How to Lower Stress Levels: 7 Simple Tips to Stress Less

How to Lower Stress Levels: 7 Simple Tips to Stress Less

It seems like there’s always something to stress about. Whether it’s at school, work, home, or even with friends and family.

Things start to weigh on your shoulders and it can be easy to freak out, but it can also be easy to calm down.

Continue reading for 7 tips on how to lower stress levels.

1. Control What You Can

This sounds easier than it is, but that’s because it can be hard to remember that we don’t have control over every situation. But letting go of small things throughout your day can keep a lot of stress off your shoulders.

2. Get Outside

Have you ever felt calm while sitting by the ocean? Have you ever gotten distracted while looking at the sky?

That’s because getting outside reduces stress levels, and it’s an easy, free way to reduce yours when you have the time.

3. Do Something Physical

This helps you get out of your head and back into reality.

It can be simple, like coloring or playing a video game, or it can be bigger. Calling a friend, reaching out to someone, or folding that laundry you’ve been staring at for days might be good places to start.

4. Clean Something

Speaking of folding laundry, cleaning your house is another great way to relieve stress.

A study from the University of Indiana found that those with clean houses had better mental health than those with a messy space.

5. Just Breathe

It sounds cheesy, but it’s true. Breathing exercises are one of the best ways to help calm the body. It signals your brain to slow down, and then calm down.

Here are two exercises to try:

  • Deep belly breaths: You breathe deeply so your stomach expands and contracts with each inhale and exhale.
  • Counting: Inhale for 4 seconds, hold for 7 seconds, exhale for 8 seconds. Count while you do it and repeat as much as you need.

6. Accept That You Cannot Control Everything

We’ve come full circle.

Accepting that you cannot control everything plays right back into you controlling what you can. You may not be able to stop that 3 o’clock meeting, but you can control how you approach it.

You can’t control the things people say to you, but you can control how you respond. You can’t control all the mishaps throughout your day, but you can control how you choose to react to them. You can also control how you spend the rest of your day as a result.

7. Be Kind to Yourself

You may not always remember these tips when you’re stressed, but it’s important to not beat yourself up for forgetting. We all have an internal dialogue, and we can control how we speak to ourselves.

It’s easy to forget that we’re allowed to treat ourselves with kindness when others don’t. The stress, whether self-inflicted or passed on to you, is not deserved. While you should honor your feelings, you should also know when to let them go.

What If These Tips on How to Lower Stress Levels Don’t Work?

If these tips on how to lower stress levels begin to feel like they’re not working, remember that help is always available.

Whether you call a friend, family member, or decide to reach out to a professional, you should feel comfortable in every situation. If you’re curious about therapy or want to know what AJ Therapy Center can offer you, contact us today or check out our wellness blog today.

3 Critical Signs You Should Seek Help for Mental Health Issues

3 Critical Signs You Should Seek Help for Mental Health Issues

Mental health affects us all. 

Whether or not we realize it, our mental health dictates our emotional wellbeing as well as our energetic ability to perform certain tasks. More and more, people are saying that it’s just as important to care for our mental health as it is our physical health.

But mental health issues are complicated. Often, if someone is suffering from poor mental health, they might be too embarrassed to seek help or have told themselves that would be too much of a burden on other people.

Also, mental health services are expensive, so many people wait until something can no longer be ignored to get help.

Below, we’ve compiled a list of 3 signs you should not wait any longer to get assistance. Read more about them below!

1. You Have Thoughts of Suicide or Homicide

This should be your number 1 red flare. 

If you feel your life is no longer worth living, or that the only way out of a situation is to harm yourself or someone else, you should seek help immediately. 

You may do so by either contacting a hotline, admitting yourself to the hospital or reaching out to a counselor or psychiatrist.

You can also contact the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline at 1-800-273-8255. If you don’t feel like talking on the phone, you can text the Crisis Text Line.

