Body Signs That Reveal the Strain; Health&Fitness / STRESS SPECIAL

The Evening Standard (London, England), March 9, 2004 | Go to article overview

Body Signs That Reveal the Strain; Health&Fitness / STRESS SPECIAL


Byline: PAT HAGAN

The best way to conquer stress is to heed your body's early warning system. We show you how to recognise the different symptoms THEY are the classic signs of stress - tense shoulders, throbbing head and a sudden increase in irritability.

But medical evidence is mounting to suggest that the real effects of a stressful life are far more extensive.

From the brain to our feet, the cumulative burden of living with stress day in and day out can be measured in virtually every part of our body. These effects can vary from skin blemishes to potentially fatal damage to the heart.

Last year, for example, Swedish researchers discovered stressed women were twice as likely to develop breast cancer.

"Many people with stress are very aware of how it is affecting their body," says Ashok Gupta, director of the Harley Street Stress Management Clinic.

"But others just keep going because they may not realise what their body is telling them. I deal with people all the time who have stress but have also developed physical illnesses as a result."

Prolonged pressure in life is damaging because our bodies were designed only to cope with short bursts of stress. The so-called "fight or flight" syndrome - where the heart pounds, blood is diverted to the muscles and breathing becomes more shallow - is meant to help us either flee or do battle with potential enemies.

"Our stress response is designed to deal with physical threats," says Gupta.

"But in the modern world the stresses are mental rather than physical.

There's nothing wrong with this unless it becomes continuous - in which case it can become toxic to the body."

So how does daily pressure affect different parts of the body and what can you do to combat the effects?

. For more information visit www.harleystressclinic.com

Brain

When the brain senses danger, it releases extra supplies of the hormone cortisol. Its job is to block inflammation at the site of any potential wounds. It was a handy DIY repair kit in man's hunter-gatherer days but is not so vital in the office environment.

Excess cortisol is known to increase blood pressure.

Stress tip: The brain is where the effects of stress always begin. Practise relaxation techniques such as deep breathing and meditation.

Hair

Under extreme stress, hair can die off faster than it grows. The body's struggle to cope with added pressure can cause more hair to go into the loss-phase. Highly stressed people sometimes find clumps of hair on their pillow in the morning. But it usually grows back in time.

Stress tip: Try Indian head massage - it improves blood flow to hair follicles.

Neck

Neck pain is one of the classic indicators of stress. If you are battling against excessive workload, domestic problems and financial worries, it's a natural reaction for your muscles to tense up. …

The rest of this article is only available to active members of Questia

Sign up now for a free, 1-day trial and receive full access to:

  • Questia's entire collection
  • Automatic bibliography creation
  • More helpful research tools like notes, citations, and highlights
  • Ad-free environment

Already a member? Log in now.

Notes for this article

Add a new note
If you are trying to select text to create highlights or citations, remember that you must now click or tap on the first word, and then click or tap on the last word.
One moment ...
Default project is now your active project.
Project items

Items saved from this article

This article has been saved
Highlights (0)
Some of your highlights are legacy items.

Highlights saved before July 30, 2012 will not be displayed on their respective source pages.

You can easily re-create the highlights by opening the book page or article, selecting the text, and clicking “Highlight.”

Citations (0)
Some of your citations are legacy items.

Any citation created before July 30, 2012 will labeled as a “Cited page.” New citations will be saved as cited passages, pages or articles.

We also added the ability to view new citations from your projects or the book or article where you created them.

Notes (0)
Bookmarks (0)

You have no saved items from this article

Project items include:
  • Saved book/article
  • Highlights
  • Quotes/citations
  • Notes
  • Bookmarks
Notes
Cite this article

Cited article

Style
Citations are available only to our active members.
Sign up now to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

(Einhorn, 1992, p. 25)

(Einhorn 25)

1

1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

Cited article

Body Signs That Reveal the Strain; Health&Fitness / STRESS SPECIAL
Settings

Settings

Typeface
Text size Smaller Larger Reset View mode
Search within

Search within this article

Look up

Look up a word

  • Dictionary
  • Thesaurus
Please submit a word or phrase above.
Print this page

Print this page

Why can't I print more than one page at a time?

Full screen

matching results for page

Cited passage

Style
Citations are available only to our active members.
Sign up now to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

"Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn, 1992, p. 25).

"Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn 25)

"Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences."1

1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

Cited passage

Thanks for trying Questia!

Please continue trying out our research tools, but please note, full functionality is available only to our active members.

Your work will be lost once you leave this Web page.

For full access in an ad-free environment, sign up now for a FREE, 1-day trial.

Already a member? Log in now.