Saturday, November 5, 2016

Pulse Meter And Autonomic Nervous System

I'm sure everyone looks at this in a different way than I do.  I'm talking about our pulse rate and how I use the pulse meter to monitor my health.  I'm especially concerned with the health of my autonomic nervous system, not just the pulse rate.

I'm going to attempt to try and explain what I look at and see when I use the pulse meter.  My goal is to improve my overall health, not just take one reading and extrapolate it into conclusions for all parts of my life.  It is extremely important to know your pulse rate among other key factors of your health.

Going to a doctor and having them check at that moment is never enough.  It only shows you what is happening to you in that single moment. 

How do we know what is going on each day if we've oblivious to what is taking place within us.  I have found that as much as I think I know what is happening, a pulse rate or blood pressure check can often show something quite different.  Our bodies and our minds are not always in sync with one another.

Most of what I am writing about is what I have learned.  If you find something that you know is not quite accurate, please - please - leave a comment and help give me some reference material where I can learn more.  I've had to figure this out on my own using my own life's experiences, so I'm sharing what I know. 

Please don't use this as a medical diagnosis because I'm not qualified to do that in anyone.  You would need to consult your medical provider for questions you may have.

Here's the three key things that I look at when I use the pulse meter on myself or on other clients.

  1. Pulse Rate - When I look at this, I'm looking for where the reading is at and then comparing it to where it is after some deep relaxation or trauma release work or even breath work.  In many cases, this number will change, but a healthy autonomic nervous system will have the pulse come down with the work I just referenced.  If the pulse stays high (90 to 100 or above) and does not come down, this is something that needs attention.  It is not healthy for a pulse rate to stay high.  At one time, my pulse rate remained in the high 90's, but with deep trauma and autonomic nervous system work, it has now come down to a more health level.

    One thing I have seen is that in some people the pulse rate is very low and in my mind, that does not seem any healthier than the individual with a high pulse rate.  It is like the autonomic nervous system is exhausted or that's how I view it and see it.  You almost have to push the person up into a higher energy state, to get past the autonomic drag as I would view it. 

    Knowing where your pulse rate is at any given point is key to understanding what is going on deep within you.  Even in situations where I have had nightmares and I put the pulse meter on my finger, I've found out that my pulse isn't showing what I feel biologically is happening inside of me.  Often the two things are disconnected.  Don't assume that what you think you feel is actually what is going on within you.

  2. SPo2 - The oxygen level of your blood is key to so much.  Oxygen is required to help carry nutrients to the cells so that waste can be carried from them.  If your oxygen level is low, than your blood will not be doing all that it needs to help your cells function in your body.  If I am correct, it will affect your energy levels and ability to deal with things from day to day.  It will set you up for physical ailments and situations that can pull you down even further. 

    Many of us don't breathe properly.  We don't fully utilize our breath in a day.  Due to overwhelming stress and a failure to go in and release old traumas, we tend to hold our breath because we are in survival mode.  More often than not, we don't even realize just how much we hold our breath or keep our breathing shallow.  The more we do this, the less overall oxygen we have in our blood. 

    The oxygen level is a key indicator of where someone is with respect to the autonomic nervous system and how much residual trauma is still impacting them in a biological way.  If you don't know what you're levels are, you are missing a key component of your healing and your life.

  3. Pulse Wave Form - While not every pulse meter has this feature I don't believe, it is another key component of the health of the autonomic nervous system.  If you start to watch the wave form continuously on yourself and other people, you'll start to see patterns emerge.  I always picture the healthy pulse wave form being gentle rolling ocean waves.  I don't want them too high and peaked because it would be like a ship on some very stormy waters.  I want the wave forms to be robust enough to help me sail through my day. 

    The gentle rolling waves reminds me of peaceful waters on the ocean where things are more smooth sailing. The pulse waves are steady, but about the same height.  They are rolling and evenly spaced.  Each one just rolls on to the next one without any thought given as to how it happens.  So when I see this, I know that the body is in a more relaxed and calm state, not suffering from intense trauma triggers in that moment. 

    Most likely if you put a pulse meter on your finger, you would see that the waves are all over the place with some high and some at different levels.  However, if you take a few moments and focus on your breath or just relax and turn off the thoughts, you would see something different if you checked it again.  The wave form should typically should be more relaxed in a healthy state.  However, if your body is reeling from the after affects of painful experiences and stress in life, it may not automatically even out, until you've released that which is built up within you.  

Even readings that seem normal at this moment can change.  We all go through experiences that brings up triggers and past memories or experiences.  When these show up, our mind body adjusts to them in trying to regain balance.  It may be nice to read our different levels and think that we are fine, but this would be an illusion because life is a process of moving forward, not a one time event.

Often we need to engage in deep trauma healing work that releases from the core of the body so that these things don't impact us biologically, mentally, and emotionally.  If we don't do this,  you can quickly see with a pulse meter, the impact and effect they have upon your body.  Our nervous systems have elasticity to them, but if you stretch that rubber band too far, something is going to break.

You can also have a great impact upon your pulse rate and blood pressure just through your thoughts.  Unfortunately, this is often temporary if you are still feeding the beast with the unresolved trauma, stress buildup and past experiences still acting as host to your mind and body.

The pulse meter is a tool to help you understand your body more.  We as humans are much more disconnected from what is happening within us than we realize.  The more you explore these concepts, the more this will be an eye opening awareness.  It is a simple tool that if you learn how to use it and read it, you can be in much greater control of your life and health.

Pulse meters are much cheaper today than they once were.  One of the ones I use is pictured above.  If you click on the following link for the PULSE METER, you will see what it is.  They are simple to use, but I think they are something that should be a standard item of personal care each day.

While I know others look at pulse rate in a more medical setting, I look at it through the eyes of the health of the autonomic nervous system.  When this system is in good health because built up stress, past trauma and experiences are not weighing it down, then your overall mind and body and spirit are in good health.  You find balance at that moment which brings you deep peace, joy, and awareness.

Blog Post And Images (c) 2016 by Don Shetterly
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Blog Post And Images (c) 1/01/07 by Don Shetterly
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