27 July 2015
Stress is defined as the actual or perceived threat of our psychological and physiological integrity with its attendant physiological and behavioral responses.
Stress is a key mechanism of homeostasis (i.e. the ability of the organism to maintain constant conditions of the interior environment as eg. Temperature, in spite of external changes) having flexibly to help us survive. It is a mechanism that is essential for our operation which also has been described as a response “fight or flight”.
The physiological response to stress happens via the stress system, which is localized in both the central nervous system and in peripheral organs. Eventually “products” of the stress system is adrenaline (epinephrine), noradrenaline (or norepinephrine), and cortisol, known as the stress hormone.
However, when there is no successful adaptation and response to stress, we are led in dysomoiostasi, a condition which can borne our organization in a long term or short term basis. The unsuccessful adjustment or response may be caused by either deficiency or excess activity of the stress system.
The stressors or else the external or internal stimuli that activate the stress system, are distinguished by content, physical (eg. The earthquake, a wild animal, etc) and psychological (eg. Feeling of loneliness). Based on their duration and their intensity are divided into acute, chronic, daily and significant events / life changes.
The symptoms of stress
The symptoms associated with stress distinguished:
In symptoms 1st degree, concerning behavior, cognitive functions and emotional status (eg, irritability, jealousy, impatience, criticism and difficulty concentrating and memorizing, reduced creativity, a sense of resignation, anger)
In the second grade symptoms which are primarily but not physically hardcore (eg. Loss of appetite, constipation or diarrhea, insomnia, sweating, headache, dizziness, dyspnea, nausea, eczema, increased blood pressure, cramps and spasms)
In grade 3 symptoms that are associated with serious disorders and diseases such as cardiovascular diseases, diseases related to the immune system, even with certain forms of tumors. Examples of 3rd grade symptoms can be chest pain, migraine, tremor, the fainting episodes, nervous tics, sleep disorders, spasms, back pain / neck / back, eczema and psoriasis, pruritus, dyspepsia etc.
Differences stress – Stress
Although to date the concepts of stress and anxiety overlap considerably and are used by scientists to describe many times the same situation, there are some important differences.
The adaptation to stress the system includes physiological and behavioral responses to threatening stimuli and stress is defined as an unpleasant distinct from sensation risks, stress and anxiety. Thus, the stress is more bodily reactions and behavioral reactions while anxiety is a feeling.
In addition, the stress system is activated for one threatening situation the “here and now” and specific stimulus, while stress can be caused by a more general and vague concern, irrespective of time and stimulus.
Although anxiety and stress are two different notions are largely interrelated and may create a vicious circle, as the inability for someone to have stress can lead to anxiety disorders, but also the anxiety disorder itself may weaken the individual to successfully manage the stress.
The usual way to control stress is to adopt unhealthy behaviours, such as eating a lot of sweets, excessive alcohol use, smoking, lack of routine in getting up and falling asleep, lack of exercise and more. These methods, proven suppress the stress system, but long term, are important risk factors for many modern diseases.
Effective stress management is based on a healthy lifestyle, a balanced diet, regular exercise and daily routine existence. In addition to this, play an important role in learning various techniques of mind and body that help as effective, such as diaphragmatic breathing, progressive muscle relaxation, the guided visualization, meditation, replacement of dysfunctional thoughts that cause perceived stress, mental illustration, creative writing, focus on the “here and now” and more.