Risks Of Stress
What is Stress?
Stress can be defined as the three way relationship between
demands on individuals, our feelings about those demands and
our ability to deal with them. Stress happens more often in
1. Demands are
2. The amount of
control we have is low.
3. There is very
little support or help available for us.
Who is affected the most by stress?
Nearly everybody experiences stressful events or situations
that overwhelm our natural coping mechanisms. Even though some individuals
are biologically prone to stress, there are many outside
factors that influence susceptibility also.
Studies show that some people are more vulnerable to the cause
of stress than others. Older adults; women in
general, particularly working mothers and pregnant women; less
educated people; divorced or widowed people; individuals
experiencing financial strains such as long-term unemployment;
individuals who are the targets of discrimination; uninsured
and underinsured people; and individuals who simply live in
cities all seem to be mostly vulnerable to health related
Individuals who are less emotionally stable or have high
anxiety levels have a tendency to experience some events as
more stressful than healthy people do. And not having an established
network of family and friends predisposes us to stress related
health problems like heart disease and
Caregivers, children and medical professionals are also
commonly found to be at higher risk for stress-associated
Workplace stress is particularly likely to be chronic because
it represents such a big part of life. Stress decreases a worker's
effectiveness by impairing concentration, causing sleeplessness
and increasing the risk of illness, back problems, accidents
and lost time. At
its worst extremes, stress that places a burden on people’s
hearts and circulation can habitually be
Japanese have a word for sudden death attributable to
Medical Effects of Chronic Stress
The risks of stress usually depend on the severity of the
stress on the individual. The stress reaction of the
body is like an airplane getting ready to take
Practically all systems, like the heart and blood
vessels, the immune system, the digestive system, the
lungs, the sensory organs, and the brain are adapted to
meet the perceived danger.
A stress-filled life really appears to increase the odds of
heart disease and stroke down the road. Researchers have discovered
that after middle-age, those who report chronic stress face a
somewhat higher risk of fatal or non-fatal heart disease or
stroke over the years. It is now believed that
constant stress takes its toll on our arteries, causing
chronically high levels of stress hormones and pushing
individuals to maintain unhealthy habits like
Stressed-out men are twice as likely as their peers to die of a
stroke. There are
weaker such findings among women, which is possibly due to the
rather low number of heart disease and stroke cases among
women, as opposed to a resistance to the health causes of
Women seem slightly more prone to the causes of stress than
Simply put, a lot of stress places you at dire risk for health
it comes from one event or the accumulation of many small
events, stress causes big physical alterations that sometimes
can lead to health problems. Here is a list of several of
Our heart rates rise, to move blood to our muscles
Our blood pressures rise.
Our digestion slows down.
Our breathing rates increase.
Our perspiration goes up.
We feel a rush of strength first, but after a while stress
makes us feel weaker.
These responses facilitated our ancestors to survive threats by
preparing for either "fight or flight." Nowadays, our bodies
still react the same way, but the events that cause stress do
not need this ancient method.
Other Medical risks of stress consist of:
High blood pressure
Ulcers and digestive disorders
Alcohol and drug dependencies
Allergies and skin diseases
Depressed immune system
More colds and infections
We should learn ways to relieve stress, because when it
continues to hurt us for very long or happens so repeatedly, it
evidently can cause many serious health