The vagus nerve is the 10th cranial nerve and also the biggest and longest. It distributes from the head and neck into the thorax and abdomen.
Although it is called the vagus nerve (singular) it actually runs down both sides of the body and connects the brain to all our organs.
The vagus nerve also controls muscles in our neck and therefore is involved with swallowing and responsible for some of our reflex actions, such as coughing, sneezing, and vomiting.
Vagal tone refers to the activity of the vagus nerve and is a fundamental part of the parasympathetic (rest and digest) nervous system – the part of our nervous system which is not under our conscious control. The ‘tone’ of the vagus nerve is important. Having higher vagal tone means that our bodies can relax faster after stress, digest well, sleep better and generally function on a higher level all round.
Symptoms of an imbalanced vagus nerve include:
- Digestive disturbances
- Emotionally sensitive
- Unable to relax
- Irregular/rapid heart beat
- Feeling faint/dizzy
- Coughing or the need to clear your throat
- A voice that is hoarse or croaky
- Stress incontinence
- Stressed out – tired but wired.
The symptoms experienced can depend on what part of the nerve is effected.
Vagal tone can be assessed by monitoring our heart-rate alongside our breathing rate. Our heart-rate speeds up slightly when we breathe in, and slows slightly when we breathe out. The bigger the difference between the two, the higher your vagal tone is balanced. Kinesiology is able to test for vagal nerve tone and apply corrections to restore balance.
How Can Kinesiology Improve Vagal Tone?
Within Kinesiology we can manually stimulate and support the vagus nerve tone with:
- Specialised massage techniques
- Ileo-caecal valve and digestive balancing
- Microbiome resetting
- Testing supplements such as zinc, omega oils and probiotics.
Gut health is key for emotional health and emotional health is key for gut health
As the vagus nerve is one of the biggest nerves sending signals in both directions connecting your gut and brain, gut health is key for emotional health and emotional health is key for gut health. Therefore looking at emotional stress release techniques to clear and balance emotions is also crucial.
Upset and trauma can remain in the cells of our body long after we have consciously let go or ‘put it to the back of our minds’ Kinesiologists have powerful tools to release these loaded emotions from continuing to wreak havoc within the cells of our body whether we are consciously aware of them or not. Here are some ways to help yourself.
Self help techniques:
- Cold water face wash
- Deep slow diaphragmatic breathing
- Gargling and humming
- Clean diet
- Massaging the neck and feet
- Microbiome resetting
With every Kinesiology session the vagal tone can increase and the above suggestions can also help.
So, increasing the Vagus nerve tone is the key to many health problems and Kinesiology can be the winning formula to achieving this.