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Stress is a normal part of life that everyone experiences from time to time. Stress is the body’s response to a demand, challenge or threat. When you are stressed, stress hormones are released to alert and prepare the body. This response is often known as the, “fight, flight or freeze response”, which can occur within minutes, hours or days. Stressors can be a single event, happen repeatedly or accumulate over time. Stress responses or triggers may be due to running late, getting stuck in traffic, responsibilities or pressures at work or school, relationship, health or money issues, arguments, sudden or major life changes or traumatic experiences. Everyone experiences stress differently. Stress can have physical, emotional, behavioral and interpersonal responses depending upon each person and the particular stressor.
Loss of Sleep
Sleeping too much
Lack of control
Unable to focus
Easily frustrated, Moody or upset
Scattered, racing thoughts
Constant worrying or uneasiness
Heart rate increases
Blood pressure increases
Breathing rate rises
Blood sugar level rises
Loss of appetite
Aches & Pains
Not all stress is bad, there are times when stress can be good, such as surviving a dangerous situation or preparing for a test, interview or athletic event. However, if stress is left unmanaged it can cause serious health issues, for instance depression, anxiety, high blood pressure, heart disease and diabetes.
Stress management is important as it helps you maintain focus, energy and alertness to rise up above pressures and challenges. Preventing and managing your stress can lower risks for health conditions, improve sleep, mood, interactions with family and friends, weight control and muscle tension. The goal is to establish a balance with relationships, work, fun, relaxation and resilience. When you are undergoing a lot of stress, it is vital to notice its affects and learn best practices to manage your stress.
Perceived Stress Scale: Questions regarding your feelings and thoughts to help identify your perceived stress levels.
Always reach to get help if you are suffering from high amounts of stress, severe symptoms or unmanaged stress or feelings.
Your Health care provider can refer you to a mental health professional (i.e. psychologist or social worker)
988 Suicide and Crisis Lifeline
Call 988 & Press 1
Bureau of Medicine and Surgery
7700 Arlington Blvd. Ste. 5113 Falls Church, VA 22042-5113
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