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Acute Stress Vs. Chronic Stress Essay

1749 words - 7 pages

Stress once served as a lifesaving response to threatening events such as being hunted by a predator or hunting prey. The stress response helped our ancestors survive and stress provide important benefits, muscles are be primed, attention is focused, and nerves are ready for action, all of which give us the capacity to fight or to run away from danger. While stress once served a role in our ancient lives, the effects of stress in our modern world take a toll on our bodies and health. The impact of stress can be seen in all major systems of the body, while it may be impossible to avoid stress, there are steps people can take to reduce the negative impacts of stress.
What is stress? The interpretation of stress has changed overtime. Was once a lifesaving condition, where your body would pump adrenaline and glucocorticoids in your body to stimulate and increase the rate at which they function so that you may fight your way out a situation and escape. Instead, now people deal with negative physical and psychological symptoms from excessive amounts of stress, and it increases as you experience social and psychological tumult throughout your life.

Stress Role
Today stress can still play an important positive function in our lives by being beneficial, but it will have negative effects on your mind and body. Some people look for stress, such as looking for an adventure, riding a rollercoaster. This would be an example of acute stress. Acute stress is short-lived, and not last long. It can be beneficial and help create motivation. For example, when a deadline is approaching, stress may help you to focus and complete your task before the deadline. College students or students in general use this type of stress often to complete projects and cram for exams. Acute stress is a type of stress many people feel when they have accidents, have trouble at work or when students have problems in school. Once the situation is resolved, stress levels diminish, and the body returns to a relaxed state. (Eileen Bailey, 2008). A different type of stress would be long term chronic stress. You experience chronic stress as a result of a situation that has not been resolved or continued for many years prior to being solved. This might be a traumatic event that happened during someones childhood, relationship, or any stressful memories. Although resolved, the feelings surrounding the situation may not have been dealt with and chronic stress remains” (Cleaves M. Bennet, 2008). There may also be an ongoing situation, such as family abuse, dysfunctional issues at home or an ongoing problem.
Levels of stress through hierarchy
Now another way stress is experienced is by those in a system of hierarchy, such as adults who work for a living, or students at school, the higher hierarchy you have, the less stress you deal with from those above you. Those who have no power, or who are ranked low in a social hierarchy, often tend to receive more stress as they deal with...

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