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Stress

Written by Onaolapo Adeyemi. Posted in EMDR

Stress is one of the most overlooked and under-appreciated problems in modern life.  In this article, we’ll be interchanging the word “stress” with “tension”, “stiffness”, and “tautness”.  Tension can lead to an extreme headache.  Tension headache is the most common type of a headache.  This type of a headache can cause mild or moderate pain in the head, neck, and behind the eyes. Some patients say that a tension headache feels like a tight band around their foreheads.Diet, sleep, and exercise are all important, but mental and physiological stress will undermine your best attempts at anything unless you manage them.

examining_StressYou don’t have to go to the same lengths that most people did, but you will get better results just by taking some simple steps mentioned below.

Stress is the disruption of homeostasis and is not always bad. In regards to exercise, stress is needed to produce training adaptations. In order to learn, you need to stress your brain in new ways — learning a new language, solving a math problem, creating a new business/product, etc.. Humans are designed to handle small, intermittent bouts of stress. When tension becomes chronic, it becomes a disease.

You may feel there’s nothing you can do about tension. The bills won’t stop coming, there will never be more hours in the day, and your work and family responsibilities will always be demanding.  But you have more control over tension than you might think.  Stress management is all about taking charge: of your lifestyle, thoughts, emotions, and the way you deal with problems.  No matter how tensed your life seems to be, there are steps you can take to relieve the pressure and regain control.

Problem of Stress and Tension

Tension holds you back in all aspects of life. It weakens your immune system, costs you precious time that should be spent enjoying life.  Stiffness hurts your interpersonal relationships and alienates others. It decreases your ability to make rational decisions and perform at work. Tension sucks.

It’s easy to identify sources of tension following a major life event such as changing jobs, moving home, or losing a loved one, but pinpointing the sources of everyday tension can be more complicated.  It’s all too easy to overlook your own thoughts, feelings, and behaviors that contribute to your tension levels.  Sure, you may know that you’re constantly worried about work deadlines, but maybe it’s your procrastination, rather than the actual job demands, that is causing the stiffness.

Stress can advance to dangerous levels, threatening your physical, emotional, and mental wellbeing. When it does, feelings of isolation and helplessness can be amplified to heights you may have never experienced before. In such a scenario, outreach, whatever form it takes, has to be your anchor. Here are some emergency symptoms to watch out for, all of which might suggest an intense level of stress that requires an intervention of some kind. From there, we explore the organizations and people you can turn to in order to receive support and treatment when you need it.

Stress is an epidemic.  It is one of the most widespread and debilitating conditions in the world, yet many people act as if it is completely natural.  If there was one thing that could be called the antithesis of The Bulletproof Executive — it is stress.  Tension sucks up the reserves you should be using to create more resilience. Stress may even trigger the onset of dementia. In one study, 5 72 percent — nearly three out of four — Alzheimer’s patients had experienced severe emotional tautness during the two years preceding their diagnosis.

Tension is most likely to be harmful when the following conditions are present: it feels against your will, out of your control and utterly devoid of meaning. If you can change any of these conditions – by finding some meaning in it – you can reduce the harmful effects of stress.

Signs And Symptoms of Stress

Physical symptoms of stress include such digestive disorders as those mentioned above, plus ulcers, heartburn and indigestion, headaches, high blood pressure, palpitations, breathing problems (such as asthma or hyperventilation), overheating, exhaustion and insomnia, back or muscle ache, skin rashes (such as hives or eczema­ma), excessive sweating, and nervous disorders (such as twitching, grinding teeth, or picking at skin).

At the same time, Cortisone has the effect of suppressing the immune system, so all immune defi­cient illnesses (from the common cold to cancer) can be directly or indirectly caused by stress.

The physical symptoms of stress are themselves distressing. In fact, the body’s response to stress can feel so bad that it produces additional mental stress. During the stress response, then, mind and body can amplify each other’s distress signals, creating a vicious cycle of tension and anxiety.

Types of Stress And Tension

Many types of stress are similar in essence but have different characteristics. For example, stress experienced by teenagers is probably no different than much of the stress adults have, but because teens tend to respond differently than adults to certain stressful situations there might be different ways to handle it.

There are different types of stress — eustress, acute and chronic stress disorders.

