All About STRESS
and how to deal with it
What is stress?
Stress is how our body reacts to changes around us. It can be good or bad. Stressors are the things in our lives that cause stress. There can be internal stressors (illness, mood, and attitude) and external stressors (work, noise, and our relationships with others). Stress can be a good thing and a bad thing. Good stress can give you motivation and help you make safe decisions in dangerous situations. Bad stress can come from uncomfortable situations or negative things happening around you. Taking a test may cause you feelings of fear and anxiety These feelings would be bad stress.
Stress is a necessary reaction and it can be beneficial. Stress is one way our body can tell us that something is not right. When we try to take on too much in our lives we may start to feel anxiety and fatigue. This is one way our body is telling us that we need to slow down and take a look at what needs to change. When not dealt with properly, stress can have harmful effects such as depression, immune system changes, and can even lead a person to develop risk factors for heart disease.
Am I Stressed?
Some well known symptoms of stress are anxiety, anger, and irritability. Sometimes it may not be so obvious that your body is telling you it is stressed. Stomach pain, trouble sleeping, headaches, sweating, and hair loss can be signs that you are stressed. Stress can also cause you to have a high heart rate and blood pressure.
How can I prevent stress?
There are three categories of stress prevention: primary, secondary, and tertiary. Primary prevention includes counseling, education about coping techniques, and putting those techniques to good use. Secondary prevention includes screenings to determine if you are experiencing stress so it can be kept under control. These screenings would include checklists to measure any physical and emotional symptoms you are experiencing. Tertiary prevention includes programs that are family or community based and focus on stress management.
How do I cope with my stress?
There are many different ways a person can cope with stress. What works for one person may not work for everyone. Music therapy, meditation, and quietly reflecting may be ways a person can unwind and sort through stress. Some people would rather have distractions like watching TV or reading a book to keep their mind occupied. Some people will cry to deal with stress, and some people will laugh. Exercise and physical activity are good ways to distract and blow off some steam. Defense mechanisms help us to protect ourselves. When used appropriately, defense mechanisms can be goods things. Sometimes it is okay to not let your guard completely down. When defense mechanisms are over used, though, it can harm the relationships you have with others.