How Physical Therapy Can Help You Recover Faster

Physical Therapy MN works to heal injuries and chronic conditions that affect movement. They can help you reduce pain and improve balance, among other things.

The best therapists take the time to understand their patients and listen to their concerns. They are also resourceful and willing to try new treatments.

physical therapy

Exercises make up a big part of physical therapy sessions. They improve your mobility, coordination and muscle strength. Your therapist will show you how to do these exercises during your appointments and then encourage you to do them at home, too. These will help you recover faster and get back to doing the things you enjoy most.

Muscle-strengthening physical therapy exercises can be simple movements like toe raises or arm rotations or more complex movements using equipment like resistance bands or light weights. The goal is to increase your muscle strength to decrease pain, reduce stiffness, and enhance your ability to perform daily activities.

Balance and coordination exercises focus on the interaction between your body’s muscles and nervous system. They can be as simple as standing on one foot for short bursts of time or more complex movement such as beginner’s yoga.

Endurance exercises are done for longer durations and engage larger overall muscle movements. They are usually a later stage in the therapeutic exercise program when the patient is stronger and has a higher tolerance for activity.

Stretching exercises are low-intensity movements that warm up and loosen the muscles. They are important for everyone, even those who don’t have injuries or aches to stretch out their muscles and joints. Keeping up with these simple, self-care movements can help reduce soreness and prevent future pain or discomfort.

Manual therapy is a hands on technique used to assess, diagnose and treat musculoskeletal injuries/conditions. It includes the passive movement of a joint within or beyond its active range of motion (mobilization), manipulation and soft tissue mobilization/massage. Techniques can be classified as being joint-biased, muscle and connective tissue-biased, or a combination of both. The goal of manual therapy is to decrease pain, improve joint mobility and soft tissue health, increase muscle length and improve nerve mobility.

There are many different techniques to accomplish these goals and they may vary from person to person depending on their condition, needs, lifestyle, and therapist preference. A physical therapist must have a strong knowledge base and skills in many manual techniques to effectively treat all patients.

Some therapists prefer to use a more holistic approach and look at the entire body when treating patients. This allows them to restore the balance of muscles that function together and to see how other structures or systems may be contributing to the patient’s symptoms. For example, some therapists view the piriformis muscle tightness as an imbalance of a chain of events and would rather restore proper sacroiliac or lumbar joint function than just stretch the piriformis.

The best therapists are highly trained in the evaluation of complex injuries/conditions and understand that there is often a mental component to injury recovery. They meet the patient where they are at and guide them through their anxieties as a part of the healing process.

Heat is used in physical therapy to relax stiff muscles, decrease spasms, and increase the flexibility of the affected area. It also increases circulation to the injured area, which helps with healing by bringing in oxygen and nutrients to the damaged tissue.

A therapist may use a commercial heat pack or apply moist heat, such as from a heating pad or a hot water bottle wrapped in a towel. Moist heat penetrates deeper into muscle tissue and is more effective than dry heat.

Typically, your therapist will wrap a hot pack or heating pad in several layers of towels to prevent burns. The therapist will apply the pack to the affected area for 15 to 20 minutes or as directed by your doctor. You should not use heat for long periods of time because this can cause erythema ab igne, which is characterized by mottled and discolored skin.

Heat modalities are beneficial when used in conjunction with proper stretching, rest, good posture and supplemental exercise during physical therapy. They are a first-line treatment for many soft tissue (musculoskeletal) injuries and conditions.

Cold therapy is a time-tested method for obtaining relief from muscle injuries and pain. As part of the RICE (rest, ice, compression, elevation) treatment strategy, it helps reduce swelling and alleviate pain. It also impedes nerve pain signals and decreases muscle spasms.

Physical therapists commonly use ice packs to treat acute injuries. They also employ a variety of cold therapy products such as sprays, gel packs, and systems. These products are designed to help patients recover from injury and pain without the use of prescription medication.

The application of cold temperatures causes vasoconstriction, narrowing of the blood vessels. This increases the amount of fluid in the area being treated, which lowers inflammation and pain. The icing technique is also an effective treatment for reducing bruising around joints and muscles.