  1. Acute tension is the most common type of tension. It’s your body’s immediate reaction to a new challenge, event, or demand, and it triggers your fight-or-flight response.
    Severe acute tension such as tension suffered as the victim of a crime or life-threatening situation can lead to mental health problems, such as post-traumatic stress disorder or acute stress disorder.
  2. Episodic acute tension – When acute tension happens frequently, it’s called episodic acute tension. People who always seem to be having a crisis tend to have episodic acute tension.
  3. Chronic tension – If acute tension isn’t resolved and begins to increase or lasts for long periods of time, it becomes chronic tension. This tension is constant and doesn’t go away.

All of these types have effects on your body. Some types of effects of tension and stiffness on your health are helpful while some are harmful. The acute and chronic types can weaken your immune system. But the chronic type makes you more vulnerable to cancer.

Effects of Stress on the Body

Effects of stress on the body can also lead people to cope strategies that worsen their stress and their health. For example, some people smoke, overeat, or abuse alcohol or drugs as a reaction to stress. These strategies may seem to temporarily relieve stress, but they then contribute to overall poor health and risk factors for disease. Such methods of coping can snowball with stress into much higher risk factors for heart disease, high blood pressure, and stroke.

The effects of stress on the body are numerous and are risk factors for a number of medical conditions. However, a small amount of stress, especially in a dangerous situation can have certain beneficial consequences. One frequently reads of people who are able to do extraordinary things under stress, like lifting cars to free trapped children. Constant, or chronic stress, on the other hand, is often associated with health risks instead of benefits.

Other effects of stress on the body include an increased heart rate, rapid breathing, and a redirection of blood flow to the muscles and brain. Normal digestive patterns tend to slow down because less blood flow is directed to the digestive tract. Chemicals that help form platelets also are released, and one may note perspiration, and tense muscles as being caused by stress.

Solution To Reduce or Eliminate Stress

By rewiring your brain using a newly found therapy called EMDR, and nervous system to handle tension more efficiently, you will become a more effective person in all walks of life, and the tension you do experience will be the kind that makes you stronger.

Physical activity plays a key role in reducing and preventing the effects of pressure, but you don’t have to be an athlete or spend hours in a gym to experience the benefits. Just about any form of physical activity can help relieve pressure and burn away anger, tension, and frustration. Exercise releases endorphins that boost your mood and make you feel good, and it can also serve as a valuable distraction to your daily worries.

While the maximum benefit comes from exercising for 30 minutes or more, you can start small and build up your fitness level gradually. Short, 10-minute bursts of activity that elevate your heart rate and make you break out into a sweat can help to relieve worry and give you more energy and hopefulness. Even very small activities can add up over the course of a day. The first step is to get yourself up and moving.

Social engagement is the quickest, most efficient way to rein in pressure and avoid overreacting to internal or external events that you perceive as threatening.  Expressing what you’re going through can be very cathartic, even if there’s nothing you can do to alter the demanding situation. There is nothing more calming to your nervous system than communicating with another human being who makes you feel safe and understood. This experience of safety—as perceived by your nervous system—results from nonverbal cues that you hear, see and feel.

If tension happens too often or lasts too long, it can have bad effects. It can be linked to headaches, an upset stomach, back pain, and trouble sleeping. It can weaken your immune system, making it harder to fight off disease.  If you already have a health problem, stiffness may make it worse. It can make you moody, tense, or depressed. Your relationships may suffer, your sexual life could be affected, and you may not do well at work or school.

Stress is an unavoidable factor in our modern day lives. Practise many techniques like meditation, yoga, nature walking and others along with therapy, if need be. You should be more consistent with whichever route you decide to take.

stress_and_tension_breathing_exerciseBreathing is something we do on a daily basis. The body, in a living state, breathes involuntarily whether we are awake, sleeping, or actively exercising. Breathing is living. It is a vital function of life.

In yoga, we refer to this as pranayama . Prana is a Sanskrit word that means life-force and Ayama mean extending or stretching. Thus, the word “pranayama” translates to the control of life force. It is also known as the extension of breath. Every cell in our bodies needs oxygen to function properly. So it’s no surprise that research shows that a regular practice of controlled breathing can decrease the effects of stress on the body and increase overall physical and mental health.

Thus, the word “pranayama” translates to the control of life force. It is also known as the extension of breath. Every cell in our bodies needs oxygen to function properly. So it’s no surprise that research shows that a regular practice of controlled breathing can decrease the effects of stress on the body and increase overall physical and mental health.  If you ask me, I’ll tell you exercise is the best solution.

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