Managing Stress

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Noise pollution is so much a part of our daily life that many of us have forgotten what peace and quiet sounds like. Wether it is in the workplace caused by machinery or constant traffic depending on your job. Maybe even at home where the sound of family talking, yelling, crying or playing loud music, the problem with noise is that it is usually unavoidable. Frequent exposure to noise pollution can cause the body to produce more adrenaline and cortisol due to stress.

These hormones are those produced when the body shifts into fight or flight mode, and they can raise the body’s heart rate as well as a person’s blood pressure. The result over time can be negative, as the body triggers this reaction again and again, leading to the loss of blood vessels and later an increased risk of suffering heart complications. Conditions triggered as a result of the stress from noise pollution causes can include ulcers and migraines as well. Noise can also disrupt the fabric of your life by affecting such things as;

Disrupting your sleeping pattern – Noise can easily disrupt peoples sleeping patterns, wether it’s the sound of neighbours, an ambulance or the constant sounds of busy city life, lack of sleep due to noise is very common and can effect your life in many ways. Leads to irritability to those around you – Lack of sleep and constant noises normally lead to people becoming easily irritable, which in turn will make you less patient and sometimes cause you to get frustrated and angry towards the people around you.

Becoming obsessed with the noise – Becoming obsessed with noise can cause a lot of stress, it may be just the simple sound of hearing the doorbell ring while your actually sitting at your desk doing work, but all in all obsession with noise can become quite serious and lead people to become very paranoid about the things they hear and can lead them to constantly doubt themselves. May lose Concentration – Constant noise and lack of sleep will often cause people to lose concentration and be distracted easily; this leaves you prone to falling behind in your work and becoming less productive, which leads to stress.

May lead to isolation – Excessive noise in your life can cause you become isolated, wether it be due to lack of socialising because you are far to tired from your lack of sleep or wether its because you just cant handle the thought of leaving the house because you cant handle the noise outside, noise can lead people to becoming very prone to isolation. Mood and work performance – All of these things can be affected by noise, your mood can change instantly due to lack of sleep because of noise, and your work performance can deteriorate due to having no motivation and no concentration, leading you to possibly getting fired causing more stress.

Caring for a chronically ill family member – External stress factor People, who devote themselves to the care of chronically ill family members by focusing all their time on an individual, are very prone to burn out. The demands of care giving can be overwhelming, especially if you feel you have little control over the situation or that you’re in over your head. If you let the stress of caring progress to burnout, it can damage both your physical and mental health. There are many factors that affect a carer and cause them to feel stressed, things such as;

Financial Pressures – Caring can come at great cost to carers. Many are forced to give up work to care, at the same time as they are faced with the considerable additional costs of disability. This means that, alongside the personal costs of ill-health, for many families, disability and caring pushes them into debt and hardship. No chance to meet others – Once you start caring for a chronically ill family member everything else takes a backseat, things such as friendships, hobbies and work all get pushed to the back of your mind.

You may quit your job in order to look after your family member full time or lose touch with your friends because your entire time is taken up looking after the family member, this may eventually lead to the carer becoming stressed with the fact that they no longer have a life of their own therefore becoming isolated. No time for yourself – Without an occasional break from caring, carers may become exhausted or unwell. If you live with the person you care for, you might feel that there’s no time for yourself.

Many carers experience a loss of identity because of the overwhelming effect of their caring role. Physically, mentally, emotionally exhausting – Caring for another person who is chronically ill is emotionally and physically exhausting. It can lead to you becoming frustrated, scared and overwhelmed; all these things affect how you live your life and how you look after yourself. Sometimes carers can stop taking care of themselves and therefore becoming ill which leads to them becoming unable to care for their family member which ends up causing more stress.

These factors can cause the carer to feel hopeless and in doing so they may feel depressed, which can cause them to turn to alcohol or drugs to deal with their situation and make them feel like they can escape. In taking these substances and dealing with these problems, it can make them forget to care for themselves and lead to an illness of their own, therefore it is vitally important for carers to seek help themselves to lessen the burden of constant caring. Financial problems – External stress factor Financial stress is a sadly a widespread experience in modern day life.

