Stress or Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD). It is an anxiety disorder that can develop after facing a terrifying event or ordeal in which some serious physical harm occurred or was threatened. Your body has a way of responding to any kind of demand or threat. When you sense danger, whether it’s real or imagined, the body gets excited, and defences kick into high gear in a sudden, rapid process known as the “fight-or-flight” response or “stress”.
Symptoms of Stress
Here are some tell-tale signs which show that you’re under stress:
- Pains and aches
- Chest pain or a feeling like the heart is racing
- Tiredness or trouble sleeping
- Headaches, dizziness or shaking limbs
- High blood pressure
- Jaw stiffness or muscle tension
- Stomach or digestive problems
Negative Effects of Stress
Stress has several negative effects on the health and life of a person:
- Indeed, the symptoms of stress can affect your body, thoughts, feelings, and behaviour.
- If you’re under stress for a long time, you can face physical symptoms like headaches, digestion problems, high blood pressure, chest pain, and problems sleeping.
- Long-term stress can also lead to mental issues like depression, panic attacks, anxiety and worry.
- Stress can reduce the immune system’s responses through hormones released as part of the stress response. Some of the common health issues caused by stress are Tiredness, Insomnia, lower libido, changes in appetite.
Impacts on Behaviour
You may know it out not, but it’s happening; stress can lead you to behave differently than your normal behaviour.
Some of the most common behaviours in which changes might be seen are as follows:
- Changes in appetite: Overeating or undereating (under eating is more common during coping with stress.
- Decrease in social interactions, increment in arguments.
- Nature becomes aggressive.
- To cope with stress, a person becomes a drug addict and often crutches.
- People with a high level of coping with stress have a quicker trigger for frustration or get irritated much more easily.
Forms of Coping with Stress
According to American Psychological Association (APA), coping with stress life skills can be categorised as follows:
- Acute Stress: Acute stress is short-term and the most common form of stress.
- Episodic Acute Stress: Episodic acute stress is prevalent among those individuals whose lives are constantly demanding.
- Chronic Stress: Chronic stress is described as a type of stress that occurs over time from either external or internal stressors.
Strategies for Coping with Stress
There is much different stress coping strategies, but the five general types of coping strategies are as follows:
- Problem-focused coping
- Emotion-focused coping
- Social support
- Religious coping
Methods of Coping with Stress
Some common ways to deal with anxiety and stress are as follows:
- Track your stressors: Use a journal and write about you in it to identify which situations create the most stress and how you respond to them.
- Set limits: List all the commitments and projects that make you feel overwhelmed. Identify which commitments are priorities and cut back on anything not essential. Setting limits on nonessential obligations is important to reduce chronic stress.
- Exercise: Exercise may be the healthiest stress-buster. It modulates your body’s production of feel-good endorphins, which helps to regulate sleep and lower the symptoms of mild depression.
- Limit Alcohol: Alcohol, nicotine and caffeine may relieve your stress for the short term but have negative impacts on your health and can make stress even worse in the long run.
- Sleep well: If you sleep for less than seven to eight hours, your body won’t tolerate stress as much as it can.
- Bond with pet animals: Clinical studies prove that spending even a short time with a companion pet animal can cut anxiety levels almost in half.
- Interact with people: Talking with a supportive person releases hormones that reduce stress. Lean on those good listeners(friends) in your life.
- Rebalance work: If you’re spending too much time at your work, intentionally set more days in your schedule to enjoy time for fun, either alone or with others.
- See a Therapist or Counsellor: If negative thoughts keep overwhelming your ability to make positive changes, it’s time to seek professional help. Make an appointment with a counsellor. Your health and life are worth it.
Coping with stress is a common reaction; however, it can become a problem when it is continuous or frequent. A balanced or interesting lifestyle and stress coping strategies can help you reduce and manage coping with stress. Problems that cause stress can’t always be resolved, but changing your expectations regarding that issue may help. Untreated stress can lead to serious illness, whether physically or mentally. Identify what stressed you out, Avoid the stressors, Keep it positive, keep your body healthy, Do some curricular activities. It’s indeed to get the help of any counsellor or therapist if you feel you can’t cope.