stress relief tools

How Does Stress Affect Health - Do You know these Hidden Dangers of Stress?

Many of us are wondering how does stress affect health. And there is a good reason for this. We are experiencing a lot of stress in our lives, and it is now clear that chronic, unrelieved stress can have serious consequences on your body.

Experts estimate that between 70-90% of visits to a general practitioner are stress related.

So, how does stress affect health? Stress affects health on all levels of our being – physical, emotional, cognitive, behavioral, and even spiritual.

On a physical level, stress can cause or contribute to back pain, fatigue, headaches, digestive troubles, high blood pressure, heart problems, and many other health issues. To learn more about physical effects of stress, watch a great video on the science of stress.

On an emotional level, there are what experts call psychological effects of stress. Some of these effects are: depression, anxiety, panic attacks, mood swings, feelings of guilt, anger, and irritability.

On a mental or cognitive level, stress can cause problems in making decisions, confusion, difficulty concentrating, fuzzy thinking, and poor memory.

On a behavioral level, as a result of stress, you may overeat, smoke cigarettes, withdraw socially, sleep too much or too little, and behave recklessly.

How does all this happen?
When you are confronted with a stressor (something that is stressful to you), your body goes through a stress response, called the General Adaptation Syndrome.

During this stress response your body undergoes many changes, for example: your heart speeds up, more sugar is released into the blood stream to give you energy, muscles tense up and brace for action, your digestion slows down, and blood pressure rises.

When these reactions are frequent and prolonged, stress can have serious long term effects on your health.

Finding ways to relieve stress is an important strategy to reduce health risks and health problems associated with stress. Some great stress relief tools include:

Where does stress come from?
There are many causes of stress, impacting us every day. Some causes of stress are internal – our own worries - about money, job security, family, and health. And some stress comes from external sources – pollution, toxins, inadequate sleep, and lack of appropriate exercise, job stress, relationship stress, and physical pain.

How does stress affect health? continue reading

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Words of Wisdom

The time to relax is when you don't have time for it.
~Sydney J. Harris

Tension is who you think you should be. Relaxation is who you are.
~Chinese Proverb

There cannot be a stressful crisis next week. My schedule is already full.
~Henry Kissinger

Humor, a great stress reliever!
Laugh, be happy and have less stress!
~Catherine Pulsifer




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