Psychology and Psychiatry

Chronic stress

Chronic stress is the main problem of the 21st century. Stress is a defense mechanism that is activated during adverse transformations of the environment. According to statistical information, one fourth of the working-age population of the planet suffers from this scourge, earning it directly at the workplace. Psychologists call this phenomenon burnout syndrome. Chronic stress often develops gradually, the state is injected for months, often even for years. When settling for a new job, an individual, as a rule, deals with it with interest and pleasure. He puts maximum effort in order to achieve serious results. But over time, routine, and the lack of novelty, displace the feeling of freshness, as a result of which the forces run out, and the duties are borne.

Causes of Chronic Stress

The constant attribute of human existence is chronic nervous stress, which has plagued people since the beginning of their existence on the planet. Modern realities of human life are closely interrelated with the need to act swiftly, to run somewhere, to constantly do something, to be constantly in motion, to receive a huge amount of information every day, to make quick decisions. All this is considered to be potential stressors - factors that provoke the onset of a stressful state.

Stress is, above all, a specific reaction of the human body to a variety of irritants. It manifests itself as a combination of non-specific adaptive responses to the influence of various adverse factors.

The root cause provoking the onset of a chronic stressful state is considered to be long-lasting traumatic conditions, generating negative emotional response, not allowing you to get proper rest, to distract from problems that have piled in, to escape from worries. It activates the emotional stress that causes stress, first of all, the unfavorable microclimate in the working environment, family, frequent confrontations with relatives, employees or partners. Chronic emotional stress is also observed as a result of doing monotonous work every day that does not lead to personal development, depriving oneself of proper rest, workaholism, lack of communication. These factors give rise to emotional burnout.

The variety of symptoms of the disease under consideration and its severity is due to the personality traits of the individual's character. Pessimism, the predominance of self-criticism and the lack of a normal attitude to external criticism, laziness, the inability to quickly switch from one variation of activity to another - often become factors provoking the onset of the state in question. Multiple observations indicate that psychasthenics often suffer from other individuals from a chronic stress state.

It happens that the predisposition to the occurrence of stress laid genetically. Such people often lack the minimum impact of a stressor in order to unbalance.

To bypass the appearance or effects of stressors that negatively affect the body is quite difficult. Much easier to transform your own reaction. The miraculous recipe, which has a truly magical effect on mental equilibrium, includes one drop of humor, a pinch of sarcasm, a sniff of indifference, thoroughly mixed with systematic rest, physical exertion and healthy sleep. Sometimes situations are much stronger than the individual, so the above recipe does not even help, then you should just reconcile and endure.

There are people who are unable to endure even short-term moderate mental, psychological or physical exertion, due to the characteristics of their own nature. Therefore, they are more often subject to chronic stress.

In addition to these factors, the development of the violation in question is also influenced by various somatic ailments, for example, influenza.

Symptoms of chronic stress

According to the theory of the physiologist, G. Selye analyzed the deviation for its formation goes through several stages. Debuting with anxiety reaction. Individuals attend annoying thoughts. A person thinks that something is already developing wrong in his life, or something bad will happen, that nobody understands him, does not reckon with his position.

People may feel discomfort due to exposure to external conditions (heat, noise) or feel different algii, easily eliminated by drugs, but give rise to fear. These manifestations are due to the type of stressor. At the initial stage, the sympathetic nervous system enters an excited state, the hypothalamus acts on the pituitary gland, which, in turn, produces the hormone ACTH. In this case, the adrenal glands produce corticosteroids, which increase the body's readiness to confront stressors.

Anxiety reaction is replaced by resistance, which G. Selye conditionally called the stage of struggle and flight.

At the next stage, exhaustion occurs, which, as a rule, occurs precisely during chronic stress, when negative factors affect the individual too long, or there is a frequent change from one stressor to another. At this stage, the potential and resources of the body are rapidly reduced.

The following are signs indicating the presence of a chronic stress state, namely:

- permanently present physical and mental fatigue, even short-term vacation is unable to eliminate fatigue;

- the emergence of isolation, the individual does not get pleasure from communication with colleagues, discontent begins to bear a steady reluctance, so the number of people whom the individual wants to see, is rapidly decreasing;

- there is always discontent with oneself, doubts, there is no self-confidence, a sense of hopelessness is pursuing the person.