When used in conjunction with heat therapy, alternating hot and cold therapies accelerate the healing process of damaged tissue. Heat therapy increases the skin’s temperature, causing blood vessels to widen and improve circulation. This brings nutrients to the damaged area and carries away wastes, facilitating healing.

However, hot therapy should not be used on stiff joints or muscles and people with poor blood circulation. It also should not be used on people with dermatitis, diabetes, vascular disease, or deep vein thrombosis (unless under professional supervision). This can cause burns and damage. The same is true of the cold, so it is important to take a gradual approach to using these treatments.

Therapeutic ultrasound is a form of mechanical vibration that facilitates healing at a cellular level. It can be used to warm the tissue, increase circulation and relax muscle and connective tissue to reduce pain and promote healing.

Ultrasound therapy is a common tool in physical and occupational therapy for musculoskeletal injuries. When used properly, this treatment can help to alleviate pain and improve mobility. It can also reduce the risk of scarring or adhesions that can lead to chronic pain.

During an ultrasound treatment, our physical therapists will place a small probe on your skin and apply a transmission gel. These ultrasound waves can be felt on the surface of your body, but they cannot be heard. These sound waves produce microscopic bubbles near your injury that expand and contract rapidly. This process is known as cavitation, and it can help to improve your blood flow and accelerate the healing of damaged tissues.

Ultrasound can be used to treat a wide range of conditions. It can be used to alleviate pain and swelling from some sports injuries, and it may help to speed up the recovery time for certain chronic conditions. It can also be used to deliver drugs directly into the tissue, a process known as sonophoresis. This technique can be used to deliver medication such as lidocaine or cortisone. This can be useful when the site of injury is numb or inaccessible.

Electric stimulation is a safe, effective treatment technique that may help to relieve pain. In the clinical setting, the therapist places self-adhesive electrodes on the skin in and around the targeted treatment area. These electrodes are connected to a device through wire leads and allow electricity to pass through and communicate with sensory and motor nerves.

The electrical impulses from the electrodes cause a depolarisation of an intact motor neuron, resulting in muscle contraction. In some cases the therapist will stimulate multiple muscles at once (known as electrical muscle stimulation, or EMS) to perform more comprehensive training. The electrical impulses can also elicit an innate and completely natural analgesic effect by stimulating sensory nerve fibers that interfere with pain signals being sent to the brain.

There are many different modes of electrical stimulation that physical therapists use. Your therapist will decide which type is best for you. They include transcutaneous electrical nerve stimulation (TENS), interferential, pre-modulated, Russian, and symmetrical or asymmetrical bi-phasic.

While e-stim can feel uncomfortable on higher settings, it should never be painful. It should always feel similar to flexing or working out a group of muscles. A common complaint is that the skin under the electrode feels irritated, but this is rare and can be easily treated with soothing lotions. Rarely, if the electrical stimulation is applied too intensely to an injured tissue, it can cause a burn on that site.

Massage Therapy

Massage Therapy for Pregnant Women

Pregnant women can often benefit from massage therapy. The extra strain on muscles and ligaments can be decreased or alleviated through prenatal massage. However, it’s best to get your doctor’s approval at This is because too much pressure on the legs can dislodge a blood clot, which is risky for expectant mothers.

Massage Therapy for Pregnant Women

Pregnancy is an exciting time for any woman, but it can also be stressful for the body. One way to help alleviate stress is through massage, which can be beneficial for expectant mothers at all stages of pregnancy.

In addition to relieving back pain and other common aches and pains, prenatal massage has been shown to increase circulation and relax the muscles, which can help relieve tension headaches. It can also improve sleep patterns and reduce swelling in the legs and feet. Having an open line of communication with your OB-GYN and a skilled massage therapist will ensure that the best course of action is taken throughout each stage of your pregnancy to get the most out of this therapeutic treatment.

Most prenatal massages focus on the lower back, hips and neck since these areas can be most affected by the weight gain and swelling that occurs during pregnancy. The uterus pushes on the muscles of the pelvic floor and lower back, which can cause them to swell, and it can also put pressure on the nerves in the lower legs. In many cases, sciatic nerve pain can be reduced through prenatal massage.

