What's stress got to do with it? [part 1]

We experience it all the time. A cold that just doesn't seem to go away. A pulled muscle that's taking a long time to recover. Small amounts of memory loss. Sometimes more serious conditions underlie these symptoms. But the majority of the time, for the majority of people, it's one thing: stress! Stress is the chameleon of causes - it manifests in so many different ways at different times of our lives.

Everyone reacts differently when they hear the word 'stress.' The majority of society attaches a negative connotation to the word. Subconsciously, they associate weakness or inability or even craziness to ‘stress.’ However, in the medical community, we refer to stress as the physical and mental toll an individual suffers due to poor coping. Let's face it. We are all constantly struggling to be better in the roles we play: mothers, fathers, colleagues, siblings, students, and citizens, to name a few.

But, you say, “Me? I’m not stressed. I’m dealing with life just fine.” If that’s true, you’re very fortunate indeed. However, if stress stays unacknowledged and unconfronted, it subtly overwhelms the emotional cortex of the brain. Palpitations, difficulty breathing, rash, diarrhea, weight loss or weight gain are all possible manifestations in an individual overwhelmed with stress over a long period of time. Think of stress as a wild weed in your pretty, little garden – ignoring it will only empower it more over time. 

The take home: Don’t ignore stress! It’s here to stay!

 

So what can we do about it? Don’t stress. Stay tuned for Part 2.

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