The Mind-Body Connection

The mind is a powerful thing, and the body is a powerful vessel.  Knowing the fierce connection between the two, they are truly powerful allies. The mind-body connection relates to how our health problems can affect our emotions, and how our psychological state can affect how well we treat, manage, or cope with our physical issues. Even simpler, how we think can effect how we feel, and how we feel can effect how we think.

As a social worker in the addictions and mental health field, I easily recognized and concluded very early on in my career that addiction and mental health issues are symptoms of something deeper. I have never met someone who has “just an addiction,” nor have I met someone who is depressed “just because,” it simply does not work that way. I have worked with hundreds of client’s suffering from depression and anxiety while also struggling with chronic pain and fatigue.  In turn, I have worked with client’s who suffered from debilitating migraines and misused alcohol in order to deal with flashbacks from childhood abuse.  Although their stories are different, the commonality of their underlying symptoms not related to their presenting issues, is truly remarkable.

With new research circulating through the medical field, many physicians are beginning to understand how their patient’s psychological state can influence their physical well-being. We know that depression and stress significantly reduces one’s immune system, particularly during difficult times of the year, like winter. Speaking to your doctor about your mental and physical health is vitally important, as well as to your Better Health Clinic practitioner. Evidence also supports that talking to a trained counselling professional about your issues and concerns, all within a non-judgemental and supportive environment, is conducive to a healthier you; improved psychological functioning equals improved quality of life.
 
In joining the Better Health Clinic team, a new pathway has been created, a holistic and integrated approach to your care. Our hope is that by introducing psychotherapy into our repertoire of services, if you suffer from chronic illnesses, pain, depressive or anxiety symptoms, you can now easily reach out for help and find the support you need. The mind-body connection is real, and we must start listening to what it’s trying to tell us.

The next time you have a stress head ache, a new and on-going pain, or you notice that you are spending more time in bed than usual, stop and ask yourself, what else could be going on?  Visit the Better Health Clinic to support and nurture your whole-self.

About the author ...

Jordan Smith received her Masters of Social work from the University of Toronto, specializing in both mental health and addictions. Jordan is focused on compassionate, strength-based, and client-centred care all while using a motivational and recovery-orientated approach.