Massage can also increase the elasticity of the joints, which can be helpful in reducing discomfort during labor and delivery. Studies have also shown that massage can regulate hormone levels, which can help reduce the risk of prenatal depression and anxiety.

A well-trained prenatal massage therapist will avoid certain spots on the body, like the leg veins, that are at higher risk for a clot. They will also avoid putting too much pressure on the abdomen, which is not safe for most expecting women.

While any licensed massage therapist can perform prenatal massages, it is important to choose a therapist who has specialized training in maternity massage. A qualified therapist will understand how to adjust the table, how to position the client and what positions to avoid during each trimester. They will also know how to address any issues that may arise during the session, such as if the client starts to feel dizzy or faint.


Pregnancy is a time of dramatic physical change. The extra weight puts stress on joints and the center of gravity shifts, which can cause pain in the back, neck, abdominal muscles, and legs. Massage helps relieve the tension and improves circulation. Massage can also ease sciatic nerve pain, which is a common condition in late pregnancy. This is caused by the uterus resting on muscles in the pelvic floor and lower leg, causing them to swell. The resulting pressure can cause pain in the foot, ankle, and knee area.

Prenatal Massage is a gentle form of bodywork that uses safe and effective techniques to improve a woman’s well-being. It is not a replacement for medical treatment, and should only be performed under a doctor’s supervision. Massage is safe for most pregnant women, although it is important to avoid massage in the first trimester.

In the second trimester, it is safe to receive a prenatal massage, but the therapist should avoid the areas around the ankles and a few of the toes (big, second, and baby). Pressure in those areas can dislodge blood clots, which can lead to an embolism and are dangerous for the mother-to-be.

A prenatal massage is typically done side-lying with a full body pillow or a special cushion that supports the belly and chest. Depending on the size of the woman, sessions can be 60 or 90 minutes long.

If you are considering a prenatal massage, it is important to find a massage therapist with training in this type of work. While any licensed massage therapist can, theoretically, perform a prenatal massage, it is best to find a specialist. You should also ask about the qualifications of the therapist, such as whether she has received specific training in antenatal massage or is certified by a recognized association. A prenatal massage can be a great way to alleviate physical discomfort and prepare the body for labor and delivery. However, it is important to discuss risks with your physician before you start receiving massage treatments. Women with high-risk pregnancies, such as those with preeclampsia or pregnancy induced hypertension, should not receive massage.


Pregnancy puts a lot of stress on the mother-to-be’s muscles, especially in her back and lower abdomen. This can cause aches and pains throughout the body. A trained prenatal massage therapist knows where these sore spots are and can help relieve them. They also know which techniques and areas to avoid, as well as how to use pillows and cushions to support the body. These precautions help ensure the safety of the mom-to-be and her baby.

One of the most important things a woman can do before getting a prenatal massage is to discuss it with her doctor. The obstetrician will let her know if the massage is safe and can help decide what position she should be in during the session. In addition, the obstetrician may be able to recommend a therapist who is specially trained in pregnancy massage.

The best position for a pregnant woman during massage is side-lying. This is the recommended position by doctors and midwives to allow for optimal fetal circulation. Many maternity massage therapists have special tables that can be adjusted to accommodate the client in this position. They may also use specialized pillows to support the pregnant woman’s head and body.

In late pregnancy, a woman may suffer from sciatic nerve pain. The pressure of the enlarged uterus causes the pelvic and leg muscles to swell, which in turn puts pressure on the spinal nerves. During a prenatal massage, the therapist can help relieve this tension by massaging the legs and the back. This helps to relieve the nerves and ease the discomfort of sciatic nerve pain.

A specialized maternity massage can also be used to reduce swelling and alleviate the pain of varicose veins. This type of massage involves using special techniques to manipulate the legs and feet. The therapist can also apply heat to the legs to reduce inflammation and ease the pain of the swollen veins. Some maternity massages even include foot reflexology to improve blood flow and circulation.


