The ABC of Stress

By October 27, 2017Stress

Medically speaking, stress is the body’s emotional, physical, psychological and behavioural response to certain internal and external influences (stressors.) It’s not just humans that deal with stress, every living organism has a stress response that allows it to survive and evolve 산하련 다운로드. And while small amounts of stress are actually good for us in that they keep us motivated and on our toes, persistent day-to-day stress is linked to a number of serious health conditions. The most common stressors tend to include: stress at work and home, relationship woes, family troubles and financial debt.

Whatever your reason for being stressed out, Dr. Russell from Hello Doctor recommends that you get to the root of what’s causing your stress, and do whatever it takes to reduce or eliminate that stress from your life, before it starts taking a toll on your health.

What are the causes?

Stress is unique to each person, so the same causes don’t apply to everyone. A ‘stressor’ is what causes a person stress, and knowing what your stressor is, is the first step to managing stress. The most common causes of stress are:

  • Traumatic events: a death in the family or losing your job for example
  • Poor eating habits: you’re not eating a balanced diet
  • Financial instability
  • Health concerns: are you always sick, or do you have a chronic health condition
  • Work or home stress: Are you doing too much at work, are there people at work you don’t get along with who are causing you problems? Is your relationship with your spouse or partner taking strain?
  • Children: Children are a blessing, but it can be expensive and challenging bringing up a child, especially if you don’t have family or financial support
  • Phobias

How do you know if you’re under stress?

Symptoms of stress depend on how well a person manages stress, and how long a person has been dealing with it. Remember, stress takes a heavy toll on the body, even if you do think you’re managing it well.

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The most common physical symptoms of stress include:

  • Difficulty sleeping
  • Muscle aches and pains
  • Tension headaches
  • Chronic fatigue

The most common mental or emotional symptoms of stress include:

  • Feeling depressed
  • Lacking motivation and enthusiasm

Often, people who are stressed for long periods of time turn to alcohol and drugs as a way cope with it. This is NOT the solution, and it can lead to more serious problems, like addiction, very quickly.

How do you overcome stress?

When it comes to treating and beating stress, it’s not the same as treating other illnesses. The first thing you need to do is find the source of what’s causing you stress, then you need to work on ways to reduce or eliminate that stressor from your life. If you have financial debt, find out how you can pay it off faster – even if you can only pay a few hundred rand more a month it will make a difference.

If you’re struggling with insomnia as a result of stress, exercise more. It might be the last thing you feel like doing, but a bit of exercise every day helps ease stress and helps you sleep better at night. Regular exercise also releases endorphins in your brain, which make you feel good.

Watch what you’re eating – do you eat a healthy, balanced diet most of the time? If not, it’s time to start eating more fresh fruit, vegetables, lean meat, beans and lentils, and LESS processed, fried and fatty foods.

Finally, if these simple lifestyle changes aren’t making any difference to your stress levels, then it’s time to speak to your doctor to see if there are natural supplements or medication you can take to help reduce your stress. Remember though, medication isn’t a permanent solution – it takes permanent, positive lifestyle changes to make the real difference.

Need Help?

SADAG (South African Depression and Anxiety Group)

South Africa Suicide Hotline