Stress is what you feel when you have to handle
more than you are used to. Stress is a fact of life for most people, and it
affects everyone differently. What causes stress for you may not be stressful
for someone else.
A lot of things can cause stress. You may feel
stress when you go on a job interview, take a test, or run a race. This kind of
short-term stress is normal and even useful. It can help you if you need to
work hard or react quickly. For example, stress can help you finish an
important job on time.
Stress also can last a long time. Long-term
stress is caused by stressful situations or events. Examples of long-term
stress include long-term health problems, ongoing problems at work, or
conflicts in your family. Long-term stress can harm your health.
When you are stressed, your body responds as
though you are in danger. It makes hormones that speed up your heart, make you
breathe faster, and give you a burst of energy. This is called the
fight-or-flight stress response. If the stress is over quickly, your body goes
back to normal and no harm is done.
But if stress happens too
often or lasts too long, it can have bad effects. Long-term stress can make you
more likely to get sick, and it can make symptoms of some diseases worse. If
you tense up when you are stressed, you may develop neck, shoulder, or low back
pain. Stress is linked to high blood pressure and heart disease.
Stress also harms your emotional health. It can make you moody, tense, or
depressed. Your relationships may suffer, and you may not do well at work or
How to relax your mind
How to relax your body
Go to https://www.healthwise.net/patientEd
Enter N032 in the search box to learn more about "Learning About Stress."
Current as of:
July 26, 2016
Adam Husney, MD - Family Medicine
& Christine R. Maldonado, PhD - Behavioral Health
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