We’ve all felt the effects of stress from time to time. Whether you’re worried about something at work or just don’t have enough time in the day to get things done, everyone has been there. That being said, the negative health effects of stress are numerous and well documented.Each year, April is observed as Stress Awareness Month. The goal is to help people understand, identify, and reduce their stress levels.

Whatever that means to you, decreasing the amount of stress in your life is a good thing. In this article, we’ll look at some of the negative health effects of stress and how you can decrease yours.

Negative Effects of Stress

High levels of stress impact every aspect of your life. Most people think of stress as a mental issue. At a surface level, that’s true. Stress takes a mental toll, often leaving you feeling tired, burnt out, and sad.

However, the effects of stress aren’t just psychological. Studies have shown that long-term stress can harm your physical health as well. When you’re stressed, the body releases high levels of stress hormones like cortisol and epinephrine. This then leads to issues like high blood pressure, increased blood sugar, and a high heart rate. Over time, this puts you at risk for conditions like heart disease, diabetes, and stroke. Being stressed can also make your immune system less effective, leaving you at higher risk of getting sick.

Need for Stress Awareness

Many people feeling the effects of stress don’t immediately recognize it. The same is true for recognizing what’s behind those feelings.

However, it’s impossible to deal with stress if you don’t know the cause of it. Building awareness of the stressful situations around you takes time and practice. Doing so, ultimately, can help decrease your feelings of stress, leading to a healthier mind and body. Beginning to practice stress awareness is simple. When you’re stressed, make a note of how it feels. Note what’s going on around you. By recognizing these feelings and the events surrounding them, you’ll start to understand the causes of your stress. From there, you can find ways to deal with it.

Stress Coping Tips

Managing your stress is easier said than done. However, doing so is important if you want to take care of your mind and body.

One of the best things you can do to decrease stress is to practice self-care. This can take many forms. Ultimately, it means purposefully doing something you enjoy that is also good for you.

Some great self-care activities include:

  • Exercising
  • Eating a healthy meal
  • Reading a book
  • Going for a walk
  • Getting a massage
  • Spending time with friends/family
  • Taking a nap and getting enough sleep at night
  • Meditation
  • Practicing yoga

Of course, this list isn’t exhaustive. There are countless ways to care for yourself, so you should find what works best for you.

Keep in mind that managing stress doesn’t have to be a solo effort. Reaching out to a therapist or counselor can be a great way to start dealing with your stress. They have resources to help reduce your stress and foster discussions that identify the cause of your stress.

Velocity Urgent Care is Ready to Help

If you find yourself suffering from the side effects of stress, Velocity Urgent Care is here to help. Maybe your immune system has taken a hit and you’re dealing with a cold. You might be concerned about high blood pressure or high blood sugar. Regardless, our providers are standing by to get you feeling better.

We’ll perform a thorough exam to get a better understanding of how your body reacts to stress. From there, your provider will work with you to come up with the best treatment plan.

In light of the COVID-19 pandemic, we are taking serious safety precautions to ensure that our locations are as clean as possible. We’ve put strict sterilization protocols into place and are carefully handling patients who may be contagious to ensure that each one of our clinics is safe for those who need urgent medical care or occupational health services.

Velocity Urgent Care offers convenient online registration that helps you limit your contact with others during a visit. You can sign up for an appointment online ahead of time and arrive when it’s time to be seen to skip the waiting room. We even offer text message updates so you can wait in the car (if you prefer) until it’s time for your appointment.

Velocity Urgent Care is an in-network provider for most major insurance plans, meaning you can be seen for the cost of your co-pay and deductible. All of our locations also accept Medicare, Medicaid, and Tricare. Veterans Administration beneficiaries are also welcome. To find out more about our services, locations, hours, and more, visit www.velocityuc.com.