Part 3

PHYSICAL SYMPTOMS OF STRESS

Tension

Muscle spasm

Tight chest muscles

HeadachesSickness/nausea

Feel hot/cold

Dry mouthButterflies

Anxieties

ExhaustionIncreased pulse rate

Increased blood pressure

Increased painAnger

Reduced ability to deal with pain

EMOTIONAL EFFECTS OF STRESS

Fed up

Depressed

Decreased activity levelsEat more

Stop eattingIncreased alcohol intake

Increased drug use

Increased smoking

Seek more help from doctors

Negative thoughts

Minor stresses become major issuesCan be external or self generated

COPING WITH STRESS

Identify the stressors

Prepare to make alterations in your life

List all possible solutions

Consider eliminating each stressor in turn

If you cannot eliminate the stress - change your reaction to it

Take responsibility for the change

Adopt less demanding standards

Do not be too hard on yourselfSchedule breaks

Plan ahead

Confide in a friend/counsellor

Find a buffer

Psychologists can help to improve mood and reduce stress levels

Increase your physical activity which will help release endorphins

Set and achieve goals

Gain control over our pain

LaughRemember positive experiences

Stop destructive, anxiety provoking, tension producing negative thoughts!

RELAXATION

Allows tension to move away from every organ and muscle

Blood flows more freely

Oxygen supplies are improved

Endorphins are released

Waste products drain better

Decreases blood pressure

Promotes calmness and feeling of well-being

Enables you to take control over your pain

Can help control fears and anxieties

Needs to be guilt free

Excellent form of self management

RELAXATION TECHNIQUES

Withdraw from all distractions

Set aside at least 30 minutes

Chose a comfortable position

Use pillows as necessary

Keep warm

Use abdominal breathing

Use positive imagery and remember positive life experiences

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