People in the world today, no matter what age, are subject to a great amount of stress. Stress-related mental health problems are now routinely diagnosed in children as young as 12, though the most common age for the onset of symptoms is around 20 years. These problems can persist throughout a person’s whole lifetime, with bad episodes being triggered by especially high stress situations. Though it is probably true that ignorance of anxiety disorders is probably what prevented so many diagnoses from occurring in the past, we might also speculate that society is undergoing radical changes which could heighten stress or remove necessary support structures – for example; increases in divorce, the dismantling of traditional gender roles, and the provision of free access to information.
Are You Experiencing Stress at Work?
Some job roles are inevitably stressful, and the people who choose to have a career in these areas are aware of this before they begin. Doctors, firefighters, police officers and armed forces personnel know that they face life-or-death situations on a daily basis. However, it might still be the case that some of these individuals begin suffering from stress-related illnesses. Those less suited to these careers might have a more pedestrian job in an office or vocational field, but this doesn’t mean that they are not exposed to stress at work. The pressure of impending deadlines or bullying in the workplace can lead to anxiety.
Symptoms of Anxiety Disorders
There are several types of anxiety disorder. with two main ones being heavily affected by stress. Generalized Anxiety Disorder, or GAD, is comparatively mild, though it could still interfere with everyday life. GAD is characterized by excessive worrying about any subject, usually accompanied by physical disturbances such as an inability to sleep, restlessness, loss of appetite or difficulty concentrating. GAD can get in the way of normal life as the sufferer is likely to be irritable, tired and unable to carry out tasks to the best of their ability.
The other main type of anxiety disorder is known as Panic Disorder. This description is attached to those who suffer two or more sudden panic attacks for no apparent reason, which causes them to adjust their lifestyle in order to prevent the onset of any more attacks. This may manifest as agoraphobia, where sufferers avoid stressful situations or crowded places. In extreme cases, the patient may feel unable to leave their home. Symptoms of panic attacks include a feeling of extreme fear, chest pain, rapid heartbeat, nausea, and derealization.
Preventing Stress-Related Illness
There are a whole range of ways to prevent stress from affecting your life. Popular methods include the performance of exercise, yoga, or breathing practices. Alcohol and certain other drugs, including nicotine, can contribute to stress, so cutting down might have a beneficial effect. Any activity which allows you to let go of your worries, or which makes you feel as though you have vented aggression or sadness, will help your body to cope with the stress that builds up during your life.
John Galt is a blogger and passionate advocate for mental health care. He is writing on behalf of a personalised medical alert jewellery business.