Stress is not only in your head and not only a feeling.
Stress is a physiological response to a threat to the body, such as hunger, physical harm, sleep deprivation, or an overload of emotions or tasks. When stresses happen, the body responds physically by constricting blood vessels, increasing blood pressure and breathing, and increasing hormones such as cortisol and adrenaline into the blood stream. Over time being stressed can lead to health problems.
Chronic stress or prolonged stress can lead to behavior problems that can further threaten your health and well being. These behaviors may include but are not limited to: withdrawing from others, nervous habits, substance abuse, depression, anxiety, and mood swings. Physical Problems such as aches and pains, digestive issues, sleep issues and lack of sex drive are also associated with stress. Cognitive problems that may be effected by stress include concentration, memory and anxiety.
Continued stress can lead to health problems such as but not limited to chronic inflammation, weight gain or loss, auto immune diseases, and heart issues. Although a person may not be able to remove all stress from their life, one can change how they respond to stress. To do this one must learn to:
- Distinguish between normal living stress and stress that is from overload (putting too much on oneself).
- Learn to recognize stress before it becomes chronic and an issue to your health and well being.
- Discover factors that influence your tolerance to stress.
- Pay attention to how your body reacts and controls stress.
- Finally investigate lifestyle changes that reduce your stress or how you handle the stress.
Once you have learned what causes your stress you can then, if possible, eliminate some of the factors causing stress in your life and/or implement stress reduction methods into your life.
Methods that reduce stress include therapies such as massage, reiki(energy therapy), and bowen therapy. Meditation, yoga, exercise and good nutrition also are great to incorporate into your daily and weekly routines.
May you discover the path to a healthier you.
And remember, we’re here to help.