Health Minute: Stress Management/ Limiting Stress
We have received a lot of questions about stress, and what do to limit stressors as part of your everyday. Could you give us just a few examples of what potential stressors could be impacting our listeners?
Dr. Jain: Absolutely, so stress can be caused by several factors, including family, work, extracurricular activities and even your own health. External factors play a role as well, like what’s in the news and going on in the world. Even if you aren’t directly impacted by certain events, they can still play a role in your stress levels. These factors can all cause a varying amount of stress and depending on the severity can be long lasting or short term.
I know there are so many potential examples of stressful situations, do you have any tips for our listeners to help them limit the stress they may be experiencing?
Dr. Jain: Take some time to figure out what is causing the stress and limit it at the source. Spend more time on activities you enjoy, like taking a walk, art, playing sports, anything that brings you happiness. Activities that also keep you active will help with both your mental and physical health as well. I tell people more often now than before to limit their news watching or reading. Too much of the constant bad news can have a impact on your mental health so limiting it to an appropriate amount and keeping it from those times when destressing is important like bedtimes is important.
That is so important to remember! I know many people who believe in taking a walk or exercising when they are stressed. How important is it to talk to someone when you feel stressed?
Dr. Jain: Talking to a friend, confidante or professional therapist can be a very good choice for your health. Sometimes sharing what is stressing you with others can help limit its powerful impact on your wellbeing. When you feel like you need to talk to someone, always reach out! If you can’t reach out to someone for whatever reason, writing it down in a journal can be helpful too.
I know it always helps me to talk with others I trust when I am feeling stressed and overwhelmed. What can happen if you don’t take control of the stress in your life?
Dr. Jain: Dealing with a little bit of stress is normal, as we mentioned it is very common for people to experience stress. But if stress lasts for an extended period, it can have a detrimental impact on your health, potentially causing high blood pressure, weight gain, skin conditions, anxiety, depression and more. We all experienced a tremendous amount of stress over the last few years due to the pandemic and other things going on in the world. That is a prolonged period and if you are still experiencing high levels of stress and physical symptoms, it’s important to talk to someone like your doctor or other healthcare professional.
So, the importance of speaking out is paramount to maintaining your long-term health.
Dr. Jain: Absolutely, don’t be afraid to share with your healthcare provider if you are experiencing any of these symptoms. It is best to intervene as soon as possible when you notice any of these conditions occurring.