Stress is the body’s reaction to any situation that necessitates a response, and these situations can be positive or negative. Whether it’s having a baby or dealing with the loss of a job, stressful events take a toll on our minds and bodies in more ways than we realize. To deal with stress in a healthy way, we must recognize where this feeling comes from, how it affects us, and the best way to manage our stress.
Sources of Stress
Everyone handles stressful events differently. While one person may not be significantly affected by a change in employment status, another person may feel like their world has been turned upside down. With this in mind, some sources of stress are fairly universal. Many people experience stress from life transitions related to work, including starting a new job, unemployment, having a difficult boss or coworker, as well as family-related events like the birth or death of a family member, a marriage, or a divorce. There can be positive or negative reactions for each of these stressors, but each individual will respond to these sources of stress differently.
Our reactions to stress can be affected by past exposure to stressful events, learned stress management techniques, emotional problems, and mental illness. It is important to be patient with those around you who are experiencing stress, as they may react or manage their feelings differently than you.
How Stress Affects Your Body
Whether we recognize it or not, stress impacts our bodies in many significant ways. As everyone experiences stress differently, physical symptoms of stress vary from person to person. Common reactions to stress include headaches, stomach problems, insomnia, chest pain or rapid heartbeat, and chronic pain or tension, especially in the head, back, and stomach. These reactions can be an immediate response to a stressful situation or develop gradually, so be aware of your physical reactions to stress and how they change over time.
How Stress Affects Your Mind
There are also numerous mental and behavioral reactions to stress that may feel helpful in the moment but can cause damage in the long term. From manageable symptoms like racing thoughts and forgetfulness to more serious reactions like feeling depressed or anxious, the impact of these symptoms should not be underestimated. While many may be able to overcome their physical or mental manifestations of stress quickly and easily, others may need time and stress management techniques to overcome difficult situations.
How To Manage Your Stress
To manage the unexpected challenges that life throws at us, each person needs to develop stress management techniques that suit the individual’s needs. Commonly used relaxation techniques such as breathing exercises, yoga, and meditation can combat some of our mental reactions to stress like panic, racing thoughts, or anxiety. Other ways to cope with stress are designed to help promote positive responses in the long term. Eating healthy, balanced meals, prioritizing sleep, devoting time to hobbies, and relying on friends and family can help prevent negative reactions to stress and minimize the use of unhealthy coping mechanisms like alcohol, drugs, or cigarettes.
If you are experiencing chronic headaches or general pain, consider seeing a chiropractor to relieve some of your pain. Therapists, counselors, and other medical professionals can also help you take control of your reactions to stress. Take steps to manage your stress so you don’t feel overwhelmed when unexpected or unplanned events impact your life.
At All American Healthcare, we care about every aspect of your health, including your mental and physical well-being. If you are experiencing stress in any part of your life, the medical staff at All American Healthcare is here to help. If you are looking to combat chronic pain or headaches with chiropractic care, the caring staff at All American Healthcare is here for you. All of our chiropractic consultations are free, and insurance covers the majority of our services. Schedule an appointment at All American Healthcare today, and start living a healthier life.