Managing Stress

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Managing Stress

Chronic stress takes its toll on our bodies and minds. The more stress we have at any one time, the higher the likelihood we will suffer from a stress-related illness. Stressors are with us day in and day out, producing symptoms ranging from minor emotional anxiety and muscle tension in the neck and shoulders to high blood pressure, chest pain or shortness of breath.

There is growing evidence that prolonged exposure to stressors without effective stress management can contribute to chronic diseases such as depression, hypertension, heart disease, and peptic ulcers.

You can tell if stress is affecting your health by taking the following “stress test.” To learn the level of stress in your life, circle the value at the right of each of the following events if it has occurred within the past 12 months. Then add up all the circled values. The higher the total score, the greater the role that stress plays in your life and the higher likelihood that it is compromising your health. If your total score is more than 150, it would be smart to find ways to reduce or manage stress in your daily life. We are always here to help you.

Event Value
Death Of Spouse 100
Divorce 73
Marital Separation 65
Jail Term 63
Death of Close Family Member 63
Personal Injury or Illness 53
Marriage 50
Fired from Job 47
Marital Reconciliation 45
Retirement 45
Change in Family Member’s Health 44
Pregnancy 40
Sexual Difficulties 39
Addition to Family 39
Business Readjustment 39
Change In Financial Status 38
Death Of Close Friend 37
Career Change 36
Change in Number of Marital Arguments 35
Mortgage or Loan Over $10,000 31
Foreclosure of Mortgage or Loan 30
Change in Work Responsibilities 29
Son or Daughter Leaving Home 29
Trouble with In-Laws 29
Outstanding Personal Achievement 28
Spouse Begins or Ceases Working 26
Starting or Finishing School 26
Change in Living Conditions 25
Revision of Personal Habits 24
Trouble with Boss 23
Change in Work Hours, Conditions 20
Change in Residence 20
Change in Schools 20
Change in Recreational Habits 1 19
Change in Church Activities 19
Change in Social Activities 18
Mortgage or Loan Under $10,000 17
Change in Sleeping Habits 16
Change in Number of Family Gatherings 15
Change in Eating Habits 15
Vacation 13
Christmas Season 12
Minor Violation of The Law 11

Contact Dr. Linda at 773-385-9432 for more tips on healthy snacking.


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