Dr. Kassam 5 Tips to Avoid a Burnout
5 Tips to Avoid a Mental Burnout
Written by: Dr. Saira Kassam, ND
Mental health is a state of well-being and is just as important as your physical well-being. This week is mental health week, hosted by the Canadian Mental Health Association (CMHA). It is aimed at raising awarenss and educating individuals on various mental illnesses. In today's society chronic stress can have a big impact on one's physical and mental health. Did you know that long-term stress increases the risk of mental health conditions like stress, anxiety, sleep problems and substance abuse? Today, lets talk about how to best handle stress!
How many times has someone asked you what the plans for the upcoming weekend are and all you desperately want to say is “NOTHING, JUST REST”. We all know that is never the case with all the birthdays, baby showers, bridal showers, family dinners, soccer games, etc. that require our presence and attention. It’s no wonder burnouts, also known as adrenal fatigue are so common these days. The fact of the matter is we take on more than we can handle, devoting our time and energy to those around us and forgetting to take care of ourselves - physically & mentally. Putting our needs on the backburner has almost become second nature to us.
What exactly is a burn-out? Medically speaking, Cortisol is a hormone that is released from the adrenal glands to give us energy in times of stress. Cortisol keeps up with the energy demands by breaking down carbohydrate and protein stores. Short term, this is actually quite protective, however, in the long run, this forces your adrenal glands to go into overdrive leading to insulin resistance, a weakened immune system and muscle breakdown. Soon enough, our cortisol levels drop because it just simply can’t keep up with our body’s demands and we go into a state of chronic fatigue. In lamen’s term's a burn out is a state of chronic exhaustion where you feel helpless. It is associated with physical, emotional and mental withdrawal. It's that feeling when you can’t cope up anymore.
It is so important to listen to your body when it is screaming for some serious R&R! Here are my 5 tips to help you avoid that burn out to protect our mental health.
It is important to listen to what your body is trying to tell you and respect its wishes. So if you are tired, just relax and say no, don’t overextend yourself. Balance activity with rest. Remember self-care = happiness!
The advice in this article is for informational purposes only. It does not replace the care of a Naturopathic physician.
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