EFFECTS OF STRESS ON YOUR BODY
Muscle pain, spasms
Increased blood pressure
Shortness of breath
Excessive nervous energy
Recurring feelings of
coping with life
Excess weight or decreased weight
Chronic diarrhea or constipation
Stomach or intestinal ulcers
Increased cholesterol levels
Tendency toward fainting or nausea
Increased susceptibility to infection
Increased possibility of heart disease
Inability to laugh easily or openly
Tendency toward sudden outbursts of tears or an inability to cry
WARNING SIGNS OF STRESS
Trembling, nervous tics
Inability to concentrate,
Tendency to be
Stuttering and other
Lower back pain,
neck pain, chest pain
Loss of appetite, compulsive eating
of prescribed drugs
sense of being
abnormal menstrual cycles
Feelings of weakness,
dizziness, loss of reality
CAUSES OF STRESS IN COLLEGE STUDENTS
Not enough money
A part-time or full-time job
-pressure of "Being Mature"
Too much studying and
not enough physical
Time urgency - too much
Change in eating and
Stress prone diet i.e. coffee,
tea, cola, chocolate,
not enough vitamin
C & B complex
A break-up with a boy or girlfriend,
changing to a new environment/
changes in responsibilities
A bad Roommate or not
Loneliness (especially at
Christmas, vacation times)
HOW TO HANDLE STRESS
Find a physical activity that you enjoy and make time for it. (i.e. racquetball, jogging, walking, bicycling, swimming, etc.)
Prioritize your time on paper and set reasonable goals that can be accomplished. Don't expect too much from yourself.
Don't make unnecessary appointments or unachievable deadlines. Learn to say "No".
Create opportunities when you can relax your entire mind and body.
Tense then relax the major muscle groups in the body (calves, etc.) until the entire body feels relaxed.
Avoid a stress prone diet: eat breakfast, space meals evenly throughout the day, avoid excess caffeine and sugar
(sugar depletes the body's store of vitamin B complex), take vitamin C and B complex supplements.
Use family or friends as a support group.
Recognize your own body's physical and mental signs of stress and develop your positive strategies of coping.
Learn to develop a sense of humor about yourself and your problems.
"It's not what happens to you that matters, but how you take it".
The text of this page is adapted/used with permission from a pamphlet prepared by
Patricia Fox and Carol Caudill, Senior Physical Therapy Students at the University of Oklahoma.