What Is Health and Wellness, and Why Is It Important?
By Dr. Molly Casey
What is wellness care when speaking in reference to chiropractic? This is a phenomenal question that leads to a much deeper conversation. Let’s start with the definition of wellness as defined by Merriam-Webster’s online dictionary. Wellness is “the quality or state of being in good health.” This is characterized by an actively sought goal of lifestyles that promote health.
In my experience, folks in today’s society generally think of health and wellness as eating well and exercising, and not being in pain or having symptoms. Maybe folks expand their thinking to include drinking more water than coffee and alcohol -- and throw in a target weight for good measure. Perhaps the most conscientious include trips to the doctor for baseline labs for yearly tracking.
It’s comical to me that most individuals agree that without their health, they have nothing. They understand a life with minimal health is much more difficult. Yet, having been in practice for more than 12 years, I’ve also noticed that very few people have a well-formulated definition of wellness and what constitutes it. So first, if the rest of life is dependent on one’s level of health and wellness, why don’t most individuals have a clearer personal definition of it. Second, without a clear definition of what health and wellness is, how can one engage with it?
Chiropractic, Health and Wellness
Optimal health requires an optimally functioning nervous system. The nervous system is comprised of the brain, spinal cord and the miles of nerves that exit the spine. This is the body’s communication system. The brain talks to every single cell, piece of tissue, and organ throughout the system. Your level of health and wellness can only match the highest level of functioning of the nervous system.
The spine and skull house the central nervous system, which consists of the brain, spinal cord and nerve roots. When the spine is restricted in range of motion, it can negatively affect the function of the communication system. An optimally functioning spine facilitates proper communication flow at the most foundational level.
Wellness is a journey, not a destination. While in one moment the spine may be functioning optimally and your nervous system at full tilt, in the next moment you may fall victim to the rigors of time. The spine undergoes the stress of daily living: traumas and cellular stress from toxicity of food and life, as well as mindset and emotional stress. The body is a machine, and so long as we continue to live and breathe, the machine has a certain level of stress simply from existing. Maintaining optimal levels of functioning in your communication system provides your body the best opportunity to experience optimal health. If you’re breathing, get your spine checked and adjusted regularly to improve the quality of your health and life -- to achieve optimal wellness.
Conversations about definitions of health and wellness are important. Health requires active engagement. The world is changing, the food is changing, our daily lives are changing, and all of these changes affect our ability to be as healthy as possible. We need to be reading and talking about this health and wellness and what it means to us individually. We need to be engaged if we if we want to be as healthy as possible and maintain the greatest level of wellness for our system. See the chiropractors at The Joint Chiropractic and let us help you help you achieve your best health and wellness.
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