Doctors, nurses, and first responders have always acted as a bulwark for society in times of trouble or disaster, but it has taken the gravest public health crisis in living memory to truly recognize and appreciate their exceptional contribution. The COVID-19 pandemic has led to unprecedented disruption and enormous challenges, both in social and economic systems, and is expected to introduce long-term changes in daily lives and business practices. “While the world is learning to fight this disease and adjust to a new normal, frontline and essential workers do not have the luxury of relaxing, dealing on a daily basis with increased workloads, longer hours, and exposure to high-risk patients or customers,” comments prominent cardiologist and stress expert — Dr. John M. Kennedy. “Our society should be aware of the physical, mental, and emotional toll this pandemic is taking on healthcare professionals, first responders, and employees of essential business and help in any way it can so that we succeed in resolving this crisis.”
As a cardiology specialist with more than 20 years of experience, Dr. John M. Kennedy, is deeply familiar with the effects stress can have on physical and mental well-being. Recognizing that frontline workers are at higher health risks, he has developed a simple, accessible stress-relieving technique to help them cope better and continue to do their vital work. BREATHE, as his seven-step program is called, has been tested with doctors, nurses, and firefighters and has been found to lower stress levels during short work breaks. Dr. John M. Kennedy, says, “BREATHE helps elicit the relaxation response opposite the stress response, leading to a measurable fall in heart rate. Combining guided imagery, conscious controlled breathing, and positive self-talk, the sequence helps users stimulate their parasympathetic nervous system, which causes the heart rate and blood pressure to fall. Taking short work breaks and practicing relaxation exercises like the BREATHE sequence may have lasting effects and even lower cardiovascular risk.”
Easily accessible through a smartphone app, the natural stress reduction technique created by Dr. John M. Kennedy, is one example of how everyone can pitch in to help frontline workers in these enormously challenging times. It is critical to support these professionals because the immense and unprecedented pressure they experience daily can “lead to burnout; trigger the onset of common mental disorders such as depression and anxiety or post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD); result in unhealthy behaviors like using tobacco, alcohol, or other substances, which may lead to substance use disorders; result in frequent absence from work or reduced productivity while at work, or increase the risk of suicide among frontline workers, particularly health care workers,” according to the World Health Organization (WHO). This, in turn, “may mean compromised quality and safety of care, breach of protocols and guidelines, increased risk of infections, and compromised capacity of the health system and emergency response teams,” the WHO points out.
Dr. John M. Kennedy is a recognized cardiologist who currently serves as medical director of preventive cardiology and wellness at Marina Del Rey Hospital in California. His professional affiliations include Kindred Health Care South Bay (Gardena, CA), Providence Little Company of Mary (Torrance, CA), and Memorial Hospital of Gardena (Gardena, CA). John Kennedy, MD, is also a prominent stress expert, devoting a large portion of his time to studying the impact of stress on cardiovascular health. His insights in this field have provided the basis for two popular books: The Heart Health Bible and The 15 Minute Heart Cure. In the first one, the preventative and interventional cardiology specialist presents his five-step plan for preventing and reversing heart disease, while the second one focuses on the effect of stress on the cardiovascular system and introduces BREATHE, the natural stress reduction technique developed by Dr. John M. Kennedy.
John Kennedy, MD – Renowned Cardiologist, Author & Speaker: http://johnkennedymdnews.com
Breathe With Dr. Kennedy: https://breathewithdrkennedy.com
Dr. John M. Kennedy Reviews the Most Common Stressors and Their Effect on Health: https://sports.yahoo.com/dr-john-m-kennedy-reviews-190500098.html
John Kennedy, MD, Outlines the Cardiovascular Benefits of Natural Stress Reduction: https://news.yahoo.com/john-kennedy-md-outlines-cardiovascular-004500297.html
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