A doctor may recommend psychological therapy, such as cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT). One established aim of CBT is to help people deal with chronic stress. In structured sessions, a therapist works to enable a person to modify their behaviors, thoughts, and feelings concerning stressors.
Doctors can offer a number of solutions for stress. These often include therapy to help you develop and strengthen your stress-management skills. Sometimes, medicine is also something that can calm your worries and anxiety. Medical professionals can offer many natural alternatives to you, too, such as meditation.
There is no specific medication for stress. But there are medications that can help reduce or manage some of the signs and symptoms of stress. For example, your doctor might offer to prescribe: Sleeping pills or minor tranquillisers, if you're having trouble sleeping.
Benzodiazepines (also known as tranquilizers) are the most widely prescribed type of medication for anxiety. Drugs such as Xanax (alprazolam), Klonopin (clonazepam), Valium (diazepam), and Ativan (lorazepam) work quickly, typically bringing relief within 30 minutes to an hour.
Stress is not normally considered a mental health problem. But it is connected to our mental health in several ways: Stress can cause mental health problems. And it can make existing problems worse.
People under stress experience mental and physical symptoms, such as irritability, anger, fatigue, muscle pain, digestive troubles, and difficulty sleeping. Anxiety, on the other hand, is defined by persistent, excessive worries that don't go away even in the absence of a stressor.
The treatment of your stress will vary greatly depending on the types of symptoms you are experiencing and how severe they are. Treatment can range from simple reassurance to inpatient care and evaluation in a hospital setting.
How is stress diagnosed? Stress is subjective — not measurable with tests. Only the person experiencing it can determine whether it's present and how severe it feels. A healthcare provider may use questionnaires to understand your stress and how it affects your life.
When to see your GP about your stress levels. If you've tried self-help techniques and they aren't working, you should go to see your GP. They may suggest other coping techniques for you to try or recommend some form of counselling or cognitive behavioural therapy.
But ongoing, chronic stress can cause or worsen many serious health problems, including: Mental health problems, such as depression, anxiety, and personality disorders. Cardiovascular disease, including heart disease, high blood pressure, abnormal heart rhythms, heart attacks, and strokes.
Use clear statements such as “I think I may be depressed” or “I am having trouble with anxiety.” This will help guide them and let them know what direction to go in. Be as open and honest with your doctor as possible.
Mental health conditions, such as depression, or a building sense of frustration, injustice, and anxiety can make some people feel stressed more easily than others. Previous experiences may affect how a person reacts to stressors. Common major life events that can trigger stress include: job issues or retirement.
The primary distinguisher is that anxiety, unlike stress, is often triggered internally by excessive thoughts — judgments about the past, worries about the future, and so on. Although it's unusual to feel unprompted, out-of-the-blue anxiety, it can show up in response to a stressful situation.
To diagnose an anxiety disorder, a doctor performs a physical exam, asks about your symptoms, and recommends a blood test, which helps the doctor determine if another condition, such as hypothyroidism, may be causing your symptoms. The doctor may also ask about any medications you are taking.
For the majority of people with undiagnosed or untreated anxiety disorder, there are many negative consequences, for both the individual and society. These include disability, reduced ability to work leading to loss of productivity, and a high risk of suicide.
Your doctor will probably complete a physical examination and is likely to take blood samples. He or she may also ask you to go for further tests, depending upon his or her initial assessment. This is to rule out any physical causes of your anxiety, such as thyroid problems, diabetes, or heart disease.
Some of the physical signs that your stress levels are too high include: Pain or tension in your head, chest, stomach, or muscles. Your muscles tend to tense up when you're stressed, and over time this can cause headaches, migraines, or musculoskeletal problems.
The consistent and ongoing increase in heart rate, and the elevated levels of stress hormones and of blood pressure, can take a toll on the body. This long-term ongoing stress can increase the risk for hypertension, heart attack, or stroke.
After an extended period of stress, the body goes into the final stage of GAS, known as the exhaustion stage. At this stage, the body has depleted its energy resources by continually trying but failing to recover from the initial alarm reaction stage.
Stress Shrinks the Brain
While the overall volume of the brain tends to remain about the same, it has been found that chronic stress in otherwise healthy individuals can cause areas of the brain associated with emotions, metabolism, and memory to shrink.
An anxiety emergency or extreme panic attack may require an ER visit if the sufferer is unable to get it under control. Extreme cases of hyperventilation can lead to tachycardia, an occurrence where the heart is beating so fast that it is unable to properly pump blood throughout the body.
Anxiety disorders are the most common of mental disorders and affect nearly 30% of adults at some point in their lives. But anxiety disorders are treatable and a number of effective treatments are available. Treatment helps most people lead normal productive lives.