What is Stress?
Stress is a feeling of emotional or Physical tension. It is one of the major problems of the modern generation. Most people are stressed. People are so much troubled of stress and they want to avoid it all the time. They dream to live a stress-free life. But not all stress is bad. It can Keep you Productive and get things done immediately. Everyone in this world has to deal with stress at some point in their lives.
People who are unable to manage stress have to face different health problems like headaches, stomach pain, sleeping disorders, illness, and depression. Whether in good times or bad times, most people say that stress interferes at least moderately in their lives. Stress is a Physical, Mental, or emotional factor that causes mental tensions to people.
An example of stress is the pressure to finish the project on time or giving a speech in front of a huge crowd or your emotions before going to an interview. Stress can affect all aspects of your life, including your behavior towards the other people, your feelings and emotions, your ability to think in a calm manner.
Our bodies are designed to control stress up to some extent and not all stress is bad. Stress can help you accomplish tasks and prevent you from dangers. It can make you more aware of things around you and keep you more focused.
What Causes Stress?
Stress is different for everyone. What stresses you out may not even bother your best friend or other people. For example, you are not good at maths and you feel stress whenever there is a maths test in your class but your friend who is a topper in your batch will write the maths tests without feeling stress. There are two types of causes of stress
- Causes of Work stress
- Causes of Life stress
Causes of Work Stress:
Work stress is a harmful Physical and emotional response that can happen where there is a conflict between job demands on the employee and the amount of control an employee has over meeting those demands.
Causes of Work stress include:
- Feeling Unworthy about you in your Organization.
- Having a heavy Workload or too much responsibility.
- Working overtime.
- Having poor management and unclear expectations of your work.
- Working under dangerous conditions.
- Risk of termination
- Giving speeches in front of colleagues
- Facing Harassment or discrimination at work
Causes of Life stress include:
- The death of a loved one
- Loss of a job
- Increase in Financial obligations
- Getting Married
- Moving to a new home
- Chronic illness or injury
- Emotional Problems such as depression, anxiety, anger, grief, guilt, and low Self-esteem.
- Taking care of an elderly or sick family member.
- A traumatic event, such as natural disasters, theft, rape, or violence against you or a loved one.
What are the Symptoms of Stress?
This photomicrograph revealed the presence of, thin, septate, hyaline or glass-like hyphae, from which numerous, thick-walled arthroconidia have sprouted. The arthroconidia measure 3 x 4.5µm, and are barrel-shaped.
When a person inhales the conidia, which develop at an extracorporeal temperature of 25oC, this dimorphic fungal organism undergoes a morphologic transformation into this spherule form, when exposed to an internal temperature of 37oC, forming spherules, and it is within the spherules, which measure 10 80µm, that the infective endospores are contained.
How is coccidioidomycosis treated?
Symptoms from the acute infection may resolve on their own without treatment. However, some doctors prefer to prescribe antifungal drugs, such as fluconazole, to treat patients with acute, uncomplicated coccidioidomycosis. There is not enough information about whether treating acute, uncomplicated pulmonary coccidioidomycosis is beneficial or not, although many experts feel that persons at risk for developing severe disease should receive treatment. Antibacterial drugs do not treat coccidioidomycosis.
In more severe infections, treatment with antifungal drugs is necessary. People who have pneumonia from coccidioidomycosis affecting both lungs, people who have disseminated disease, and people who have chronic pneumonia all need treatment.
Stress can affect all aspects of your life, including your emotions, behaviors, thinking ability, and Physical health. No part of the body is immune. But, because people handle stress differently, symptoms of stress can vary. Symptoms can be vague and may be the same as those caused by medical conditions. So it is important to discuss them with your doctor. You may experience any of the following symptoms of stress.
Symptoms are categorized into four type’s namely emotional symptoms, Physical symptoms, Cognitive symptoms, and Behavioral symptoms.
Emotional symptoms of stress include:
- Becoming easily agitated, frustrated, and Moody.
- Feeling Overwhelmed, like you are losing control or need to take control.
- Having difficulty relaxing and quieting your mind.
- Feeling bad about yourself (low Self-esteem), lonely, Worthless, and depressed.
- Avoiding others.
Physical symptoms of stress include:
- Low energy
- Upset stomach, including diarrhea, Constipation, and nausea.
- Aches, Pains, and tense muscles.
- Chest pain and rapid heartbeat.
- Frequent colds and infections
- Loss of sexual desire or ability
- Nervousness and shaking, ringing in the ear, cold or sweaty hands or feet.
- Dry mouth and difficulty swallowing
- Clenched jaw and grinding teeth
Cognitive symptoms of stress include:
- Constant Worrying
- Racing thoughts
- Forgetfulness and disorganization
- Inability to focus
- Poor Judgment
- Being Pessimistic or seeing only the negative side
Behavioral Symptoms of stress include:
- Changes in appetite – either not eating or eating too much
- Procrastinating and avoiding responsibilities
- Increased use of alcohol, drugs, or cigarettes
- Exhibiting more nervous behaviors, such as nail biting, fidgeting, and pacing.
What are the Consequences of Long term stress?
A little stress every now and then is not something to be concerned about. Ongoing, chronic stress, however, can cause or exacerbate many serious health problems, including:
- Mental health problems, such as depression, anxiety, and personality disorders
- Cardiovascular disease, including heart disease, high bold pressure, abnormal heart rhythms, heart attacks, and strokes
- Obesity and other eating disorders
- Menstrual Problems
- Sexual dysfunction, such as impotence and premature ejaculation in men and loss of sexual desire in both men and women
- Skin and hair problems, such as acne, psoriasis, and eczema, and permanent hair loss
- Gastrointestinal problems, such as GERD, gastritis, ulcerative colitis, and irritable colon.
