How do you typically approach the new year coming in? Do you get anxious or nervous? If so, what are the things that make you feel this? We know the earth continually spins daily and nightly, progressing through time. Whether or not you are ready for what happens as the world turns, it will continue moving. Understandably, it's normal to experience nervousness or anxiety about what may happen in the new year. Life can bring many challenges, and we decide how we respond as we face varying experiences. The ebbs and flows of existence do not stop, but we can grow to higher levels of thinking and being through adjusting our responses. It's a great time, as any time, to reflect. In your reflection, you can move forward in a space conducive to your well-being. Remember that when you give your best to yourself, you can be your best to those around you!
Every time a new month, new year, or even a new day presents, we have an opportunity to restart and reboot. There will be moments where an occurrence causes significant adjustment or change to get through. One thing to remember in your heart is that you are NOT alone. Life brings sun and flowers to ALL and rain and clouds to ALL. Both are a part of life balance and growth. Whatever season is current in your reality, understand that your outlook through it is where you will find your grounding. Creating consistent self-care practices and checking in on your mental health status is imperative to living at your best. If life seems too heavy, seeking a professional to help navigate is okay.
How Does Mental Health Affect Hair Health?
Why does our mental health affect our hair health? Everything within the body results from chemical reactions, energy, and electrical signals traveling through our bodies to achieve the most straightforward functions. Your central nervous system controls your body's "fight or flight" response. When your stress and anxiety levels are high or unmanaged, your body sends signals to your brain, and in turn, stress hormones release. Your body reacts to these stress hormones as an emergency, causing your heart to rev up and blood to rush to the most essential organs. The body doesn't consider your scalp/hair a vitally important organ, so our hair can suffer when under high stress and anxiety levels.
Below are a few examples of conditions you can suffer from with unmanaged stress and anxiety:
Telogen Effluvium: Stress can push hair follicles into a "resting" phase so they don't produce new hair strands. Over time, hair can fall out more quickly, even if you're washing, combing, or touching it. Poor nutrition and changes in hormone levels can also cause telogen effluvium.
Alopecia Areata: Not caused explicitly by stress; however, it is an autoimmune condition that attacks the hair follicles and can be heightened when under stress and high anxiety.
Trichotillomania: A psychological condition where people deal with negative emotions, like stress and anxiety, by pulling hair from the scalp, face, and other parts of the body. Most commonly seen in teenage girls.
These are just a few stress-related hair conditions to be mindful of. Our authentic community recognizes that taking care of yourself holistically will ultimately result in healthier hair. Walking in nature for ten minutes up to three times a week can help ease the mind and reduce stress and anxiety. Sitting in a quiet space focusing on deep breathing is another great way to decompress. It may seem impossible to achieve with life's tasks and schedules; however, to be our highest self, we must treat ourselves as such. Tasks and schedules will always present themselves to be fulfilled, and you want to be your best while doing so.
Questions to ask to check on your mental health status:
How do I feel about myself and my position in life?
Am I overly fatigued at the end of the day?
Have I felt more sad than happy lately?
What did I accomplish this year that I'm proud of?
What am I looking forward to?
Ask yourself often how you're feeling by using specific questions. Allow yourself complete honesty and put some thought into your examination. Ultimately, when you are your best to yourself, you can be the best to those around you. Please share this article with someone who may need it. Thank you for reading!