Managing stress is important for maintaining a healthy and balanced life. Stress refers to a state of mental or emotional strain or tension experienced by individuals when they encounter demanding or challenging circumstances. It is a natural response of the body and mind to various pressures, whether they are physical, mental, or emotional in as cortisol and adrenaline. This response is designed to help individuals cope with threats or dangerous situations. However, in modern times, stress is often caused by everyday challenges like work deadlines, relationship problems, financial pressures, or academic demands, and health problems, as well as more mundane things like clutter or busy schedules. Stress management is the range of techniques, strategies, and therapies designed to help people control their stress.
What happens to the body during stress
Stress can manifest itself in different ways, both physically and psychologically.
Physical symptoms of stress include:
- Aches and pains.
- Chest pain or a feeling like your heart is racing.
- Exhaustion or trouble sleeping.
- Headaches, dizziness or shaking.
- High blood pressure.
- Muscle tension or jaw clenching.
- Stomach or digestive problems.
- Trouble having sex.
- Weak immune system
Pychological symptoms may include
- Difficulty concentrating
- Feelings of overwhelm, and a decrease in overall well-being.
While some level of stress is normal and can even be motivating, chronic or excessive stress can have negative effects on health and well-being. It can contribute to the developing or worsening of various physical and mental health conditions, such as cardiovascular disease, depression, anxiety disorders, and digestive problems.
Often, people with chronic stress try to manage it with unhealthy behaviours, including:
- Drinking alcohol too much or too often.
- Participating compulsively in sex, shopping or internet browsing.
- Using drugs
How to overcome stress –
Managing stress is important for maintaining a healthy and balanced life. Strategies for stress management may include
Engaging in regular physical exercise
- Practising relaxation techniques like deep breathing or meditation
- Setting realistic goals
- Spend time with your friends & family
- Spend time in nature
- Spend time with your pet
- Reduce your caffeine intake
- Minimize screen time
- Eating a healthy diet
- Getting enough sleep
- Hobbies and leisure activities
- Positive thinking
- Progressive muscle relaxation
It’s worth noting that the information provided here is general and should not replace the advice of a healthcare professional. If you or someone you know is experiencing persistent or overwhelming stress, it is recommended to consult with a qualified healthcare provider for personalized guidance and support.