What is the Diagnosis of Stress?
Stress is a disruption of normal homeostasis. During exposure to stress stimuli, the body responds physiologically by increased activity of both the hypothalamic pituitary adrenal (HPA) axis and the sympathoadrenal system (SAS). Stress also gives rise to a number of characteristic behavioral responses. Diagnosis of stress, therefore, depends on a multitude of factors and is complex. A variety of approaches to the diagnosis of stress have been employed, including the use of questionnaires, biochemical measures, and physiologic techniques. Most of these methods are subject to experimental error and must be viewed with caution. A thorough, stress oriented, face to face medical interview is currently the most practical way to diagnose stress and its effects. It remains for future research to develop a cleaner methodology to diagnose this elusive, yet, all too common entity.
How to manage stress?
It may not be possible to remove the stress from your life; however, managing your stress may help you to get things done. Below are some ideas for managing stress:
- Be Aware: Monitor your levels of stress and ask whether they are helpful or getting you down
- Take Stock: think about things in your life or pressures you place on yourself that may be increasing your stress.
- Take Charge: Deal with the unhelpful sources of stress before they build up and become a bigger problem.
- Make Choices: Look at areas in your life where you could manage your situation better or change the way you respond.
People can learn to manage stress and lead happier healthier lives. Here are some tips to help you keep stress at bay.
- Keep a Positive attitude.
- Accept that there are events that you cannot control.
- Be assertive instead of aggressive. Assert your feelings, opinions, or beliefs instead of becoming angry, defensive, or passive.
- Learn and Practice relaxation techniques; try meditation, yoga, or tai-chi for stress management.
- Exercise regularly. Your body can fight stress better when it is fit.
- Eat healthy, well-balanced meals.
- Learn to manage your time more effectively.
- Set limits appropriately and learn to say no to requests that would create excessive stress in your life.
- Make time for hobbies, interests, and relaxation.
- Get enough rest and sleep. Your body needs time to recover from stressful events.
- Don’t rely on alcohol, drugs, or compulsive behaviors to reduce stress.
- Seek out social support. Spend enough time with those you enjoy.
- Seek treatment with a Psychologist or other mental health professional trained in stress management or biofeedback techniques to learn healthy ways of dealing with the stress in your life.
How can I reduce stress naturally?
Stress is a common experience for most people. In fact, 70% of adults in the US say they feel stress or anxiety daily. Here are 16 simple ways to reduce stress naturally.
- Exercise: It is one of the most important things you can do to combat stress. It might seem contradictory, but putting physical stress on your body through exercise can relieve mental stress. The benefits are strongest when you exercise regularly. People who exercise regularly are less likely to experience stress than those who don’t exercise.
There are a few reasons behind this:
- Stress hormones: Exercise lowers your body’s stress hormones – such as cortisol – in the long run. It also helps release endorphins, which are chemicals that improve your mood and act as natural painkillers.
- Sleep: Exercise can also improve your sleep quality, which can be negatively affected by stress and anxiety.
- Confidence: When you exercise regularly, you may feel more competent and confident in your body, which in turn promotes mental wellbeing.
- Reduce Your Caffeine Intake: Caffeine is a stimulant found in coffee, tea, chocolate and energy drinks. High doses can increase anxiety. People have different thresholds for how much caffeine they can tolerate. If you notice that caffeine makes you jittery or anxious, consider cutting back. Although many studies show that coffee can be healthy in moderation, it’s not for everyone. In general, five or fewer cups per day is considered a moderate amount.
3. Write it down: one way to handle stress is to write things down. While recording what you are stressed about is one approach, another is jotting down what you’re grateful for.
4. Spend time with Friends and Family: Social support from friends and family can help you get through stressful times. One study found that for women, in particular, spending time with friends and children helps release oxytocin, a natural stress reliever. This effect is called “tend and befriend,” and is the opposite of the fight-or-flight response. Keep in mind that both men and women benefit from friendship. Another study found that men and women with the fewest social connections were more likely to suffer from depression and anxiety.
5. Laugh: It is hard to feel anxious when you are laughing. It is good for your health, and there are a few ways it may help relieve stress.
- Relieving your stress response.
- Relieving tension by relaxing your muscles.
- In the long term, laughter can also help improve your immune system and mood.
6. Learn to avoid Procrastination: Another way to take control of your stress is to stay on top of your priorities and stop procrastinating. It can lead you to act reactively, leaving you scrambling to catch up. This can cause stress, which negatively affects your health and sleeps quality. Get in the habit of making a to-do list organized by Priority. Give yourself realistic deadlines and work your way down the list. Work on the things that need to get done today and give yourself chunks of uninterrupted time, as switching between tasks or multitasking can be stressful itself.
7. Listen to soothing music: Listening to music can have a very relaxing effect on the body. Slow-paced instrumental music can induce the relaxation response by helping lower blood pressure and heart rate as well as stress hormones. Some types of classical, Celtic, Native American and Indian Music can be particularly soothing, but simply listening to the music you enjoy is effective too. Nature sounds can also be very calming. This is why they are often incorporated into relaxation and meditation music.
In Conclusion, stress is one of the human nature that everyone express. Moreover, everyone can choose his way to reduce his stress. Some prefer using listening to music and others use running and reading. Although stress may arise in your workplace and personal life, there are many simple ways to reduce the pressure you feel. Try to view stressful situations from a more positive perspective These tips often involve getting your mind away from the source of stress.
Exercise, mindfulness, music, physical intimacy, spending time with your pet, Deep Breathing, Cuddling, kissing, hugging and sex can all work to relieve stress and they will improve your overall work-life balance as well.