Prenatal Massage is a type of therapeutic body work designed specifically for pregnant women. The massage can help alleviate many of the common discomforts that come along with pregnancy, such as back pain, swollen legs and feet, stiff neck and shoulders, and achy joints. It can also reduce stress and increase the overall comfort level of the client.

The sessions are usually conducted in a comfortable, quiet environment. The client is asked to disrobe, and the therapist covers the woman’s body with a sheet, except for the area being worked on. The session can last from 30 to 120 minutes. The costs vary depending on the length and the facility where the massage takes place.

A good prenatal massage therapist will be familiar with the techniques that are appropriate for each trimester of the pregnancy and what kind of pressure is safe for a woman who is expecting twins or more. The therapist should also be aware of the woman’s overall health status and know whether she is experiencing any early signs of labor, such as swelling of the face or hands, or having contractions that are too strong.

Some health insurance policies cover prenatal massages. These types of massages can be billed to the client’s health savings or flexible spending account, and they are tax-deductible. A massage therapist may require a written prescription from a doctor or midwife before treating the patient.

Most doctors agree that a prenatal massage is safe for most pregnant women, but they may recommend waiting until after the second trimester to receive one. The first trimester is considered the riskiest time for miscarriage, and the therapist should avoid the abdomen, hips, knees, ankles, and feet.

The circulatory changes that occur during pregnancy make the woman at higher risk for developing blood clots, which can be dangerous to both mother and child. Deep tissue massage and other forms of intense rubbing could potentially dislodge a blood clot, which is why it is important to choose a therapist who is experienced in prenatal therapy. It is also a good idea to discuss the decision to get a prenatal massage with your healthcare provider, especially if you have a history of DVT or blood clots.


What is Alopecia Areata

Alopecia Areata

Alopecia affects men and women of all ages. It usually begins in early childhood, teenage years, or young adulthood. It can appear on the scalp, but it can also occur on other parts of the body including the eyebrows, eyelashes, and fingernails. Go to for more information.

Many people with alopecia have a family history of the condition or other autoimmune diseases like thyroiditis and vitiligo (a disorder that causes patchy whitening of the skin). Alopecia can be emotionally distressing.

Alopecia areata is an autoimmune disease, which means your immune system mistakenly attacks parts of your body that grow hair. Your immune system attacks the follicles on your scalp and other areas that grow hair, causing the hair to fall out. It also can attack your eyelashes, eyebrows, and arms and legs. The attack usually doesn’t destroy the follicles, so your hair often grows back. In some cases, it progresses to baldness or complete loss of body hair (alopecia universalis).

You have a greater chance of getting alopecia areata if someone in your family has it. The condition can happen at any age, but it starts most often in childhood, adolescence, or young adulthood. It affects men and women equally. It is more common in people with a family history of thyroid disease, vitiligo, or Down syndrome.

Scientists aren’t sure what causes alopecia areata. But they do know that genes play a role. One study of more than 1,000 alopecia areata patients found that there were certain genes, called PDE5A and PPARGC1A, that increased your risk. If you have these genes, you have about a 55% chance of developing the disease. If both your parents have the gene, you have a 90% chance of developing it.

Other genetic factors may contribute to the disease, too. It’s also possible that a stressful event can trigger it, though this is less common. Many people develop alopecia areata after a physical or emotional shock, such as surgery, illness, divorce, or death of a loved one.

Your doctor can diagnose alopecia areata by looking at your scalp or other affected areas of the body for bare patches. He or she might take a sample of hair and examine it under a microscope for signs of the disease, such as a lack of new growth or an unusual pattern of hair growth.

You may also have other hair problems with alopecia areata, such as “exclamation mark” hairs (short, narrow hairs that get wider toward the bottom) or cadaver hairs (hairs that break before they reach the skin surface). Some people who have alopecia areata can also have fingernail and toenail abnormalities, such as pitting and multiple ridges.


The most common symptoms of alopecia areata are smooth, round patches of hairless skin that vary in size. These patches are usually skin-colored or peach, but they can also be white. The remaining hairs are often short and may have a peculiar shape, such as “exclamation mark” hairs that narrow at the bottom or c-shaped hairs that grow in or around the edges of bald spots. People with alopecia areata may also experience changes in fingernails or toenails, including the formation of pits or grooves in the surface of the nail.

