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Stress is created when we are unable to appropriately respond to threatening events or emotions, negatively impacting our physical and emotional well-being. Stress hormones are released into our system, and if left unresolved can create anxiety, irritability, sleeping issues, anger, and depression, as well as many physical symptoms. Physical symptoms include headaches, heart disease, hives, stomach acid, high-blood pressure, constipation, diarrhea, tiredness, muscle tension, as well as difficulty concentrating. If you are experiencing physical symptoms which you believe to be stress related, then stress reduction should become a priority in your life. The following techniques can be very helpful in reducing stress.

Many stress reduction techniques work to calm the stress hormones by releasing endorphins into our systems. Stress reduction may include, deep breathing, maintaining a healthy life-style, enjoying an active sex life, taking a brisk walk to breathe in some fresh air, yoga, meditation, aromatherapy, and just about any activity that you find enjoyable and relaxing. In addition to implementing stress reduction techniques, it is also necessary to pay close attention to, and avoid situations which are negative and contribute to the production of stress in our lives. Work to identify your triggers to stress in order to avoid those triggers and set limits on your exposure to negativity from others. If self-help techniques are not helpful, or your daily functioning is significantly impaired then professional help should be sought.

Stress is a serious issue, not to be taken lightly nor ignored. If you are uncertain about the level of stress you are currently experiencing, the following link will provide a guideline for your decision as to whether or not you should seek professional treatment for stress.

We must also bear in mind that stress is not always a synonym for distress. Exciting events like a roller coaster ride which may cause anxiety for some can actually be exciting and pleasurable for others. This would be considered "good" stress. Increased "good" stress may also increase productivity, but only to a point, then things tend to quickly deteriorate. It is a delicate balance which is easily tipped, causing us to become less productive and more self-destructive.

The following is a link to a "De-Stress Kit" offered through a company called Heart Math and is a very useful tool for reducing stress and restoring emotional balance
Click for free Download

If stress goes untreated it may lead to the creation of Anxiety Disorders.

The information below contains links that will redirect you to the National Institute for Mental Health for more information.

What are Anxiety Disorders?

Anxiety is a normal reaction to stress. It helps one deal with a tense situation in the office, study harder for an exam, keep focused on an important speech. In general, it helps one cope. But when anxiety becomes an excessive, irrational dread of everyday situations, it has become a disabling disorder. More about Anxiety Disorders »

Five major types of anxiety disorders are:

Generalized Anxiety Disorder

Obsessive-Compulsive Disorder (OCD)

Panic Disorder

Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD)


Effective treatments for anxiety disorders are available, and research is yielding new, improved therapies that can help most people with anxiety disorders lead productive, fulfilling lives. More about Treatment »

Related Information

Social Phobia (or Social Anxiety Disorder)

Information on coping with traumatic events

Information about medications

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