Managing Stress | Whittier, CA | PIH Health

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Published on April 06, 2022

Managing Stress

Photo of a woman with a laptop practicing meditation in an officeStress is a normal part of life. Stress can come from physical causes like not getting enough sleep or having an illness. Another cause for stress can be emotional, like worrying about not having enough money or the death of a loved one. Stress can also come from less dramatic causes, like everyday obligations and pressures that make you feel that you’re not in control.

“Stress is the body’s response to protect you,” says Winston Lai DO, physician at PIH Health. “But, if the stress is constant, it may harm you.”

Emotional stress can lead to problems such as:

  • High blood pressure
  • More likely to become ill or to abuse drugs or alcohol
  • Less able to fight disease
  • Depression
  • Insomnia

Tips to reduce or manage the stress in your life

Eat a healthy diet and exercise regularly. A healthy, well-balanced diet and exercise can keep your body fit and able to fight disease. Exercise also is an excellent way to lift up your mood.

Exercise can help counteract the harmful effect of stress,” says Dr. Lai. “For heart health, aim for at least 150 minutes of moderate-intensity exercise per week. This can be done in 30 to 40-minute sessions, 4 to 5 days a week.”

Talk about your stressful situations with someone you trust. This can be a partner, a close friend, or a professional counselor. Sometimes just talking about your problems and concerns can help you put them into perspective. It can also give you insights into ways to deal with them.

Stay organized to help manage your time more efficiently. Think about making a daily list of things that need to be done, with the most important item the first on the list.

Remember, no one can do it all alone. Ask for help.

Use relaxation methods to calm your mind and body.

Take a break. Go for a walk, close your eyes and sit quietly for 10 minutes, or go outside for some fresh air, no matter the weather.

Get professional help if you need it.

If you think your health is affected due to stress, talk with your doctor. To find a doctor go to PIHHealth.org/Doctors

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The information in Healthy Living Online is for educational purposes only.  It is not intended nor implied to be a substitute for professional medical advice.  The reader should always consult his or her healthcare provider to determine the appropriateness of the information for their own situation, or if they have any questions regarding a medical condition or treatment plan.