Stress is a natural response to pressure, and seen positively it can bring out the best in us, provided that it is interspersed with periods of calm.
Our resistance to stress can be impaired through trauma, long-term stress, chronic or frequent illness, nutritional deficiencies, allergies, and digestive problems. During periods of stress our bodies use up nutrients faster than normal, and unless these are replaced our nervous system becomes progressively depleted, further reducing resistance, and tghus creating a vicious circle.
During times of pressure, to boost the nervous system, increase essential fatty acids, vitamins B, C and E, and minerals calcium, magnesium, and zinc through diet or supplements. Avoid refined foods, sugar and caffeine. Take tonics to support the nervous system: vervain, skullcap, wild oats and ginseng.
Tension or anxiety is a normal response to a difficult situation, which should settle once the problem is resolved. However, through extreme or long-term stress it may become habitual, though the original causes of it have passed. Stress related physical problems may develop, such as stomach and bowel problems, high blood pressure, allergies, and skin problems. Take teas or tinctures of either vervain, skullcap, wild oats or ginseng 3 times daily to support a depleted nervous system. Add either chamomile, limeflower, valerian, hops or passionflower to soothe the nerves and relax tense muscles. Drink teas of lemon balm, chamomile, lavender or limeflower instead of tea and coffee to help digestive problems and enhance resistance to infection and allergy. Take hot herbal baths and massage, using relaxation essential oils of either lavender, rose, chamomile, or geranium. Inhalations of frankincense will calm and deepen breathing.
There may be a simple physical explanation for depression, e.g. hormone imbalance in PMS/premenstual tension or post-natal depression, allergy, or nutritional deficiency. Tt is often related to debilitation due to chronic illness, stress or digestive problems. Take wild oats, skullcap, vervain and ginseng daily, as teas or tinctures, to lift the spirits and replace essential nutrients. Drink tea made from a mixture of rosemary, vervain, dandelion, and cinnamon 3 times daily for debility and depression following illness. Add either lemon balm, damiana, borage, St John's Wort, basil or wood betony to soothe the nerves and brighten the mood. relaxing herbal baths and massge with oils of either lavender, chamomile, bergamont, rose, or clary sage can be uplifting.
The most obvious causes are tension, anxiety and stress through being run-down, overtired, overworked, ion pain, having digestive problems, allergies, candiadiasis, nutritional deficiencies, jet lag, too much caffeine, or a lack of fresh air and exercise. A warm herbal bath before bed with strong infusions or oils of either limeflower, lavender, chamomile, neroli, or rose will relax tense muscles and an overactive mind. Massage is also wonderfully beneficial. Take a cup or two of tea, or 1-3 cups of tincture of either limeflower, chamomile, catnip, lemon balm, or hops before bed (or use sleep pillows of these). For a persistent problem try teas or tinctures of either passionflower, valerian, or skullcap with a little licorice, and repeat if you wake. Continue nightly until you develop a good sleeping pattern and gradually reduce the dose. Take a combination of wild oats, skullcap, vervain, and rosemary as hot herbal teas 3 times daily if you are very tired and run down. Avoid all caffeine.
Headaches and migraines may be warning signs of stress or fatigue, but they are also related to women's hormonal problems, allergy, pollution, candidiasis, nutritional deficiency/poor diet, high blood pressure, low blood sugar, liver, and digestive problems, alcohol, eye strain, and back problems. A warm herbal bath with strong infusions or oils of either lavender, peppermint, or marjoram will relax muscles and soothe pain. Massage, particularly of the head and neck, and feet, and inhalations can bring swift relief. As a preventative take, either as a mixture or individually, teas or tinctures of feverfew, meadowsweet, wood betony, and rosemary 3 times daily. For tension, especially in the neck and shoulders, add either rosemary, valerian or cramp bark. For menstrual problems add devil's bit/false unicorn root, or vitex. For stress and anxiety add either chamomile, vervain, skullcap, wild oats or pasque flower. At the first signs take teas or tinctures of passionflower, feverfew, rosemary, or wood betony and repeat as necessary. Inhale lavender or rosemary oils or massage them into the temples. Warning Headaches may indicate potentially serious, albeit uncommon, problems.
Your vitality may be low through chronic stress, anxiety or overwork, or insomnia, long-term illness, recurrent infection, drug therapy, poor diet, low blood sugar, allergy, candidiasis, anaemia, or old age. Take, as teas or tinctures, a conbination of wild oats, vervain, licorice, and skullcap to enhance recovery from stress. Or take bitter tonics dandelion and burdock combined with echinacea, red clover, and nettles, also as teas or tinctures, if you are run down from illness or long-term drug therapy. You may need to add a soothing digestive tonic of a mixture of slippery elm, comfrey, rosemary, and plantain to help put back essential nutrients. Garlic and sage aid the immune system and help fortify the nerves.
Inflammation of a nerve can cause excruciating pain. To ensure recovery the cause of the pain needs to be identified and treated by a doctor. Take a combination of ginseng, wild oats, wood betony, vervain, and licorice as teas or tinctures, if you feel tired and run down. If you feel tense and your muscles tight, take, in the same way, a combination of skullcap, valerian, cramp bark, and wild yam and add either passionflower, black cohosh, or St John's wort if you are in a lot of pain. If the area feels hot or inflamed and there is infection (e.g. shingles) add echinacea, golden seal, and licorice. If your circulation is poor and you feel cold, angelica root and ginger will bring blood and nutrition to the area. If your bowels are sluggish, either licorice, fennel, rhubarb, or ginger will help eliminate toxins. Where there is pressure or a nerve from a spinal problem, consult a osteopath or professional in massage or bowen therapy. Add infusions or dilute oils of either ginger, lavender, peppermint, chamomile, or rosemary to hot herbal baths, or you can use them for liniments or compress. St John's wort oil specific for damaged nerves and neuralgia is wonderfully pain relieving and can be gently massaged in. Warning Weakness or paralysis require immediate medical attention.