Stress has the power to affect physical and mental health, which is why I believe that ridding oneself of stress is important and beneficial. I argue that when dealing with stress, maintaining a positive attitude and outlook on life, using natural methods to cope with stress, and self reliance prove more beneficial than relying on drugs. Although there have been leading drugs that deal with stress symptoms, some studies argue for more natural ways to cope with stress emphasizing different forms of meditation.
Dealing with and managing stress could be done with a little more self-reliance and a little less drugs. Stress can produce negative physical effects on an individual. According to Mayo Clinic, the American Psychological Association reported some of these physiological effects which include headaches, muscle tensions, sleep problems, and an upset stomach (Mayo Clinic staff. Stress can also lead to excessive release of hydrochloric acid, which is released in the stomach, thereby causing ulcers; if left unrecognized and unmediated, stress may also lead to heart disease.
The Everything Psychology Book discusses how research done by the American Heart Association links heart disease risk factors to individuals who display a Type-A behavior (168). Such behavior is displayed through aggressiveness and constant competitiveness by individuals who perceive relaxing as a challenge. In addition to physiological effects, stress may affect mental health through triggering cognitive and/or negative emotional reactions. Based on The Everything Psychology Book, some of these reactions include panic, anxiety, anger, depression, and general adjustment disorders (169).
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Some moon examples of anxiety, anger, and depression reactions are fear, feelings of urgency, frustration, and a disruption in eating and sleeping schedules. Mayo Clinic research suggests that some beneficial ways to deal with stress symptoms incorporate meditation techniques and participation in fitness programs such as yoga (Mayo Clinic staff. A women’s health publication also emphasizes stress coping methods such as relaxing, developing a positive attitude, and taking care of one’s body (Orca, “Stress and your health fact sheet”).
Despite there being a plethora of says in which one may naturally and self-reliantly address his/her stress symptoms, few studies commend the use of drugs to help alleviate these symptoms. Medicine Plus proposes Passionflower medication, which is made from a plant, to alleviate some of the symptoms of stress. According to Medicine, Passionflower is used for “sleep problems (insomnia), gastrointestinal (GIG) upset related to anxiety or nervousness, [and] generalized anxiety disorder (GAD)… ” (“Passionflower: Medicine Stress research paper By Kohl blood pressure which are both effects of severe stress.
Medicine shows that based on the Natural Medicines Comprehensive Database, Passionflower proved effective in reducing some symptoms of anxiety and of relieving some symptoms of adjustment disorders. However, Medicine also incorporates that the same drug proved to elicit negative side effects such as inflammation in blood vessels, dizziness, increased heart rate, and random muscle coordination. Additionally, there have been other drugs that were proposed to alleviate symptoms of bipolar disorder, which can be an effect of severe stress, such as Valparaiso acid.
Medicine commends that these types of drugs are also used to treat seizures and prevent migraine headaches. However, studies show that Valparaiso acid may lead to serious side effects that include, but are not limited to, abnormal bleeding or bruising, Joints weakening, depression, and suicidal thoughts (“Valparaiso Acid: Midlines Drug Information”). Although these drugs have proven some degree of effectiveness, their serious side effects should serve as incentive to turn to natural coping mechanisms against stress instead such as meditating and developing a positive new attitude.
Women’s health publication proposes becoming a problem solver where individuals can determine their current problems and plan solutions for them. As for problems that are beyond one’s control, individuals can face these with a development of a positive attitude. Based on the Everything Psychology Book, the problem-solving approach is “the most realistic approach to coping with stress and produces the most positive results” (174). The ability to solve problems not only fights off stress, it builds up confidence, and it allows an individual to claim control on his/her situation.
The health publication also proposes getting organized, and setting limits for oneself. During the day, an individual should not fear turning down requests that require his/her time and energy if enough was already being put to use. In addition to organization, relaxation and care for one’s body are other natural methods of coping with stress. Some relaxation techniques include meditation and fitness programs such as yoga and ATA Chi. The online health Journal claims that, “… Chi is considered a life force that flows through the body meridians or passageways… Reese and tension are believed to close the meridians.. ,” which certifies that ATA Chi has the power to “keep the meridians open, allowing chi to maintain balance throughout the body” (McKinley, “Taking Time to Practice ATA Chi”). The health Journal also suggests exercises such as yoga, and hydration to ease muscle tension for males to overcome and relieve their stresses; the Journal emphasizes on the “quality and type of exercise” (Kowalski, “A Guy’s Guide to 2012 Resolutions”). Stress can be caused by extreme conditions and by trivial matters.
The concept of stress is universal and is not unique to a specific set of people. Therefore, acknowledging stress symptoms and working to treat them is important. The help guide argues that, “the simple realization that [one is] in control of [his/her] life is the foundation of stress management,” (Smith, “Stress Management”) which certifies the problem solving approach to dealing with stress. Although there are medications and drugs that could help treat some of these symptoms, the majority of researches and studies point to more natural ways to cope.
My own solution to fighting off stress is to develop positive attitudes where even a stressful situation could be turned to one’s benefit, to take up natural coping avoid using drugs that could cause harmful side effects. The health guide provides six coping techniques that help alleviate stress which parallel my solution: one can avoid unnecessary stress, alter the situation, adapt to stresses, accept the things that one cannot change, make time to relax, and adopt a healthy lifestyle (Smith, “Stress Management”). In the end, these techniques allow for more self-reliance and less dependence on drugs.