Chronic nervous stress is dangerous manifestations of symptoms on the physical level, moral and behavioral. There are problems in health, intestinal disorders, there is a steady physical fatigue, insomnia, headaches appear. There are skin problems, eels appear. Also lost interest in intimate life. You may be addicted to psychotropic or alcohol.

In the realm of the senses, a steady despondency is observed, periodically interrupted by gratuitous irritation. The individual feels himself devastated and powerless, apathy, anxiety, and grief are piling up. A person becomes dissatisfied with his own field of activity and his role in the professional environment.

In addition, there are behavioral changes. The subject is difficult to concentrate, there are cognitive impairments, difficulties with humor, bitterness towards employees and superiors. There is a desire to run away from reality, to hide from the immediate problems.

Thus, the symptoms of the described violation include: anxiety, anxiety, constant fatigue, irritability, disorders related to the vegetative system.

Manifestations of a stressful state of a chronic nature are as follows:

- excessive susceptibility to stressors, even the slightest shock often leads an individual out of balance, able to cause panic or aggression;

- excessive tearfulness, touchiness, it is easy to injure a person;

- high level of anxiety;

- inability to concentrate, memory impairment, decrease in mental activity;

- getting stuck in a traumatic problem;

- heightened sensitivity to noise, loud sounds, bright light;

- sleep quality disorder, difficulty falling asleep, sleep is characterized by restlessness;

- hyperplasticity, palpitations, pressure jumps, dyspeptic disorders.

The stressful state of a chronic nature is extremely negative, while short-term stress can be positive. Chronic stress is called distress in science. It is subdivided into biological, psychological, and chronic emotional stress.

The first variation of stress is a set of body reactions that originate from adverse environmental effects, which are always a real life-threatening event (for example, injuries, weather). Selye called the biological type of stress "salt of life", because salt is always good in moderation.

The biological stress of a chronic course is based on an ailment that lasts a long period. It may also occur due to the forced existence in unhealthy climate conditions. Often the provoking factor is prolonged physical exertion, occurring against the background of sustained nervous overstrain (aspirations to prove something to everyone, to achieve the unattainable).

Here, in addition to the physical, the individual develops chronic fatigue. The stress state in the described case gives rise to many somatic troubles - diseases of the digestive tract, dermis, myocardium, vascular system.

The psychological stress of a chronic course differs from other variations in its “launching” not only as a result of past traumatic events or situations occurring, but also in incidents that, according to the individual, can only occur which he fears. Another feature of this variation of stress is the ability of an individual to assess the potential of their own capabilities in eliminating an unfavorable situation. It does not matter how difficult the described type of chronic stress is, because it does not contribute to the appearance of obvious disturbances in the functioning of the organism and does not threaten the existence of a person.

The causes of psychological stress are hidden solely in social relationships or in the thoughts of individuals. We can single out the following factors causing this variation of stress: the memory of past failures, our own life guidelines, the motivation of actions (“winding up” ourselves in order to get something at the highest level), the uncertainty of circumstances and a long wait.

The occurrence of the type of stress is primarily due to personal characteristics, the nature of the individual and his temperament.

Chronic emotional stress, according to research conducted by physiologists, affects the increase in mortality. In the process of evolutionary development in human subjects, emotions have arisen, which are a component of human survival. The behavioral response of individuals is primarily focused on the expression of joyful emotions. Today, as a result of the scientific and technological revolution, there is an imbalance in the mental state of people, which creates negative reactions that have a detrimental effect on physiological processes and health. For example, anger destroys the liver tissue, anxiety causes spleen dysfunction, sadness affects the kidneys, envy causes abnormalities in the performance of the myocardium. The factors provoking the described type of stress are often referred to as: inability to translate one's own desires, expanding areas of communicative interaction in society, lack of time, inexhaustible avalanche of unnecessary information, urbanization, violation of biorhythms, increased emotional overload in the professional sphere.

In addition to the above, the majority of individuals invariably experience inside past situations where they could not avoid failures or defeats. Often, this variation of stress is accompanied by depressive moods. A person becomes indifferent to the events taking place, surrounding and his own person. Being for him loses value.

How to remove chronic stress

Chronic stress treatment can be a difficult and lengthy process. The work of getting rid of the manifestations of the violation in question is primarily aimed at changing one’s own consciousness, behavioral response and lifestyle.

