Nov 6, 2007

Heart Disorders

Hypertension and heart disease are also believed to be trigg by stress. Before you can look at what you can do to manage your stress, the first order of business is understanding what, exactly, stress is. Generally, stress is defined as a negative emotional experience associated with biological changes that allow you to adapt to it. In response to stress, your adrenal glands pump out stress hormones that speed up your body - your heart rate increases and you blood sugar levels increase so that glucose can be diverted to your muscles in case you have to run. This is knoen as the fight-or-flight response.

How stressed you become has much to do with your personality as well. For example, if you have a negative outlook on life, you will probably feel more stress than someone with a positive attitude. Some women like to find meaning in uncontrollable events, which gices them a sense of control. Others like the challenge of difficult situations.

The heart has four sets of valves that control the flow of blood passing through its four chambers. Most problems are caused by narrowing and obstruction or incomplete closing. When a valve is defective and does not close completely, blood leaks back. These defects cause the heart to work harder to pump the blood, and can result in heart failure.

The death of a loved one can sometimes lead to personal growth because we may see something about ourselves we did not see before - new resilience, for example. So even a death can be a good stress, though we grieve and are sad in the short run.

An estimated 5 percent of adults, mostly women, have a condition known as mitral valve prolapse,which causes problems for only a small number of these individuals.

Working with a therapist or counselor may help. In the meantime, here are a few suggestions for reducing some sources of daily stress: isolate the exact source of stress and see if there's a solution. See the humor in difficult situations, and try to look at lessons learned instead of beating yourself up. When times get tough, surround yourself with supportive people: close friends, family members, and so on. Do not take things so personally.
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