Hair loss from alopecia areata can happen slowly, over the course of several months or years. However, it can also occur very quickly. For some individuals, the disease is only confined to one or two small areas of the scalp. In other cases, it progresses to involve the entire scalp and all other hair-growing sites on the body, such as eyebrows and eyelashes or the beard area and arms. Hair loss from alopecia areata is not painful, but it can be emotionally distressing.

Some people with alopecia areata have a very mild form of the condition, where only one or more areas of the scalp are affected. Often, these patches of hair re-grow without treatment. In other cases, alopecia areata is more severe and the regrowth of hair is slower. Some individuals, however, lose their hair permanently or experience a constant cycle of regrowth and loss.

Cicatricial alopecia, which affects the forehead, temples and other areas of the head, is a more serious form of hair loss. In this condition, the inflammation that destroys hair follicles in some patients also causes scar tissue to form in those same areas. As a result, hair no longer grows in those areas, and the skin may appear dry and flaky, or have a reddish hue.

Many different treatments are available to help promote regrowth of hair in people with alopecia areata. These include steroid injections, which can be done by healthcare professionals using a tiny needle. The treatment can be effective, but it must be repeated regularly to maintain the benefits. Other options for treating alopecia areata are medications taken by mouth and cosmetic products such as wigs and hats.


Hair loss can be a very distressing condition and it is important to seek medical advice to confirm the diagnosis. A dermatologist is best equipped to diagnose the problem and counsel you on what may help regrow your hair. Your doctor will look at your scalp and other areas with loss carefully. He or she may also look at your nails and take a blood test to see if there is any other disease that can cause this type of hair loss.

Your physician will ask you questions about your family history of this type of alopecia and other autoimmune diseases. The family history is important because some of the genetic alopecias are more serious and have a greater chance of passing to other family members.

He or she will want to know if your symptoms have started recently, how much hair has been lost and the size of the patches of alopecia areata. Other questions may be about your other health problems, any medications you are taking and whether or not you have had a history of infections like TB or cancer. Your doctor may want to do a scalp biopsy to make sure that this is the only reason you are losing your hair. This is usually a painless procedure. A sample of the skin is removed and sent to a laboratory for examination under a microscope.

Some doctors may be able to diagnose this problem by examining your scalp for signs of alopecia areata, such as exclamation mark hairs (short hairs that get narrower at the bottom and grow in or around the edges of the bald spots). They may also check under a light microscope for histopathologic changes that show perifollicular inflammation.

Other tests to be done may include a blood test, which can detect if there is any other disease that can affect the hair growth, such as thyroid disease. The blood test can also check to see if you have a low iron count, which can sometimes lead to alopecia areata. In some cases, a fungal culture can be taken to determine if you have a common skin disease called tinea capitus (scalp ringworm). This is more common in women than men.


While there is no cure yet for alopecia, treatment options can help with the appearance of thicker hair. Many people with alopecia areata may benefit from treatments like a scalp micropigmentation (SMP) treatment. In this treatment, a skilled technician uses tiny needles to deposit pigmented dots on the head that appear to give the appearance of thicker hair. The results can be very natural-looking, and the procedure can even cover scars or birthmarks.

SMP can be a great option for those with alopecia areata, and it can also be used to conceal the effects of other hair loss conditions, including male or female pattern baldness or hair loss due to cancer treatments. It is important that patients choose a qualified practitioner, however, and make sure that they are comfortable with the technique before they undergo the treatment.

Alopecia areata can affect anyone, at any age. It is a very unpredictable condition, and some people will experience it for only a few weeks while others will suffer from the disease for their entire life. Alopecia areata often runs in families, so if you have family members who have the disorder, it is more likely that you will develop it as well.

Medications to treat the condition include corticosteroids, immunosuppressants, and medications that stimulate hair follicle growth. These can be taken orally or in injections and may be combined with a hair transplant to increase the chances of success.

