How to deal with stress?

By Ashike Limbachia

How to deal with stress?

What is stress?

Stress is a feeling of emotional or physical tension. Therefore, stress is your body’s reaction to a challenge or demand, which can often be overwhelming to deal with.

Generally, when we feel stressed, a range of hormones are released from our nervous system, these include adrenaline and cortisol. This can cause adverse effect, such as high blood pressure, heart pounding faster, short snappy intakes or breath and senses becoming more prominent.

Everyone will experience stress at some point in their lives, whether they’re young or an adult, this can be due to work, school, or personal difficulties and traumas. But how we react and cope with the stress is the most important factor.

Below we have placed different methods to help you deal with stress;

Physical activity

Using exercise to combat stress has shown to be highly effective according to numerous studies. In addition to relieving stress, exercise can also improve your mood significantly by pumping up your endorphins significantly. Exercise helps production of your brains feel good neurotransmitters, better known as endorphins.

So, dust off your running trainers, get your training gear on and get a big bottle of h20 ready to hit that 5k run in the sunshine!

Healthy diet

This might sound obvious, but a healthy diet can play an instrumental role in relieving stress and even dealing with it. A healthy diet supports your immune system and the repair of damaged cells. It also provides additional energy needed to cope with the day-to-day stresses.

Research shows that foods high in polyunsaturated fats including omega-3 fat rich foods and vegetables may help regulate cortisol levels. These include:

  • Anchovy

  • Salmon

  • Tuna

  • Halibut

  • Avocado

  • Kale

  • Sweet potato

  • Bananas

  • Dark Chocolate

Although these foods may reduce stress, be considerate how much you are consuming in one sitting. We wouldn't recommend having a big dark chocolate bar for your dinner, it is still essential to keep a balanced diet!

Spend time with loved ones

Being stressed and anxious can often be a dark and lonely place. Having social support from friends and family can often help you get through stressful times. This also helps you look at the cause of your stress in a more rational way, as family and friends can often take a step back and evaluate the overall situation.

It may be worth considering joining a sports club, social group or even therapy to speak about your issues or simply to get away from them. You will be surprised how much talking about your issues can often take a load of your chest. Being involved and part of a team will help bring a welcomed break to the stress you have going on in your life, along with help you build fresh relationships in your life.

Practice self-care

Many people often neglect themselves in moments of stress or anxiety. But setting time for yourself is important for a healthy lifestyle, and to reduce stress. We have placed our favourite methods of self-care below:

  • Going for a walk

  • Reading a book

  • Exercising

  • Practising yoga (it’s harder than you think!)

  • Going for a spa/ massage

  • Preparing a healthy meal

  • Reflecting your daily events in a diary

  • Setting affirmations at the start of each day

Reduce Caffeine Intake

We have all been guilty of guzzling coffee and energy drinks in moments of stress in order to complete a deadline, or to get through a busy day! However, this isn’t the best thing to do especially if you are stressed or anxious. Caffeine is a chemical found in energy drinks, tea, coffee and chocolate that stimulates your nervous system. Over-consumption can make you feel overanxious to the point you feel stressed.

In addition, having too much caffeine can also contribute to worse sleep, which often leads to people consuming more caffeine in the morning – therefore creating a vicious cycle that people struggle to come out of. If you do need caffeine for a little boost when you feel tired by all means go for it – but try and be wise what time you are consuming it and what time you are.

If you are a healthcare assistant or a nurse of any grade who needs advice on dealing with stress, feel free to get in touch with our team today on 0333-121-1000 or visit our contact page.

At MedGen, we are here for you.

Share this article