Sweat the Small Stuff
is a feeling of apprehension or fear that lingers. The source
for this uneasiness is not always known or recognised which
adds to the distress: "Everything stresses me out."
"I am always worried."
is also known as Feeling uptight; Stress; Tension; Jitteriness;
is not a disease and is a normal part of everyone's life.
Stress in small quantities is good: it makes us more productive.
For example, the fear of a bad grade can make the a student
study more attentively.
too much stress is unhealthy and counterproductive. The same
student, if he was recently mugged and or is getting over
the sudden death of a friend will not be able to study as
well. Persistent and unrelenting stress is called anxiety.
is an emotion often accompanied by various physical symptoms.
These can include twitching or trembling, muscle tension,
headaches, sweating , dry mouth or difficulty swallowing.
Some people also report dizziness, a rapid or irregular heart
rate, increased rate of respiration, diarrhoea, or frequent
need to urinate when they are anxious. Fatigue, irritable
mood, sleeping difficulties, decreased concentration, sexual
problems and nightmares are also common.
are more sensitive to stress and are more likely to develop
anxiety disorders. This can be caused either by genetic predispositions
or by previous (particularly early childhood) exposure to
certain stresses. Other times it is simply a question of how
stressful the current environment is.
*actual danger: very often stress is an appropriate reaction
*emotional stress such as grief and depression often lead
*physical stress such as a medical illness
*medication side effects
*drugs including caffeine, cold remedies, sympathomimetics,
decongestants, bronchodilators, tricyclic antidepressants
and thyroid supplements
*withdrawal from drugs (including caffeine and nicotine)
*substance abuse or withdrawal (including alcohol)
*poor diet (deficiency of Vitamin B12)
*thyroid problems (hyperthyroid disease mostly)
*low blood sugar
*in extremely rare cases, a tumor of the adrenal gland
Finding what is causing the anxiety and addressing it is the
preferred and most effective solution. Unfortunately, this
is not always possible.
step is to take an inventory of what you think might be making
you "stresses out." What do you worry about most?
Is there something constantly on your mind? Does anything
in particular make you sad or depressed?
you trust who will listen to you. Very often, talking can
help relieve anxiety. Most communities have resources like
self-help groups and hotlines which can help with problems
of anxiety. Ministers, social workers, friends, neighbors,
and family can all play a therapeutic role.
take a look at your lifestyle. Do you eat well? Do you sleep
enough? Are you exercising? How much caffeine do you take
in a single day?
techniques, including biofeedback and relaxation therapy,
to reduce muscle tension. Biofeedback is a process of monitoring
body functions (such as the tightness of certain muscle groups)
and altering these functions through relaxation. Follow a
regular energetic exercise routine using aerobic exercise
using "mood-altering" drugs when overwhelmed by
life's problems. These drugs will not provide a solution and
can often cause additional difficulties.
professional help when:
*you are unable to work because of anxiety, self-treatment
has failed, or the cause of the anxiety is unknown.
*there is a sudden feeling of panic.
*problems cannot be resolved without outside, professional
health care provider is a valuable resource. He or she can
determine with you if your anxiety would be best evaluated
and possibly treated by a mental health care professional.
to expect at your health care provider's office
The medical history will be obtained and a physical examination
performed. Medical history questions documenting anxiety,
stress, or tension in detail may include:
*When did the anxiety begin?
*What physical symptoms develop that make you feel anxious?
*What physical symptoms do you have that you are worried about?
*What makes the anxiety better?
*What makes it worse?
*What other symptoms are also present?
attention will be paid to your pulse, respiratory rate and
blood pressure. Diagnostic tests may include blood tests as
well as an electrocardiogram (EKG).
anxiety is not accompanied by any worrisome physical signs
and symptoms, a referral to a mental health care professional
may be recommended for appropriate treatment.
such as cognitive-behavioral therapy (CBT) has been shown
to significantly decrease anxiety. In some cases, medications
such as benzodiazepines or antidepressants may be appropriate.
(R) thedailystar.net 2004