Stress is a subjective sensation associated with varied symptoms that differ for each of us. Stress is not always a synonym for distress, as there are good types of stress associated with things that give us excitement or anxiety, such as performing on stage, a roller coaster ride, standing on the roof of a very tall building, or competing in a sports game or race. In general, stress is related to both external and internal factors. External factors include the physical environment including your job, relationships with others, your home life, and all the situations, challenges, and expectations you’re confronted with on a daily basis. Internal factors determine your body’s ability to respond to, and deal with, the external stress-inducing factors, which include your diet, fitness level, emotional well-being, whether or not you smoke or use drugs and alcohol, and the amount of sleep you get.
What are the symptoms?
Stress manifests itself in so many ways that it’s impossible to list every sign and symptom, but common symptoms include:
- Frequent headaches, jaw clenching or pain
- Gritting or grinding teeth
- Sleep problems, insomnia or nightmares
- Frequent blushing or sweating
- Rashes, itching, hives or “goose bumps”
- Feeling overloaded or overwhelmed
- Forgetfulness, confusion
- Difficulty breathing and/or chest pains
- Heart burn, stomach pain, nausea
- Rapid or mumbled speech
- Poor sexual desire or performance
- Increased anger, frustration or hostility
How is stress prevented?
You can prevent stress by removing external factors that you know give you a high degree of stress-such as switching jobs, working less hours, or getting out of a bad relationship. If the kids or chores at home are causing you stress, you may consider getting a babysitter or nanny, or hiring someone to help with the house work. You also should make a point to get a balanced diet full of vegetables, fruits, protein and fiber, as well as making sure you get at least 30 minutes of aerobic activity or exercise a few times each week and avoiding cigarettes, drugs and alcohol. Incorporating some sort of relaxation strategy into your life will also help greatly; for example, joining a yoga class, meditating, keeping a journal, getting massage, or taking time out once a week to go somewhere that helps you relax, such as a hiking trail, park or nature preserve.
How is stress treated?
Even though stress is not an illness and everyone experiences it, treating it is important since high levels of stress can put you at risk for a wide array of medical conditions. You can treat stress in many of the same ways that you can prevent it. Many people enjoy jogging and aerobic activity, meditation, prayer, and yoga. Others turn to muscular relaxation exercises, deep breathing, massage therapies, visual imagery and self hypnosis. There are also acupuncture, acupressure, biofeedback, and other bodywork and postural techniques. Many people also find that listening to music, hobbies, volunteer work, keeping a daily journal, playing with pets, or taking short breaks help them to relax. Others find relief for their stress from aromatherapy, nutritional supplements, or finding a pretty place to be alone.
Stress and Hormone Optimization
If you have a hormonal imbalance, your body may be responding poorly to stress or unable to keep up with the demands of your life. At Med Stop, we offer natural hormone replacement therapy to restore your body with the necessary hormones it needs to deal with stress and function properly.
Schedule an appointment today!
If you are under a lot of stress or thinking stress is taking over your life and causing debilitating physical or emotional symptoms, call us today at (732) 366-1000. We look forward to meeting with you and helping you reduce your stress, eliminate your pain, and improve your life!