Performance anxiety, panic attacks and sensitivities to smells may all stem from the same issue-vagus nerve disengagement.
The vagus nerve, or the 10th cranial nerve, is the longest nerve in the body. It runs from the hypothalamus area of your brain, and goes through the throat, thorax, , chest, diaphragm, abdomen, and intestines. The vagus nerve innervates all the organs of the body and wraps around the heart and core of the body. Significantly, it interfaces with the parasympathetic system and helps the body to relax. The vagus nerve helps control the heart and digestive system.
The vagus nerve activates the branch of the autonomic nervous system, the parasympathetic nervous system (PNS), which manages the relaxation response, the health of immune cells, organs and tissues. Specifically, the vagus nerve serves as a communication channel between the brain and various body systems to regulate heart rate, speech, sweating, blood pressure, digestion, glucose production, and certain aspects of breathing. The vagus nerve forms an electrical circuit linking the heart, lungs and gut to the brainstem. This circuit connection is ancient and is also found in birds, mammals, reptiles and amphibians.
One critical role of the vagus nerve is to reset the human body after stress or a perceived threat to one’s life. This feedback system gets activated after an internal alarm or the fight, flight or freeze response is engaged. The vagus nerve, when properly energized, communicates that the stress is over or threat is gone so the body can function in a healing mode. In some people, the stress reaction can cause disorders in the vagus nerve, which may lead to vagus nerve to disengage. Vagus nerve disorders arise when the nerve is either under- or overactive. An underactive vagus nerve results in a drop in the heart rate and severe gastrointestinal problems, nausea, heartburn, stomach pains, stomach spasms and weight loss because the digestive system lacks the chemicals it needs to break down food. An overactive vagus nerve can result in fainting.
Energy balancing can be used as a treatment of under- and overactive vagus nerve disorders. Balancing the energy to the vagus nerve helps re-engagement of the vagus nerve so that the body can go back to a healing mode. Here are three things that will balance the energy to the vagus nerve:
- One can hold the 2nd and 3rd chakras at the same time because vagus nerve disorders interrupt the communication between the 2nd and 3rd The 2nd chakra is just below the navel and the 3rd chakra is between the navel and the sternum. If you hold these two chakras at the same time, you will connect the energies of the chakras for optimal communication.
- Take deep breaths. Breathing deeply can bring immediate results but may not be long lasting.
- Stretch the neck. By creating more space in the neck area, the energy will be able to flow better and restore energy to the vagus nerve.
I highly recommend a visit to an Energy Medicine Advanced Practitioner to assess the vagus nerve disorder and develop a strategy for handling the specific vagus nerve disorder in the moment of stress.
Dr. Anne M. Deatly, previously a research scientist, is the Director of E Quantum Breakthroughs (www.energizeforjoy.com) -uncommon solutions to common problems. E Quantum Breakthroughs’ mission is to use energy to help people be their best physically, psychologically, mentally, emotionally, spiritually, and energetically.