Before the start of correctional effects, in order to eliminate serious violations caused by prolonged stress, it is recommended to be examined first.

There are several methods focused on eliminating the symptoms of chronic stress, which are best practiced in combination, namely, psychotherapeutic correction, auto-training, yoga, aroma and phytotherapy, therapeutic exercises, and medication effects.

In addition, creativity plays a significant role, allowing the individual to distract and mobilize the resources of the body.

It is possible to eliminate some phenomena of stress of the chronic course without leaving the usual place of residence by means of folk methods.

The tremendous effect, which allows to relieve excessive tension and calm the numbed "nerves", has hot foot baths just before bedtime. They eliminate fatigue, contribute to the speedy fall asleep and deep sound sleep. Baths for the whole body with the addition of lavender oil, infusions of fir or pine, calendula flowers, oregano, mint leaves also perfectly relax, improve sleep, eliminate psycho-emotional overstrain.

If there are problems with falling asleep, it is recommended to breathe valerian tincture directly or go to Morpheus demesne or smear the temporal region with lavender oil.

The use of components of plant origin is considered a reliable way of self-relieving of overvoltage. However, choose herbs, aromatic oils should be carefully, so as not to provoke an allergic reaction. Morning tea with the addition of chamomile, lemon balm and mint contributes to a calmer response to external stimuli in the daytime. Oregano will help eliminate insomnia, and St. John's wort will relieve a depressive mood.

With prolonged deep stress, professional psychocorrectional exposure is indispensable. Psychotherapeutic work includes the following directions: searching for factors that gave rise to the state in question, analyzing these factors, diagnosing the type of response to external stimuli, developing stress tolerance.

Treatment of chronic stress involves the use of the following techniques: gestalt therapy, hypotechnologist, cognitive behavioral psychotherapy.

The effects of this condition are eliminated with the help of pharmacopoeial agents. It is recommended to use sedatives, vitamin complexes and minerals. From sedatives it is better to give preference to drugs of plant origin. They should be used with an increase in heart rate, anxiety, panic attacks, fear. The use of drugs that relieve insomnia, also requires caution, because some funds cause addiction.

An individual who correctly relates to the surrounding reality and leads a healthy existence does not face prolonged stress.

The following recommendations will help to avoid psycho-emotional overstrain:

- Compliance with the schedule (wake up and retreat into the possession of Morpheus, you should eat at the same time daily);

- in everyday life, physical activity must necessarily be present (daily loads of moderate nature mobilize the resources of the whole organism, prevent the development of stagnant processes);

- food should be balanced, enriched with vitamins, it is recommended to refrain from the consumption of alcohol-containing substances;

- it is recommended to devote time to creativity;

- Be sure to communicate with relatives, friends.

Consequences of chronic stress

The human body due to long-term exposure to stressors loses the ability to quickly recover, as a result of which vital resources flow from it.

This condition causes depression of the psyche and impaired functioning of the immune system, as a result of which the body becomes unprotected against exposure to infections from the outside, which leads to frequent illnesses.

Due to protracted stressful conditions, the digestive system suffers: appetite increases or disappears, epigastric severity appears, there is a disorder in the stool (constipation, diarrhea, or a combination of them).

The aging process is also accelerated: the number of grayed hair, wrinkles on the facial area and neck appear or increases, the elasticity of the dermis decreases, acne appears, skin peeling, deterioration of the nail plates, hair loss are observed.

To exist in society becomes incredibly difficult. The individual can not concentrate, when the circumstances require, he cannot, there is confusion in his thoughts, there are difficulties in resolving problem situations. Increases human vulnerability. При возникновении неожиданных неприятностей либо преград, возможно ухудшение состояния, выражаемое в нервным срыве, появлении суицидальных мыслей.

Prolonged exposure to stressors and their effects causes the development of the following pathologies:

- Myocardial and vascular system diseases (stroke, arterial hypertension, coronary disease);

- failures in the functioning of the nervous system (neurosis-like states, migraine);

- diseases of the digestive tract (ulcer);

- endocrine pathologies (diabetes mellitus);

- musculoskeletal disorders (arthritis);

- skin problems (psoriasis, eczema);

- allergic reactions and manifestations (urticaria, asthma, dermatitis);

- abnormalities in the functioning of the reproductive system (menstrual disorders, decreased libido).