As the Oxford Dictionary defines it, Stress is "a state of mental or emotional strain or tension resulting from adverse or demanding circumstances".
Almost everybody in this world is exposed to experiencing Stress. In a matter of fact, according to recent studies, around 75 percent of the population go through stressful events in their lives. What matters the most now is exposing the main causes, consequences, types of stress illnesses and techniques used in order to avoid them in our everyday lives.
The first step is identifying the causes lurking behind feeling the tension. Ask yourself. What makes you stressful? Work? Committment? Too much responsibilities and duties? Housekeeping? Kids and family? Illness? Someone's death? Financial problems? All of these are considered to be "extrinsic causes of stress". Therefore, they are hard to avoid in order to skip the strain. However, by time you can cope with such stressful situations and learn how to deal with and react towards them. Also, there are some "intrinsic causes of stress" like pessimism, lack of determination, negativity, colorless expectations, hopelessness, etc... Unlike the former causes, these can be treated, managed and why not treated.
The second step is recognizing what are the usual consequences and illnesses of constantly living under stress without trying to manage it. They can be both mental and physical. Consequence number one? It is serious health problems! Being exposed to too much stress for too long agitates almost all of your body systems. It can cause the raising of the blood pressure, weekening of the immune system, the speeding up of the aging process, impotence, obesity, and heart attacks and strokes. These deseases are related to physical effects. The psycological effects can be for the most part: "Phobias" ( fear of certain animals like spiders and snakes, fear of heights, fear of open spaces..), "Agoraphobia" (fear of a public place to the point of never leaving one's home), and "Panic Disorder" (sudden and unreasonable panic attacks).
The third and final step is learning about the different techniques used in Stress Management. In most situations medical treatments like Luvox, Aropax, Efexor, Tolvon, Tofranil and Prozac are not necessary as at times they may cause addiction. Hence, psychological treatments are highly recommanded. "Group Therapy" is very helpful. It is not made just for those going through severe cases of depression. On the contrary! It helps you share and discuss your problems with others like yourself finding it hard to control daily stress. "Cognitive behaviour therapy" is very efficient either especially for pessimistic people who are trying to get rid of their ways of thinking and behaviours. "Counselling" with a psychologist is another kind of psychological treatment. But it might cost too much money. That is why I recommande the "Relaxation Therapy" like doing yoga, meditaion, picnics, sailing, etc...
Long- term stress can cause serious illnesses. It is the result of both extrinsic and intrinsic situations. Some are easy to cope and deal with. Others need treatments; both medical and psychological. At serious cases, when the stress reaches its highest levels you have to contact: your doctor (if you have one), psychologist or counsellor, Community mental health service, your local hospital.. Nevertheless, the good news is that by time, you will learn how to treat, encounter, manage and at last prevent Stress.
Written by: Nada Mrabet