Another type of medication is called a Janus kinase inhibitor, and it has been shown to stimulate regrowth in some people with the condition. More research is needed on this drug, but it shows promise and gives hope to those who suffer from alopecia areata.

In addition to these medical treatments, some people with alopecia areata have found that wearing wigs or using makeup can help them feel more confident about their appearance. It is also important that people with alopecia areata continue to attend regular doctor appointments so they can watch for the development of other health conditions or other types of alopecia. It is also recommended that people with alopecia areata consider talking to a mental health professional, as stress can trigger the condition in some cases.


Arts And Crafts Advice To Get Started Today

You are probably thinking about making something out of arts and crafts but then realize you haven’t got the slightest clue on where to begin. Relax, this is where great article such as the one below come in. You will find many good tips that will ease you into the world of arts and crafts. The next step is to keep reading!

If you’ve got a family that loves face painting, try using a q-tip as your brush of choice. The cotton end of a q-tip makes for an excellent brush to paint on a face with. It’s soft and very controllable. You can create great looking cat whiskers and all sorts of funky designs!

Go online to find terrific arts and crafts suggestions. If you want to do a project, there are many sites on the Internet where you can find ideas. No matter who is doing the project or how old they are, you can find something that you can all do by looking online.

Do not make the mistake of believing that you have to pay a lot of money for arts and craft supplies. Try using old scrap materials you have at home for your next project. Things like old cloth, bottle caps and paper bags have all been used to create masterpieces.

Look for ways to turn your craft into a lucrative way to make money on the side. You may find that your crafting skills can also be used as a valuable skill that others would be happy to pay you to do. Woodworkers can fix furniture, people who sew can mend or tailor clothing. This will give you more money to spend pursuing your craft.

With so many different things you can create in arts and crafts, it is a great way to show off your own creativity. Whether you’re designing something for yourself, or making a cool little object for a friend, you will have so much fun coming up with new arts and crafts ideas. Thankfully you just read an article that gave you many great ideas.

You can also visit our other websites and post your article.

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healthy tips

Trending Health Books You Need To Read

A selection of popular health books that will inspire you to learn more about a range of topics. From how to overcome traumatic experiences to mindfulness techniques, these reads will boost your wellbeing and help you become a better version of yourself.

A must-read for anyone who wants to understand the link between gut health and brain function.

1. The Body Keeps the Score

This book is ideal for students who want to understand how trauma can linger even after a person’s memories have faded. It uses the latest discoveries in neuroscience to explain how trauma literally reshapes the body and brain, compromising their capacities for pleasure, engagement, self-control, and trust. It also reveals innovative treatments like neurofeedback, meditation, sports, drama, and yoga that leverage the brain’s inherent neuroplasticity.

Trauma isn’t just an issue for women — men face unique pressures and emotional difficulties that require specific mental health strategies. This book helps them understand their struggles and empowers them with tools they can use to overcome their obstacles.

2. A Mind of Your Own

In this book, the author shares her own journey from working all the time to finding a healthier balance. A great read for anyone who needs a little inspiration to change things up.

The ancient Meditations of Marcus Aurelius have been supporting spiritual exercise and thoughtful reflection for centuries. This new translation breathes life into the original texts, making them accessible for a modern audience.

A must-read for anyone curious about trying therapy or counseling for the first time, this therapist-written memoir demystifies the process while encouraging self-discovery and insight.

3. The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up

The self-care tips in this book are sure to spark joy. Kondo, who’s also the star of the Netflix show Tidying Up with Marie Kondo, shares her KonMari method for transforming messy rooms and lives. She teaches readers how to identify items that bring them joy and let go of those that don’t.

While people casually drop that they’re in therapy all the time now, mental health still has an unfair stigma. This book explores how a history of mistreatment has created this unfair stigma and how understanding your own and others’ mental health can help break it down.

Health and wellness are essential to your overall well-being. Mira is here to support your wellbeing with affordable access to urgent care, virtual visits, same-day lab testing and discounted prescriptions for as low as $45 a month.