2. You Are Having a Difficult Time Completing Tasks

Do you feel like you’re always running on empty?

Is it becoming increasingly difficult for you to complete tasks because you feel you have no energy for them? 

This is actually a very prominent sign of several mental health issues, including major depressive disorder. Not feeling our emotional best is energetically taxing, leaving us with limited energy to complete our daily responsibilities.

In general, if anything in your life has reached a point that it interferes with your ability to complete necessary tasks, it is time to seek treatment. 

3. You Have Lost Interests Due to Mental Health Issues

Does the world feel numb and gray to you, no matter what you do? Do the things that used to bring you joy now no longer hold the same happiness?

If this sounds like you, you may want to get treatment

It’s important for us to have interests and things we love to do. If the rest of someone’s day has been very difficult and stressful, they can offset some of the difficulty through the things they love. 

Many people who suffer from mental health issues report feeling as if everything has lost interest and meaning to them. This can contribute to feelings of hopelessness and desperation.

You Are Not Alone

If you’re feeling this way, it’s easy to think you are alone. After all, other people often seem to live happy lives and do not seem to struggle in the same way.

Please know you are not alone.

In fact, at least 20% of Americans report experiencing mental health issues each year. And those numbers are likely higher because those are just the people who came forward. 

If you’re in need of medical services, please check us out today!

Pain After a Car Accident? 5 Common Injuries With Delayed Symptoms

Pain After a Car Accident? 5 Common Injuries With Delayed Symptoms

These are the commonly delayed symptoms after a car accident.

Motor vehicle crashes can cause widespread chronic pain that takes days to notice. According to a study, 60% of participants experienced an increase in areas suffering from pain. The change in body regions took effect within six weeks to one year of the crash.

Pain after car accident incidents is a common issue. Keep reading to learn more about what could be wrong. Here are the top five injuries with delayed symptoms.

1. Neck Pain

Neck pain after car accident injuries is one of the most common problems. Whiplash is from the jolt of impact stretching, straining, and damaging tendons in your shoulders and neck. You may notice the pain immediately, or it could take a few days for symptoms to appear.

2. Back Pain

Back pain after car accident incidents is commonly experienced, most often from being struck on the side or rear. The discomfort itself can be a symptom of a herniated disk, whiplash, spinal injuries, or other medical problems. Other signs of a back injury could include headaches, loss of balance, and difficulty breathing.

3. Concussion

Concussions happen when your brain hits your skull’s interior. It can happen when you strike it against something, or it can result from a forceful change in motion. Symptoms include headaches, dizziness, mood swings, changes in appetite, and sensitivity to light or sound.

4. Internal Bleeding or Clotting

It’s common for internal bleeding and clotting to go unnoticed for a few days after a car accident. If left untreated and without proper rest, these complications can become life-threatening for you. Headaches, along with other side effects, are a top sign blood clots have reached the brain.

5 Mental Health Changes

When you’re in a car accident, you need to be aware of how it affects your mental health. Severe crashes can result in PTSD in young children, adults, and the elderly. You may find yourself avoiding driving altogether, and you may end up developing anxiety or depression as a result of the auto accident.

Other Delayed Pain After Car Accident Symptoms

It’s common to have delayed pain from a car accident injury. You could experience the mentioned side effects or something else entirely. Other symptoms you should be aware of include the following:

  • Headaches
  • Numbness
  • Changes in cognitive function
  • Physical limitations
  • Abdominal pain
  • Swelling
  • And more

There are three million people in the US injured in auto accidents per year. If you’re experiencing side effects from an accident, you should reach out for an expert’s opinion. You can schedule an appointment today.

Improve Your Health

You can address symptoms to give your health a boost. Delayed symptoms are a common issue after vehicle crashes. This guide will help you decide what to do when you have pain after car accident injuries.

There are other ways we can encourage your healing. Our team provides physical therapy services after an accident. Contact us to learn more about how we can alleviate side effects.

