What is Stress and Why it Effects our Daily Lives
Stress is a normal response to the body’s adaptation to the stresses and aggression it undergoes. It triggers a succession of reactions that allow the body to manage the situation and regulate the stress caused by this triggering event.
People react to stress in different ways. There are some general signs of stress:
- constant tiredness (fatigue)
- a change in eating habits
- an increase in the use of alcohol, tobacco or drugs
- a change in your usual bowel or bladder habits
- aches or pains not caused by exercise
- a change in your usual sleep patterns
- emotional upsets (anger, anxiety, depression)
The stress process consists of 2 phases:
The alarm phase: The body reacts to this “attack” by stimulating the adrenal glands to release adrenaline and the body can react immediately. The heart rate and blood pressure increase, some muscles contract and glucose is released into the blood.
The resistance phase: The body then releases other hormones, including cortisol (a hormone involved in the regulation of blood pressure, cardiovascular function, immune function), dopamine (= pleasure hormone), endorphins (= welfare hormones), serotonin (= sleep hormone and soothing).
We are generally not aware of the stress that we live in everyday life. It ends up accumulate in the long run. “Stress is a physiological response of the body to a threat, explains Pierrich Plusquellec, co-director of the Center for Studies on Human Stress at the Montreal Mental Health University Institute. “When our brain perceives a threat, there is a discharge of cortisol. These threats come from the way our brain interprets our daily lives. “A threat is perceived in the presence of one of four criteria: lack of control, unpredictability, novelty, and the threat of the ego. . “All elements of urbanity, such as living on one another or depending on the structures of the city, create new potentially stressful situations.” Of course, in the exceptional cases of unhealthy housing, infestations bed bugs, the stress level is skyrocketing.
The repercussion of stress on the person depends on 3 major factors: its intensity, its duration, its accumulation.
Stress manifests itself in several ways:
1) Physically with fatigue, which is the most common symptom, muscle pain due to tension, headaches, digestive disorders.
2) On the psychological and behavioural level, the person becomes more and more irritable, impatient; nothing disturbs him. he cannot bear the hardships, setbacks and other unforeseen things. It can close on itself and experience difficulties of concentration and memory problems; his sleep is disrupted which decreases recovery and increases fatigue.
However, stress does not seem to have the same impact for everyone. In the face of similar situations, individuals react differently, and three broad profiles of stressed people could be distinguished:
1 °) Those who simply know, innately or acquired, manage this natural phenomenon. It is the lucky ones who manage to stand back and have the right reaction within the time limit.
2 °) Those who turn their stress into aggression, becoming at least unpleasant for those around them.
3 °) Those who do not express their stress and suffer it in silence. They keep everything for themselves and are the victims. Stress can then promote the emergence of many
physical and psychological pathologies, such as fatigue, anger, migraine, gastric acidity, high blood pressure, disorders of certain hormonal glands.
The list of consequences related to too much stress is long. It is estimated that one in two tinnitus is related to stress. If it is better to know the possible consequences of stress of this type and not wait to reach such extremes to consider solutions, this does not mean that stress is the universal cause of disease. It would be too simple and it’s completely wrong.
How to manage stress
Studies have shown that an individual must practice at least half an hour of sport a day (walking, it counts!). Even if you do not like sports much, opt for a discipline to your liking. For example go to a swimming pool, a small jogging, anything to release tension.
There are a lot of choices since all sports activities can eliminate stress.
If you are not a great sportsman, you can start smoothly: swimming, jogging, a martial art, dancing, cycling, etc.
Yoga is an excellent technique for overcoming anxiety. This oriental practice makes it possible to rebalance the energy at the level of the belly and viscera. Thus, the practitioner finds a certain serenity. Ideal to face the trials of life!
Yoga helps to manage stress and improve one’s well-being. Practicing yoga once a week offers a moment of relaxation, letting go and self-knowledge. There are a multitude of similar therapies that aim to rebalance the energy of the body at the level of the belly.
There are many disciplines based on this same principle:
- reiki, shiatsu, Jin Shin Jyutsu;
- Qi Qong, Tai Chi Chuan, etc.