4. The Gut Feeling

Call it a sixth sense, a hunch, or simply your intuition—there’s actually something to these gut instincts, and experts say you should listen. “Intuition lets us know if there’s anything wrong,” says Judith Orloff, a psychiatrist who trains UCLA medical students and psychiatric residents on how to use their gut feelings with patients. “Most gut instincts come with some kind of physical sensation.”

Research supports the theory that our brains communicate with the gastrointestinal tract via a neural superhighway known as the brain-gut axis. The same circuitry likely influences the microbiome’s production of serotonin, a neurotransmitter linked to mood and happiness.

To hone your intuition, try keeping an intuitive journal and taking note of the situations when your gut responds. This will help you see patterns like when your intuition was right versus when it was mistaken.

5. The Happiness Project

As a form of scientific research, Gretchen Rubin decided to spend a year trying to maximize her happiness. She gave herself specific, measurable resolutions and tasks to follow. Her book includes a wealth of research, tips and resources you can use to craft your own Happiness Project.

This book examines the science behind the powerful effects of meditation, sleep and exercise on mental wellbeing. It also offers practical techniques to help you break bad habits and start healthy new ones.

Get your hands on these and many more wellness titles that are sure to leave you feeling energized and inspired this year. For even more wellness inspiration, sign up for Mira and enjoy access to virtual primary care, urgent care, and same-day lab testing for as low as $45 a month. Learn more today!

6. You Are a Badass

Jen Sincero’s feisty, sometimes swear-y motivational self-improvement book has been Instagrammed by every blogger and entrepreneur who has read it. It’s easy to see why this New York Times bestseller has taken over: it’s direct, relatable and downright funny.

Badassness isn’t just about being physically strong or mentally tough, though those are important traits. It’s about having a strong sense of purpose and believing that you have the power to make your own life better. If you don’t believe in yourself, you can’t convince others to do the same. This book encourages readers to get over their bullshit and start living the life they deserve. It starts with making your bed every morning, which will set you up for success all day long. You might be surprised at how far this little task will take you.

7. Why Zebras Don’t Get Ulcers

For wild animals, stress is episodic (like running away from a lion), but in humans chronic stress is more likely to lead to illness. The reason is that over time, stress can cause the brain to stop producing important neurotransmitters needed for normal bodily functions like keeping blood pressure in check, lowering cholesterol, and increasing hippocampal neurogenesis.

Renowned primatologist Robert Sapolsky’s book, Why Zebras Don’t Get Ulcers, explains how modern society’s high levels of stress contribute to a variety of ailments such as ulcers and depression. His book is a must-read for anyone looking to improve their health and wellbeing.

8. The Power of Positive Thinking

Whether you want to overcome a panic attack or simply build a life of joy, the first step is understanding how your thoughts affect your emotions and how your emotions impact your actions. This book is a must-read for anyone who wants to take control of their health.

This classic by Peale is about transforming your mindset through the power of positive thinking. It teaches you how to break the cycle of fear and negative thoughts by embracing affirmations, emptying your mind and more.

Oftentimes mental health books come across as dry and academic, but this one is not. Brass combines medical research with anecdotes and humor to create an easy-to-read book that is both informative and relatable. It is also a must-read for anyone who is suffering from stress or burnout. He explains the symptoms of chronically high levels of stress and how to close the stress loop by prioritizing your mental health.

10. The Wellbeing of Nations

While “sustainability” and “sustainable development” are key concepts for global policymaking, they often provoke glazed eyes and lip service, according to researcher Robert Prescott-Allen. To reenergize and sharpen them, he proposes broader and more precise yardsticks of health and progress—indices that measure human and ecosystem well-being on a country-by-country basis.

The authors present their new indices in vivid geopolitical maps, with results for the world overall and a wide range of regions. Seventy color-coded indicators combining health, wealth, education, communication, peace, freedom, and a sustainable environment produce the Human Wellbeing Index (HWI) and Ecosystem Wellbeing Index (EWI).

These indices challenge traditional development thinking that focuses on economic growth. They show that to achieve a high level of wellbeing, all nations need to pursue a broad agenda: wealth, social justice, and a healthy environment are inextricably linked.