This is pretty significant because financial stress is linked to health problems like depression and sleep problems. With the rising cost of gas and food, the mortgage crisis, and the new bank troubles we’re seeing, many Americans are feeling the crunch of financial stress. Anxiety over money can negatively affect health in several ways: Unhealthy Coping Behaviours: People experiencing financial stress can be more likely to numb their anxiety by drinking, smoking, overeating and practicing other unhealthy coping behaviours.

This in turn leads to more stress. Less Money for Self-Care: With less money in the budget, people who are already under financial stress tend to cut corners in areas like health care to pay for basic necessities like food. Small problems can go unchecked and turn into larger problems. This also leads to more stress. Lost Sleep: When under financial stress, people often experience trouble sleeping, which can add up to a sleep deficit, impairing immune functioning and cognitive abilities, causing additional moodiness, and more.

Unhealthy Emotions: debt can cause unhealthy emotions that can take a toll on health. People can experience anxiety, frustration and a sense of hopelessness as the debt piles up and increasing amounts of money are needed just to pay the interest. This causes additional stresses, which added with the stress from poor coping and self-neglect to become an uncontrollable amount of stress. Isolation: Money problems can stop people from socially mixing with others such as friends, colleagues and relatives, due to the fact the person may not have enough money to go out and socialize.

Being unable to socialize with others can lead to depression due to the fact you may feel embarrassed and disappointed in yourself due to the lack of money. Reasons for financial troubles Living beyond your means: Overspending is the most common reason why people encounter financial difficulty. The reasons why people tend to live beyond their means may be numerous, complex and will vary from one individual to another. Borrowing money: Borrowing money in today’s environment is too easy, all it takes is a quick online application form and you have a credit card.

This may seem like the best option when struggling for money but in the end it only leads to future debt and more stress. Lack of financial education: Personal money management in not taught in our education system. Therefore, many people are not educated about personal finances and cannot answer basic questions such as the difference between investing money in stocks and a savings account, or whether every person has a right to see their own credit report.

Distinguishing needs from wants: Before credit cards were invented, consumers could only purchase what they could afford to pay and had to prioritize their purchases by distinguishing “needs” from “wants”. With access to credit, consumers can now purchase pretty much anything their credit limit will allow them, so long as they can make their minimum payments. Lack of Income: Families that fall below basic family budget levels often lack the income needed to support a safe and decent living standard.

Therefore, such families supplement their income by using credit to purchase basic necessities such as food, clothing and shelter. Eventually, debt accumulates to such a level that families cannot afford to make minimum payments against their debt and may have to file bankruptcy. Job Loss or Illness: A common reason for financial hardship is an unexpected job loss or the inability to work due to a prolonged period of illness or disability. People today are saving less, and often have no savings to draw upon during the period of unemployment or illness.

The resultant effect is a significant reduction in income such that living expenses cannot be maintained without going into debt. If the non-working period is prolonged, the debt may have accumulated to such a level that debt payments can no longer be maintained, even after finding employment. Unrealistic expectations or beliefs – Internal stress factor A common source of stress is unrealistic expectations. People often become upset about something, not because it is stressful, but because it does not concur with what they expected.

This can affect our personal relationships, work, and health. Often our ideas about how life should be do not match reality. We may idealize life. Unrealistic attitudes promote unnecessary disappointment, and resentment when life doesn’t doesn’t happen the way we want. Unrealistic expectations can have a negative effect on your social life as you may find yourself isolated by the fact that you expect too much of yourself and are expected to match up to others expectations of how you should be.

Personal life may also be tough due to having an unrealistic view of how you should be living your life, in regards to how much money you should have or how happy you think you should be. Unrealistic expectations are common in the workplace, especially during the time of corporate reorganizations due to the current economic crisis, which sometimes puts unhealthy and unreasonable pressures on the employee; this can be a massive source of stress and trouble.

Increased workload, extremely long work hours and intense pressure to perform at peak levels all the time for the same pay, can actually leave an employee’s physically and emotionally drained. Unrealistic expectations can come from within or from others high expectations of you; these goals that are set far too high can leave you feeling dissatisfied and frustrated when they are not achieved, the constant frustration and the feeling of failure can lead you to using alcohol or drugs as an escape.

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