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Ideas for working with the body in mental health

Given that our bodies experience the symptoms associated with mental health issues, it makes sense that we can also use our bodies to help us regulate our emotions and promote mental health. Some examples of effective ways to do this are:

Exercise: 
Exercise promotes mental and physical health and has been shown to be as effective as antidepressants for mild to moderate depression. It is fantastic for lifting mood, relieving anxiety, maintaining physical health and encouraging nerve cell connections in the brain, which contributes to good mental health. It can be used as a health maintenance strategy as well as an emotion regulation technique. For example, vigorous exercise such as jogging on the spot or doing star jumps in short bursts can really help with feelings like anger or anxiety as it helps to discharge the chemicals associated with those strong emotions.

Maintain Regular Circadian Rhythm: 
Our brains and bodies function best when there are predictable sleep, wake, activity and meal times. While there is some individual variation, each of these functions involve its own set of biological processes which function optimally at particular times of day, so it helps to stick to a routine.

Sleep: 
Even though it can be tempting to try to fit more into your day, it’s really important to prioritise sleep, as sleep is where our brains and bodies heal and regenerate. It is also how experiences and emotions of the day are processed, and how learning occurs, so it’s a very important biological process. Try to go to bed and wake up at about the same time every day and aim for at least 8 hours’ sleep. If you’re having trouble sleeping, make sure you create a sleep routine which involves reducing physical and emotional stimulation for several hours before bed and eating earlier in the

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