Wellness News 7-7

By Abigail Knowles Wolfe

   April is National Stress Awareness Month. Sponsored by The Health Resource Network (HRN), a non-profit health education organization, Stress Awareness Month seeks to inform people about the dangers of stress and the harmful misconceptions about stress predominant in our society while providing successful coping strategies.
     Stress can be defined as a bi-product of poor or inadequate coping or as an unhealthy response to the pressures of life. While some stress can be positive, propelling us into action, towards a new goal or achievement, as a negative influence it can result in sometimes serious health problems.
     Stress rears its ugly head via wear and tear on our bodies over time, resulting in digestive or stomach problems, insomnia, headaches, increased blood pressure and cholesterol both risk factors for heart disease and stroke, and a plethora of other ailments. Stress particularly affects the African American population. Researchers from the University of California at Los Angeles concluded, in a study published in the Annual Review of Psychology in 2007, that race-based stress attacks health from many angles, including the brain, immune system, nervous system and heart.
     The month of April reminds us to take the time to deal with our stress in positive ways. Methods for dealing with stress and preventing it in the future include utilizing better time management skills, identifying one’s own stress triggers, setting limits, taking care of oneself through healthy eating and exercise, taking vacations and small breaks as needed, setting limits, spending time with friends who bring joy and a variety of other techniques.
   Stress Awareness Month is a national, collaborative effort that seeks to inform people about the dangers of stress while providing successful coping strategies to living a life less consumed by it.

Abigail Knowles Wolfe is a writer for Black PR Wire.