What Is Stress? Essay

1118 words - 4 pages

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Stress is a body's method of reacting to a challenge. According to the stressful event, the body's way to respond to stress is by sympathetic nervous system activation which results in the fight-or-flight response. In humans, stress typically describes a negative condition or a positive condition that can have an impact on a person's mental and physical well-being. Physiological or biological stress is an organism's response to a stressor such as an environmental condition or a stimulus. The term "stress" had not been used before the 1920s. It is a form of the Middle English destresse, derived via Old French from the Latin stringere, "to draw tight." The word had long been in use in physics to refer to the internal distribution of a force exerted on a material body, resulting in strain. In the 1920s and 1930s, biological and psychological circles occasionally used the term to refer to a mental strain or to a harmful environmental agent that could cause illness.
Walter Cannon used it in 1926 to refer to external factors that disrupted what he called homeostasis. Stress is an explanation of lived experiences that is absent from both lay and expert life narratives before the 1930s. Physiological stress represents a wide range of physical responses that occur as a direct effect of a stressor causing an upset in the homeostasis of the body. Upon immediate disruption of either psychological or physical equilibrium the body responds by stimulating the nervous, endocrine, and immune systems. The reaction of these systems causes a number of physical changes that have both short and long term effects on the body. 
After taking the Holms and Rahe self-assessment my results were 277 which meant that I have a moderate life crisis and that there is a 50% chance illnesses arising will be inevitable if I do not relieve some of my stressors. It stated that I could suffer headaches, diabetes, fatigue, hypertension, chest and back pain, ulcers and infectious disease. The results were right on target because I suffer from hypertension and back pain but I do not understanding the infectious disease part.
I was diagnosed with hypertension in 2005, just a year after getting married and my youngest son coming to live with us when he was 14 years old. My wife and I went from a two person household to being full time parents once again. When my son came to live with us he had issues with following rules, going to school and was acting out. We tried counseling, alternative education options until he turned 18. From 2005 until today there are many stressors that contribute to my hypertension and it is hard to see a way out of it.
My ideal situation would be the knowing that all 6 of our kids are well off, without any real big problems, seeing the grandkids when we want to see them, traveling more, and saving for our retirement.
I know that the result of my doing nothing would be that I would end up having a stroke or...

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