Stress results in physiological, physical and psychological reactions.


1/ Physiological disorders

Stress related disorders are numerous and various. The following highlight in particular the harmful effects of stress on:

- The hormonal system: stress can unsettle for instance the regularity of menstrual cycles in women, or else diminish fecundity in men.  

Immunity: the state of stress is most often accompanied by a fall of immune reactions. Glucocorticoids of which production is speeded up by stress can be found in the nervous and immune systems.

Premature ageing: generally due to numerous consequences on the organism, an extended and extreme stress contributes to speed up the process of ageing.

- etc.

The figure below highlights the main consequences of an extended stress.


2/ Physical reactions

Stress also acts on our mental state leading to:

- sleep disorders: stress creates agitation making the falling asleep phase difficult;
- indigestion: stomach cramps, slowing down or even blockage of digestion, etc.
- problems of hypertension,
- headaches,
- loss of appetite or attack of bulimia resulting in weight loss or gain.


3/ Emotional and psychological disorders

- concentration difficulties, loss of memory, lack of effectiveness in the job often driving to a depreciation of oneself; 
- impatience, hyperactivity, irritable, aggressiveness or passiveness;
- guilt feelings, general malaise, possible depression. "Under pressure of stress, the neuro-psychiatrists believe that approximately one person of five will experience a depressive episode at least once in their life" (Les Echos, February 13th, 2007).





 

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