Relaxation & Stress Management

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Stess? What is it and how does it effect us?

Stress is the body's natural defense against predators and danger. It flushes the body with hormones to prepare systems to evade or confront danger. This is known as the "fight-or-flight" mechanism. Stress is an unavoidable consequence of life. There are some stresses like the loss of a loved one that you are unable to avoid and others that you can prevent or influence. Stress will effect your physical and mental health. It is necessary to learn tips and tricks to manage your stress and relax. There are 3 types of Stress:  Acute, Episodic Acute and Chronic. 

Managing Stress:

 Stress management can help to:

  • remove or change the source of stress
  • alter the way you view a stressful event
  • lower the impact that stress might have on your body
  • learn alternative ways of coping

Stress Type #1: Acute Stress

 Acute stress is short-term and is the most common way that stress occurs. Acute stress is often caused by thinking about the pressures of events that have recently occurred, or upcoming demands in the near future.

For example, if you have recently been involved in an argument that has caused upset or have an upcoming deadline, you may feel stress about these triggers. However, the stress will be reduced or removed once these are resolved.

It does not cause the same amount of damage as long-term, chronic stress. Short-term effects include tension headaches and an upset stomach as well as a moderate amount of distress.

However, repeated instances of acute stress over a long period can become chronic and harmful.

Stress Type#2: Episodic Acute Stress

 People who frequently experience acute stress, or whose lives present frequent triggers of stress, have episodic acute stress.

A person with too many commitments and poor organization can find themselves displaying episodic stress symptoms. These include a tendency to be irritable and tense, and this irritability can affect relationships. Individuals that worry too much on a constant basis can also find themselves facing this type of stress.

This type of stress can also lead to high blood pressure and heart disease.

Stress Type#3: Chronic Stress

 Chronic Stress is the most harmful type of stress and grinds away over a long period.

Ongoing poverty, a dysfunctional family, or an unhappy marriage can cause chronic stress. It occurs when a person never sees an escape from the cause of stress and stops seeking solutions. Sometimes, it can be caused by a traumatic experience early in life.

Chronic stress can continue unnoticed, as people can become used to it, unlike acute stress that is new and often has an immediate solution. It can become part of an individual's personality, making them constantly prone to the effects of stress regardless of the scenarios they come up against.

People with chronic stress are likely to have a final breakdown that can lead to suicide, violent actions, heart attacks and strokes according to Medical News Today.

Tip of the Day:

 Try to follow the advice in Reinhold Niebuhr’s, serenity prayer, “Grant me the courage to change the things I can change, the serenity to accept the things I can’t change, and the wisdom to know the difference.”