Knowledge - RISC

"Stress": The Hidden Threat​

Created By RISC | 3 weeks ago

Last modified date : 3 weeks ago

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In our fast-paced world, stress can be hard to avoid, but it threatens our health in many ways.

Stress is our response to challenging situations. It’s the body's instinctive reaction to preparing for an exam, working on a project, or presenting a plan to the boss. Acute stress helps us work, think, find solutions, and overcome challenges.​

But what happens when we’re always stressed?​

Repeated stress becomes chronic stress that can cause long-term problems. Our bodies gather energy to help us work and speed up brain function so we can focus. But stressed organs get overused until they fail, like a laptop that never reboots. Chronic stress can affect the entire body.​

Organs at risk include the cardiovascular, excretory, respiratory, and immune systems. A study led by Yuli Huang [1] found that continuous work stress increases the risk of having a stroke by 22%. Tanya M. Spruill's study [2] discovered that chronic stress raises blood pressure and increases the risk of heart disease by more than 50%. A study by David A. Kalmbach and colleagues [3] found that prolonged stress can create sleep issues. The body under stress is constantly ready to perform tasks, causing trouble sleeping and leading to long-term problems.​

Chronic stress not only causes physical harm, but it is also one of the leading causes of mental illnesses such as depression and anxiety. A study by Paula Cristóbal-Narváez and colleagues [4] found a link between depression and chronic stress. A study by Nuria Daviu and colleagues [5] explained the link to anxiety problems produced by persistent stress.​

Chronic stress is a leading cause of physical and emotional problems. In the next article, we'll look at how to relieve it.​

Story by Nattapat Tanjariyaporn, Senior Researcher in Brain Computer Interface, RISC​

[1] Association Between Job Strain and Risk of Incident Stroke ​
[2] Association Between High Perceived Stress Over Time and Incident Hypertension in Black Adults: Findings From the Jackson Heart Study ​
[3] The Impact of Stress on Sleep: Pathogenic Sleep Reactivity as a vulnerability to Insomnia and Circadian Disorders ​
[4] Perceived stress and depression in 45 low- and middle-income countries ​
[5] Neurological Links Between Stress and Anxiety

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