How to control stress?

Stress symptoms can affect your body, your thoughts and feelings, and your behavior. Being able to recognize common symptoms of stress can help you manage them. Uncontrolled stress can contribute to many health problems, including high blood pressure, heart disease, obesity, and diabetes.

If you have symptoms of stress, taking steps to manage your stress can have many health benefits. Explore stress management strategies, such as the following:
• Get regular physical activity
• Practice relaxation techniques, such as deep breathing, meditation, yoga, taichi, or massage
• Keep a sense of humor
• Spending time with family and friends
• Reserve time for hobbies, such as reading a book or listening to music
Try to find active ways to manage stress. Inactive ways of managing stress, such as watching TV, surfing the Internet, or playing video games, may seem relaxing, but they can increase stress in the long run.
And make sure you get enough sleep and eat a healthy, balanced diet. Avoid the use of tobacco, excessive caffeine and alcohol, and the use of illegal substances.
If you’re not sure if stress is the cause or if you’ve taken steps to control it but symptoms continue, see your doctor. Your health care provider may want to look for other potential causes. Or consider seeing a professional counselor or therapist, who can help you identify the sources of your stress and learn new coping skills.
Also, seek emergency help immediately if you have chest pain, especially if you also have shortness of breath, jaw or back pain, pain radiating to your shoulder and arm, sweating, dizziness, or nausea. These may be warning signs of a heart attack and not just symptoms of stress.

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