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Breathe: your super busy life can be harmful

Wednesday 20 February 2019 - forpatient


We have an unbridled pace of life. Every time we do more things: work, domestic activities, taking care of children/grandchildren, other social activities, etc. But the time to do them does not increase. The infinite amount of small commitments we take all over the day can lead us to a daily stress situation.
The current pace of life we take facilitates the appearance of stress: the uncomfortable feeling of not having enough time to do everything we have to do. In small doses, stress has advantages: it helps us to be more active. But when it increases in time and intensity it can have negative consequences on health. We talk about daily stress and how we can handle it.
The definition of stress is not consensual. But it can be understood as the sense of overload by which we perceive that the demand for activity to which we must respond exceeds our capacity (that is, we have to do more things than we can).
Stress is present in every moment of our lives because it is a natural response of our body. Some of the causes of stress can be happy or sad events, but the key to not affecting our health is to avoid exaggerations.

What happens when daily stress lasts too long or is very intense?

In small doses, daily stress has positive effects: it makes us more awake and focused and allows us to do more things than we would without stress. But when the stress is too intense or lengthens over time, it creates discomfort and, according to some studies, affects the immune system. Thus, we are more vulnerable to some infectious diseases. In addition, stress can accumulate and produce a long-term negative effect on mental health.
Daily stress can accumulate and produce a long-term negative effect on mental health, as evidenced by research conducted by the University of California in Irvine (United States) and published in the online 'Psychological ' magazine Science'. This work shows that the stress that people suffer every day can "take their toll" on their cognitive health in the future. In particular, it is the negative emotional responses to everyday annoyances that have a cumulative effect.
For the time being, studies that show the relationship between daily stress and health indicate that it can affect the level of symptoms of anxiety, depression and other psychological problems, general somatic and psychological complaints, problems in the cardiovascular, respiratory, gastrointestinal systems, musculoskeletal, rheumatoid arthritis, migraines, infectious diseases, among others.
It could be said that minor events affect all dimensions of health, which could lead to a deterioration in the quality of life progressively.

How can we reduce stress?

With all this, can we do something to avoid that it is daily stress overflows us? Of course!
Adjust activities to reality. Do not burden yourself with more work that can be done. Sometimes this includes having assertiveness and learn to say "No" to the proposals that are received.
Make small breaks throughout the day. They will help us stay focused.
Before using mobile applications for productivity, make sure they are a solution instead of bothering us. And use only one.
Write your tasks on a piece of paper in order of priority: first the urgent ones, then the important ones and, finally, the ones that can wait. Finish an activity before starting another.
Practice deep breathing exercises and slow, and relaxation. With 5 minutes is enough.
Try to spend time with friends or family.  Laughing also helps a lot to fight stress.
Exercise: a healthy way to combat daily stress is doing sports. It is not only about raising the pulsations but doing so in a manner consistent with our level of movement. At this time no stress is generated because the activation produced has a natural outlet, the work of our muscles.
Eat healthily: junk food is one of the worst ways to combat daily stress. If you have an appetite, take fruit and vegetables. A natural and balanced diet with five well-distributed daily meals is an open secret that brings well-being.
Sleep well: remember that a good rest needs time. If we sleep well, our mind is clearer and more alert to face daily challenges.
Meditation: this relaxation technique, like other similar ones, is very useful to lower the level of stress. It is based on deep and conscious breathing, ideal to release tension.
Do not hesitate to ask for professional help if nothing of this is enough for your stress level.

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