FAQ068: Why do I ask you about STRESS during your physiotherapy assessment?

If you do a poll of the next five people you talk to, I bet that at least three of them would say that their stress levels are high. Stress seems to be all around us it seems. Now I’m not going to go into some of the theories of the crazy Western lifestyle. But we’re busy! Life happens! And unfortunately, sometimes stress is unavoidable.

During your physiotherapy assessment, I will ask you about stress.

When you come into STAVE OFF for a physiotherapy appointment, that is the first time I get to learn about you! I want to know who you are, what your life is like, and what caused the injury you’re coming in to see me for. One of the ways that I do that is by asking about your stress levels.  Stress gives me an indication of where you are putting your resources. Is it to fight fires or do you have a bit more time to work on exercises that I might give you? Where are your priorities? High stress might mean you’re taking care of a loved one.

Our body has a hard time differentiating between physical and mental stress!

There was an amazing book that I read (that I really should go back to) that was called “Why Zebras Don’t Get Ulcers” by Nicholas Sapolsky. In this book, he talks about our modern world and how our systems aren’t set up for the new stresses we have. It was fantastic! One of the takeaways though is that if we are under a lot of stress at work, our body sees that as preparing to run away from a predator. We go into fight-or-flight mode.

I know for me, when my stress level goes up, so do my old injuries. They flare up and I have to recognize where it’s coming from. My system is just a little beat up. It also affects my ability to recover.

Enjoy the video and if you have any questions, send us a message on the contact form!

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Christina Prevett

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