Take care of that Stress!

Stress, prevalent in our society, is a feeling of emotional or physical tension. It describes a condition that can impact a person’s physical and mental well-being negatively or positively.
Short-term stress is also known as acute stress. This form of stress is positive as it helps one manage difficult situations. It can stimulate creative thinking and enhance problem-solving skills. It helps people stretch their limits and go beyond the norms.
 Reacting to stress, the body releases hormones that make the brain more alert and increase your pulse. These hormones help cushion the effects of stress on the body and would return to normal levels once the source of the stress is gone. The hormones include: Cortisol (the primary stress hormone) increases the level of glucose in the bloodstream; this distributes energy needed for a fight or a flight. Norepinephrine prepares the body for fight or flight response; increasing heart rate and blood flow to skeletal muscles.
However, when stress stays on for a longer period of time, it is known as the chronic stress. It results from the inability to manage stress. Chronic stress is problematic causing the body to produce hormones for a longer period; this predisposes to severe health problems such as high blood pressure, heart diseases, diabetes, depression or anxiety, menstrual problems and skin problems. This can lead to an unhealthy, short life.
Causes of stress (also known as stressor) range from starting a new job, getting laid off, money problems, problems at home or work to death of a close one. Several other things could also cause stress in different people. Ability to manage stress is dependent on an individual’s genetic make-up and life experiences.
Factors that can help one manage stress include:
·          A healthy diet
·         Healthy relationships
·         Regular exercise, good form of relaxation and sleep
·         A sense of humor
·         Professional counselling.
Manage your stress; take care of your health!

By Ifeyinwa Ugo-Amadi


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