“While everyone experiences stress at varying levels and for different reasons, learning how to properly identify the presence of stress in your day-to-day activities enables you to better work through the ups and downs of life before it impacts your overall health,” said Kimberly D. Tuck, RN, Chief Executive Officer and President of NurseWise.
Here are a few tips from the nurses at NurseWise to help you identify signs of stress:
· Know what it is. Stress is not always a bad thing. Stress is defined as a physiological response to intense or frightening situations. The difference between healthy and unhealthy stress has to do with whether if it is ongoing or short-lived and how you respond to it.
· Create a stress status journal. Whether it’s at home, work or the many stops you make in between, journal your mood every two to three hours for one week or when you feel a drastic change in mood. With each journal entry, record the time of day, your location and how you’re feeling. Are you happy, sad, anxious, angry, overwhelmed or emotionally charged? Is what you’re feeling manageable? After a week of completing your stress status updates, you should begin to see a clear pattern that reveals the activities and issues that enhance or hamper your emotional state. Once you know which activities heighten your stress level, you can begin creating and structuring activities and routines that aid with managing the presence and influence of stress.
· Learn to stop, recognize and reverse stress. People don’t always think about experiencing stress, but they usually notice their body’s response to stressful situations. Do you get an upset stomach, nervousness, headaches, shaky hands, irritability, excessive perspiration or feel disoriented when you’re facing an uncomfortable situation? If you learn to watch for your body’s natural response to stress, you will be more likely to recognize when your stress level is about to peak – giving yourself the ability to reduce the intensity and duration of stress episodes. By continually practicing stress reduction techniques and exercises, you will begin to build a mind-over-matter mentality that will help adjust your body’s natural inclination to react to stressful situations.
· Shift your perspective. Think about the situation from another point of view or as if it is happening to someone else. Doing this can help you be more objective and make a stressful situation result in a less negative response.
· Talk to a health professional for evaluation and advice. If you aren’t sure if stress is taking a toll on your wellbeing, ask a health care professional for help identifying what you’re experiencing. The best way to find out how stress is affecting you is to talk to someone who is licensed and versed in stress evaluation procedures and mental wellness practices. Always remember that reaching out for help is never a sign of weakness. By taking a proactive approach to your psychological health, you are moving one step closer to obtaining greater mental clarity, increased physical capability and overall happiness.
· Get clinical input. If you feel overcome with anxiety and aren’t sure if it is a reaction to stress or something more, call a nurse advice line to speak with a trained medical professional who can listen to your concerns. If your situation isn’t stress-related, the nurses will be able to provide you with what steps you should take to ensure your health. If stress is the cause, the nurses can provide you with safe, easy techniques to ease your mind and reduce your anxiety, as well as direct you to community resources or a medical provider for follow-up if needed. If you or someone you know are feeling overwhelmed to the point of crisis, dial 911 immediately to speak with an emergency medical service professional.
For more information about recognizing stress, visit www.cdc.gov/
NurseWise is a wholly owned subsidiary of Centene Corporation that is in the business of providing multilingual telehealth (nurse triage and health education) services. We partner with health plans, hospitals, providers, colleges and universities, and other specialty organizations to ensure all callers have access to high quality, appropriate care. Our services are designed to encourage callers to become active participants in their health care, engaging in activities that promote appropriate utilization of care resources as well as better health outcomes for individuals and their families. We have provided uninterrupted service every day since 1995. NurseWise experienced Customer Care Professionals and Registered Nurses at our call centers across the country provide Care.Right.Now. through delivery of health information, education, and advice in a culturally and linguistically sensitive manner. NurseWise has locations in Tempe, Ariz.; El Paso, Texas; Tyler, Texas; Fort Lauderdale, Fla.; Atlanta, Ga.; and St. Louis, Mo.
For more information, please visit our website www.nursewise.com or contact us today at firstname.lastname@example.org.