Sunday, May 16, 2010

How Does Stress Affect Health � Adversely!

Stress is a medical term for a range of strong external stimuli, both physiological and psychological that can cause a physiological response called the general adaptation syndrome. The study of �how does stress affect health?� is highly interesting. Here�s all you need to know about how does stress affect health

Stress and its affect on health �

Hans Selye first described stress in the journal �nature�. He was able to separate the physical effects of stress from other physical symptoms that patients suffered.

Stress can have three stages

�alarm reaction - the body detects external stimulus
�adaptation - the body can engage defensive countermeasures against the stressor
�exhaustion - the body starts to run out of defenses

Depending upon how does stress affect health, there are two types of stress, eustress that is positive stress and distress which is negative stress, roughly meaning challenge and overload. Both types can be due to negative or positive events. For example, if a person both wins the lottery and has a beloved relative die on the same day, one event does not cancel the other � both are stressful events in themselves.

Eustress is essential to life, like exercise to a muscle but distress can cause disease. It is interesting to note when studying how does stress affect heath, that what causes distress for one person may cause eustress for another. This depends upon the life perception of an individual. Also when the word stress is used alone, it typically refers to distress.

An important point while learning about �how does stress affect health?� is knowing that stress can directly and indirectly contribute to many general or specific disorders of both body and mind. It can have a major impact on the physical functioning of the body. Such stress raises the level of adrenaline and corticosterone in the body, which in turn raises the heart rate, respiration, and blood pressure and this puts more physical stress on bodily organs. Long term stress can be a contributing factor in heart disease, high BP, stroke and other illnesses.

Once one understands how does stress affect health, coping with stress immediately becomes very important. This because, the study of �how does stress affect health?� makes us realize the adverse affects of stress and the importance of dealing with it aptly and quickly.

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