It is now well known that people of modern age suffer greatly from disorders of stress. Stress is basic to life – no matter how wealthy, powerful, good looking, or happy you might be. Not all stress results in health problems. Mild stress can be stimulating, motivating, and sometimes even desirable. But, as it becomes more severe, stress can bring on physical, psychological, and behamvioural problems. In this article we will read about how stress leads to health problem..
Indications are found that 75% of human diseases are due to stress. During stressful period, anxiety and nervousness are common symptoms. When these become intense and habitual phobia develops. A phobia refers to irrational fear over an object, person, or an animal or situations. The person feels unduly anxious when he/she comes across a phobia situation and hence always tries to avoid them. Some of the common phobias are :
Social Phobia – fear of addressing to public audience e.g. State fear.
Claustrophobia – fear of closed places.
Anxiety refers to a vague unpleasant feeling of impending threat and danger. A person with several anxieties will always be worried, unclear confused in thinking, indecisive etc. Sometimes excessive anxiety leads to speech problems like stuttering and stammering, urinary problems like bedwetting as commonly seen among children.
STRESS AND THE IMMUNE SYSTEMS
We are constantly exposed to various germs and viruses but we do not fall ill. This is because we have got a protective machine inside out body which is called the immune system. But stress can weaken this immune system also which can make us victim of many diseases. If the stress is for a shorter period there is no much damage, but if the stress prolongs, it results in serious illness as cancer, heart disease, headache, asthma and peptic ulcer. It is found that individuals who are not under stress. This is attributed to the fact that intense stresses reduce body’s immune system, thus making the person easily infected.
STRESS AND HEALTH PROBLEMS
It is an accepted fact that certain cardiac problems like hypertension and heartaches are caused due to emotional strain the person undergoes. Such emotional stress caused may be due to frustration, intense anger, fear, depression or shock.
Eating disorders can also be caused due to preoccupation with stressful situations. Sleep disorders can also occur due to stress. Sleep disorders may be difficult in going to sleep or disturbed sleep or not getting sleep at all (insomnia). A person who is said to experience frequently intense emotions such a anger, jealousy, hatred, fear, panic, often complain about ulcer problems too. In fact intense fear or guilt can lead to some of the sexual problems.
The most common stress relation to health problems are cold and tension headache. Scientists say that there is no specific medicine for common cold and tension headache. These problems are when the individual is undergoing stressful experience but may vanish under pleasant and happy occasion. Pills for killing pain and cold give temporary relief. Hence it is necessary to know the root cause of the stress for permanent solution for these health problems. For e.g. a student might het headache whenever he is asked to give a test / exam.
Psychosomatic diseases like peptic-ulcer, asthma, essential hypertension (high BP) are also due to stress. You would have known that many die due to heart attack at a young age. Those are Mr. Victims of stress.
The combination of repeated stress and the weakness of a particular systems lead to psychosomatic diseases, for e.g. a person gets ulcer, when under stress and his stomach (digestive system) becomes weak. These people also do not express their emotion outwardly. For example- if a person gets angry he must show it out in an appropriate way but if he keeps within himself repeatedly, he is likely to get ulcer we should be asked to learn the proper means and ways of expressing our emotions outwardly for maintaining the good health.
These problems are experienced by the individual either mildy or to moderate levels. A less often occurring, severe disorder is known as post-traumatic stress disorder. The symptoms include anxiety, apprehension, chronic tension, sleep disorders like insomnia or sleepless nights, nightmares, withdrawal behavior etc. this disorder occurs when the person experience severe stress after a traumatic life threatening experience like accidents, being victimized either physically and mentally as in rape, or sexual harassment, death of near ones etc.
In many severe cases of experience of intense stress then the individual must consult the psychologist for immediate help or be institutionalized for the necessary period of time. Mild to moderate stress can be easily relieved if one does regular physical experience, by doing progressive relaxation, meditation, by thinking positively, seeking social activities which are relaxing and pleasurable or following certain management techniques like time management. Stress reduction programmers etc. Medication such as…… stress drugs must be used only in severe cases and with medical supervision.