Stress is any factor threatening physical or mental well-being. There are two types of stress, positive and negative. Positive stress is good for example for sportsmen because it helps them to concentrate and focus on a performance. Negative stress causes us to respond by worrying, panicking or losing our concentration. Constant stress, however, can lead to serious health problems such as depression, cancer, stroke, and heart attack.
Symptoms of stress:
Headaches, migraine, insomnia, anxiety, trembling, sweating, recurrent infection, churning stomach, constipation, diarrhoea, racing heart, sinuses, loss of concentration, lack of memory, loss of motivation, tension, pain, mood swings, loss of or excessive appetite.
How does stress affect us?
The body always responds to stress. Perceiving danger, the body prepares to face it or run away (the fight or flight syndrome). Several systems shut down and the body works to conserve energy to enable movement and escape. Adrenaline is produced to deal with impending danger. The digestive system shuts down, heart rate increases, the blood vessels contract increasing blood pressure and the muscles contract. The body relaxes again as the stress factor is removed. But if the body is exposed to a constant stress, it remains tense and cannot relax. It is this unused response mechanism which is damaging. The body remains in a state of alert and eventually this will have a physical effect on the system.
Techniques for reducing stress
What to do?
Eat a regular healthy diet.The digestive system is very often affected by stress and you don’t want to stress it out even more. Or would you like to add stomach ulcers to your health problem list?
Exercise. Any kind of exercise helps reduce the effects of stress. Some clients have found that hard exercise such as sprinting will help the body rid itself of the excessive adrenalin it has produced in response to stress. A little bit of exhaustion might help you to relax and sleep well.
Reduce or avoid intake of caffeine, nicotine and alcohol. Tea, coffee, coke, cigarettes and alcohol can momentarily help you to relax but they can have an adverse effect on the body in the long run.
Relax. We can manage stress by learning to respond in a healthier way and by relaxation. Tai chi, Yoga, breathing, visualisation are some possible relaxation techniques. Or perhaps massage or just going to the cinema would do?
GET RID OF THE CAUSE OF STRESS!!!!
Apparently 75-80% of disease is caused by stress. Unless you learn to respond to stress in a healthy way, be prepared for endless hours of cancelling plans or fighting with stress related conditions.
I wish you good health and enjoyable treatments.