The Importance of Attending Car Accident Physical Therapy

The Importance of Attending Car Accident Physical Therapy

If you’ve been in a car accident physical therapy could play a major role in your recovery. Sometimes called PT, this prescribed exercise program can improve mobility, reduce pain, and improve your overall quality of life. 

You don’t have to sustain major injuries in order to benefit from physical therapy. And, even a mild car crash can result in discomfort days or weeks after your wreck.

Keep reading to learn more about the big benefits of attending PT following a car accident – whether you think you need it or not!

Reduce Pain

In many cases, physical therapy after a car accident can do more to reduce pain and discomfort than doctor-prescribed medication. And, it’s a non-addictive long-term solution for chronic conditions – making it a surprisingly safe and reliable alternative.

Because physical therapy targets specific muscle groups and soft tissue, gently stretching and exercising them, it helps to strengthen your body. These repetitive exercises also improve circulation and decrease inflammation, two of the major contributors to pain following a car crash.

Your physical therapist may also use methods like massage and electrotherapy to reduce pain at the site of your injury. 

Support a Full Recovery

In addition to pain, you might experience weakness, discomfort, numbness and tingling, or a loss of mobility following a crash. Car accident physical therapy can help with these symptoms, too!

Improving your flexibility and motion can help you get your life back following a major injury, giving you the strength and confidence to return to sports and other activities that you enjoyed before the crash. Depending on the extent of your injuries and symptoms, this might also include targeted therapy for atrophy and muscle loss

While it may take multiple months, regular PT sessions will eventually result in a higher quality of life post-accident. You’ll have to be patient, but it’s nearly guaranteed to pay off! 

Prevent Surgery

One of the biggest benefits of physical therapy for a car accident is the potential ability to postpone or remove the need for surgery altogether. This is especially true if your injuries were minor, or involved soft tissue rather than bone. 

Because physical therapy can help strengthen your muscles, tendons, and ligaments; it also acts to protect and strengthen various structures throughout the body. This can help to rebuild some soft and connective tissue that would otherwise require surgical intervention.

In some cases, victims of extreme accidents develop conditions that require surgery months or years after the crash. Regular PT sessions can help prevent some of the painful and debilitating symptoms that eventually force sufferers to go under the knife. 

Bounce Back With Car Accident Physical Therapy

Now that you know a bit about car accident physical therapy, you’re probably wondering if it could benefit you personally.

Contact us today for a free consultation. Our appointment desk is happy to help with any unanswered questions, schedule your first session, and get you in touch with the closest and most convenient of our locations.

AJ Therapy Center proudly serves the Tampa and St. Petersburg areas.

Find the Best Physical Therapy in Tampa

Find the Best Physical Therapy in Tampa

Getting the help of a physical therapist is absolutely necessary if you happen to get into a car wreck. By touching base with professionals who can help rebuild your body, you’ll regain your mobility, strengthen your muscles, and heal from injuries. 

So how can you find the best professionals for the task?

If you’re looking into physical therapy in Tampa, consider the points in this article. 

Start With a Physician’s Visit to Learn the Extent of Your Injuries

First things first, take the time to get a physician visit so that you can learn the extent of your injuries. It’s often physicians who refer their patients to physical therapists that can continue the care that they need. 

Many people often deal with neck injuries and back injuries as a result of car accidents. Whiplash can create lasting effects, and lower back pain can make it difficult to return to work. 

The doctor will run scans to properly diagnose your injuries. This way, you’ll know whether you need surgery or if physical therapy care will help. 

Search for the Highest-Rated Physical Therapy Programs in Tampa

Once you know that a physical therapist will be helpful in healing you, it’s time to find the best clinic in the Tampa area. Look into the reputation of any physical therapy clinic that you’re deciding to do business with. 

They should have glowing reviews around the web and should be able to give you references from patients who have been satisfied customers. When you talk to some physical therapy clinics, ask them about their clientele and what they specialize in.

