Stress, health and Disease

Everyone has stress. It is a normal part of life. But when people constantly react to stressful situations without making adjustments, it is harmful to their health and mental.

In stress and anxiety, people begin to tremble, and their hands become cold and clammy, there is a sinking feeling in the stomach, an increased rate of respiration and dryness of the mouth.

Chronic stress can wear down the body’s immune system leading to a variety of mental and physical symptoms such as Dizziness, loss of interest headache, grinding teeth, body ache, clenched jaws and fists, fatigue, tiredness and exhaustion etc.

So, the relationship between stress and disease is an enormous area of discourse that fires the popular imagination. Although it is difficult to correlate stress and disease.

Prolonged anxiety and tension can produce physiological disorders involving specific body organs ranging from minor ailments like eczema, arthritis, palpitations, indigestion, diarrhoea, constipation and disturbed sleep.

But prolonged stress can be increased major disorders like hypertension, ischemic heart disease, diabetes or cancer, which are life-threatening by lowering our resistance.

The most common stress-related diseases are:

1) Cardiovascular disorder

a) Hypertension — it is directly related to stress on people. Many of our daily activities require intense alertness. This puts a lot of pressure, stress and anxiety on an individual. Uncontrolled blood pressure can strain the heart and contribute to the hardening of blood vessels. This in turn premature heart attack, neurological problems and other diseases of the blood vessels.

2) Chronic heart disease – in chronic heart disease, angina occurs, which is the tight gripping pain in the precordial region which may radiate to the left arm, neck or jaw. When the blood supply is inadequate for the heart, it happens because of narrowing arteries, so stress is a major contributor to the development of atherosclerosis, spasm of coronary arteries.

3) Palpitation- palpitation occurring frequently as a response to stress can damage the heart.

4) Headache( Migraine/ tension) – stress can lead to the contribution of muscles on the scalp, neck and forehead causing tension headache. Migraine is the throbbing pain and stress is said to be an important trigger for migraine.

4) Ulcer- in the condition of stress and anxiety, physical discomfort may become so magnified as to be incapacitating.

5) Chronic Fatigue – A constant feeling of fatigue or tiredness is the commonest symptom of stress. Fatigue can develop due to stress whether physical, mental or emotional.

6) Irritable Bowel Syndrome – abdominal pain, diarrhoea alternating with constipation, sense of incomplete evacuation, bloating occurs due to stress also.

So, stress can be a major factor in psychological problems like depression, phobia and anxiety. The stress may or may not be directly related to the cause of these disorders, but its presence for prolonged periods is certainly related to the worsening of the conditions.

In life, we all face disappointments and unpleasant situations and the common response to these is to feel depressed.

A depressed person loses initiative and interest in everything going around him/her. So, it is hard to feel that any diseases in which stress can not play an aggravating role or any part of the body that is not affected.

Remember a little bit of stress is required in life for proper functioning. But the prolonged high level of stress can ruin our life— both physical and mental.

It is my advice to people to live a longer life…… stress-free

Dr S.k.jha


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