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Key Ways to Spot Stress and Deal With It

By Sandy Schroeder

Nobody has to tell you stress is stalking you if you suddenly run into new deadlines, unexpected financial issues, or family problems, but the physical symptoms and patterns can be all different. The more you know, the easier it will be to cope.

Some people react quickly and take steps to find solutions. Others need a little help to spot all of the symptoms and to figure out what actually is happening.

What Stress Does to the Body

Stress may create digestion problems for you or handicap your immune system leaving you with a cold. See how these symptoms work for you.

  • Breathing becomes faster
  • Blood pressure and pulse accelerate
  • Digestion slows way down
  • The immune system lags
  • Muscles tense
  • Sleeplessness follows

Stress Has Levels Too

It's also important to know that there are different levels of stress. Depending on the situation that triggered your stress, you may be done with it soon, or deeply involved in an ongoing problem. Here are three different levels that you should be aware of.

Sharp Immediate Stress

This is the short-term acute stress that most of us run into on a daily basis. A problem flares at work or at home, and we have to dive in and deal with it. Arguments, deadlines, and unexpected events can leave us with headaches and an overwhelming tiredness, but it all lifts when we find solutions and work our way through it. Of course, this sort of stress can become chronic and more damaging if it continues to flare up.

Continuing Stress Flare Ups

Some people tend to trigger spurts of stress because of their temperament, lack of organization, or choice of work and friends. Most of us know someone like this. They usually do OK, but they tend to have flare-ups of problems on a fairly regular basis. This kind of lifestyle can lead to high blood pressure and heart disease if there are no changes.

Ongoing Serious Stress

Chronic stress is the most harmful, often lingering for a long time with issues such as financial struggles, an unhappy marriage or a difficult family.  You may know of someone who has struggled throughout their life with ongoing stress. When that happens, the person may simply stop looking for solutions and slip into depression. If you know someone like this, encourage them to see their doctor and a therapist to find relief and healthy solutions.

If you see yourself in these descriptions, take steps to work on solutions and seek help with your doctor and a therapist if you need it.

To learn more about your health, wellness and fitness, see your local chiropractor at The Joint Chiropractic in Irvine, Calif.

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