Some work with vehicle accident patients, while others focus their care around helping athletes heal from injuries. 

Take a Visit to Their Facilities

Before signing up for service with a physical therapist, take the time to visit the clinic. Get the lay of the land for their facilities so you can figure out if they have the equipment that’ll help you most. 

For instance, many physical therapy clinics have massage therapy tables so that patients can get pain relief, increased blood circulation, and eased anxiety. Some physical therapists also specialize in things like cryotherapy, paraffin bath, therapeutic exercise, ultrasound therapy, and individualized rehab plans. 

Aside from their technology, make sure that the facilities are always kept clean and in great condition. 

Get to Know the Staff, Their Remedies, and How Much Each Visit Will Cost

Talk to the staff members to make certain they have the professionals that can give you the best care. Ask about the remedies they’ll offer and how much their services will cost. 

Consider your medical insurance plan to see if you can offset the cost of physical therapy and instead pay a small co-pay. 

Look Into Physical Therapy in Tampa

Consider these points when you’re looking for physical therapy in Tampa. There are several physical therapists you can do business with, so leave no stone unturned when doing research. 

When you’re looking for the best physical therapy in Tampa, we’d be happy to help you out. Take the time to contact us via the web or call us at (813)402-2079.

5 Coping Mechanisms for How to Deal With Anxiety

5 Coping Mechanisms for How to Deal With Anxiety

When it comes to mental illness in the United States, you’d be surprised to find that it is fairly common. GAD, or General Anxiety Disorder, affects about 7 million people in the US, or about 3 percent. 

And Social Anxiety Disorder (SAD) affects even more people at almost 7 percent of the population. With so many that suffer from anxiety, it makes many people’s lives difficult.

At any moment you can be triggered and experience an anxiety attack. But here are five ways to help cope with your anxiety.

Coping Mechanisms

With every problem, there is a solution, and your anxiety is no different. If done in tandem, these coping mechanisms can help to better your control of your anxiety.

Breathing Techniques

Sometimes all you need is simplicity. To relax your heart and mind, slowly inhaling and exhaling can help. You can also use the ’10 technique’ count slowly up to ten and repeat.

Panicking is specifically linked to your heart rate and can cause a host of other issues. If you can gain control of your heart rate in stressful situations, managing your anxiety becomes easier

Regularly Exercising

Regular exercise can help you gain control of your anxiety through the channeling of your stress. Running or even contact sports like boxing can help you release your anxiety productively. 

If this seems difficult to do alone, you can always schedule an appointment with us, and we can help you to create a productive regimen through our physical therapy sessions in Tampa and St. Petersburg.

Maintaining A Healthy Diet

Sometimes it’s not about what comes out, but all about what goes in that count. Creating and maintaining a healthy diet can help mitigate feeling fatigued, a symptom of anxiety.

Eating energy-boosting foods can also help keep your energy positive. Positive energy goes a long way to help fight your anxiety.

Learning What Triggers You

Triggers can come from anywhere; they can be obvious things like caffeine, drugs, or alcohol, or they can be deeper issues pertaining to Family, work, or even your negative thoughts.

Figuring out what causes such negative responses can be a good way to effectively deal with your anxiety. This can be done on your own or with a licensed professional. Attacking your triggers head-on can help lead to a more positive lifestyle.

Acceptance

Of all of the coping mechanisms, this could be the most difficult but the most rewarding. Acceptance of your anxiety can be an arduous process. 

However, if you dedicate time daily to building toward the acceptance alongside the other things on this list, this can help you to lead a positive and fulfilling life and can lead to mastery of your anxiety.

Your disorder should not define who you are as a person.

Mastering Your Anxiety

Anxiety can be difficult to manage, but it is not impossible. Using these methods and others that can fit your journey, you can find ways to properly cope with your anxiety. 

We at the AJ Therapy Center believe in you. If you have any questions or you need help you can contact us here. We are always here to help.