Stress - Signs, Symptoms and How to Manage Stress
Stress is a feeling we have when we react to events that don’t make us feel very good. Such events can happen at school, like a test or examination, at your office, like getting a new boss or in your private life, like preparing for a divorce.
Our body has certain hormones that it releases during times of stress. In this period more adrenalin gets into your blood. The hormones make your heartbeat go up and change your blood pressure and the way you breathe. Blood vessels become wider and let more blood pass through. Our body heats up and produces sweat to cool it down.
Stress response is what your body does to fight stress. It makes you handle stress and do well during such situations. Stress response happens, for example, when you are in a car and step on the brakes to avoid an accident. Or when you are the one chosen to shoot a penalty in a football game that may decide if you win or lose.
Stress can also be long term, like preparing for a difficult exam or having private problems with your parents, teachers or friends. Stress happens when you work too much and don’t have the time to relax. This long-term stress keeps your body alert and pumps hormones into your bloodstream for a longer time. This can hurt your body, make you tired and weaken your immune system.
Although the right amount of stress can be good, too much stress isn’t. A little stress can motivate you to study hard. But if stress lasts too long your body can’t cope with it any more. Some people overact to stress and even make small problems seem difficult to solve. They feel worried, upset and anxious all the time.
Signs of stress
People who are experiencing long-term stress may have the following symptoms:
- panic attacks
- the feeling of constant pressure on them
- they change moods quickly
- stomach problems, headaches
- sleeping problems
- drink too much alcohol
How to keep stress under control
Managing stress is not an easy thing to do. Knowing how to de-stress can keep it under control
- Don’t think you can do everything. Concentrate on the things that are important
- Be realistic- Don’t try to be perfect!
- Get enough sleep! It helps your body relax
- Learn simple breathing exercises and use them in stressful situations
- Read a book or take a relaxing bath
- Treat your body well. Get enough exercise, go for long walks or a run
- Give your body the right food and enough vitamins.
- Think positively. Many people who endure long-term stress are pessimistic.
- Solve small problems. This gives you a feeling that you are in control. It gives you confidence and you can manage bigger problems better.
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- adrenalin = a chemical that your body produces; it makes your heart beat faster when you are afraid, or excited
- alert = aware, awake
- although = while
- amount = quantity
- anxious = nervous
- avoid = keep away from
- blood pressure = the force with which blood travels through your body
- brake = a tool that makes your car stop or go more slowly
- breathe = to take air in through your mouth or nose and push it out
- choose- chosen = select
- confidence = feel good
- constant = always
- cope = deal with
- de-stress = fight off stress
- divorce = to end a marriage and break up
- endure = suffer from
- exercise = keep fit, work out, do some training
- experience = have
- heartbeat = the sound of your heart as it pumps blood through your body
- hormone = a chemical that your body produces
- immune system = the system by which your body protects itself against a disease
- long term = last a longer time
- manage = deal with
- mood = how you feel
- overreact = to react to something with too much emotion
- prepare = get ready for
- pressure = stress
- relax = rest
- release = set free
- solve = work out
- stress response = how you react to stress
- sweat = drops that come through your skin when you are hot , are frightened or do exercise
- symptom = sign
- upset = troubled, sad
- weaken = to make weaker