: Prolonged stress can cause a dip in sexual drive due to hormonal fluctuations.
Skin Issues: Stress directly affects our skin, leading to breakouts, dullness, and even accelerated aging. A calm nervous system supports skin health, ensuring it remains vibrant and resilient.
Ways to feel Balanced, calm, and in the right mindset.
Embrace Mindfulness: Daily meditation, even if brief, can significantly mitigate stress, instilling a sense of serenity.
Breathe Deeply: Engage in deep breathing techniques to activate the parasympathetic nervous system, fostering a relaxation response.
Engage Physically: Consistent exercise, particularly in nature, diminishes stress and triggers the release of mood-enhancing endorphins.
Limit Stimulants: Cutting down on caffeine and sugar can aid in tempering anxiety and ensuring a more stable nervous system.
Prioritize Sleep: Cultivate good sleep hygiene. A consistent routine and a conducive environment are essential for restorative sleep.
Nurture Connections: Human interactions and heartfelt conversations can induce feelings of belonging and safety.
Seek Guidance: For persistent stress or trauma, consulting a therapist or counselor can be immensely beneficial. They offer personalized strategies to navigate challenges.
Our nervous system, with all its complexity, is remarkably receptive to nurturing practices. By recognizing its profound impact on our overall health, mental well-being, and skin vitality, we can take proactive steps to maintain its equilibrium. Embracing a holistic approach to well-being ensures we live not just longer, but healthier, more radiant lives.