Stress Affects Students’ Health

11aBy Loren Honea

Students’ stress levels are on the rise as the semester comes to an end.

There are three types of stress: acute, episodic acute and chronic stress, according to the American Psychological Association, one of the world’s largest organizations of psychologists who lead the field.

“Acute stress is the most common form of stress,” according to APA’s website. “It comes from demands and pressures of the recent past and anticipated demands and pressures of the near future.” For example, acute stress symptoms are prompted by a laundry list of what is going wrong in our lives: the auto accident, a bad grade on a test or a deadline that’s passed. This type of stress is fleeting and doesn’t last long.

Episodic acute stress describes people who are frequently stressed and worried. “It is common for people with acute stress reactions to be over aroused, short-tempered, irritable, anxious and tense,” according to APA. “Often, they describe themselves as having a lot of nervous energy. Always in a hurry, they tend to be abrupt and sometimes their irritability comes across as hostility.” This type of stress recurs in episodes.

“Chronic stress comes when a person never sees a way out of a miserable situation,” according to APA. “It’s the stress of unrelenting demands and pressures for seemingly interminable periods of time. With no hope, the individual gives up searching for solutions.” This stress is dangerous and can seriously affect people’s health.

According to the Anxiety and Depression Association of America, a non-profit organization working to prevent and cure mood disorders, “Anxiety disorders are one of the most common mental health problems on college campuses. Forty million U.S. adults suffer from anxiety disorders and 75 percent of them experience their first episodes of anxiety by age 22.”

“We have many students coming in for stress related issues: ulcers, reflux, weight loss and insomnia,” said Dana Murakami, a radiologist. “This is the same as adults. We internalize a lot of stuff and it comes out in our bodies.”

“We tend to worry too much about trying to fit everything in whether that means giving up sleep and relaxation to do more work,” said Cody McKeon, CSN student. “We need to worry about our own body and stress levels before placing others ahead of ourselves.”

Taylor Barylsky, a CSN student, experiences stress daily. She said procrastination is the biggest issue for her. “I fall behind and have to play catch up the day before the tests by cramming.”

There are some tips to help cope and manage stress. According to Learn Psychology’s website, which has articles from experts, students should get plenty of sleep, think positive, engage in relaxation techniques, talk to someone and have a stress outlet.

“To reduce my stress I normally meditate or do yoga preferably outside in nature because nature is known to reduce stress,” said Savanna Mercer, CSN student.

11b

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