6 Ways to Beat Stress
Understanding stress and its impact on our lives is now more important than ever.
We all experience stress at some point in our lives, and for some of us, stress is more common than others. Since March 2020, in particular, many of us have experienced stressors that we could never have imagined. We’ve had to rearrange our lives to enable a world of social distancing, regular application of hand sanitizer, and masks. On top of that, many of us have had to figure out how to create virtual learning environments for our children at home. Understanding stress and its impact on our lives and how to beat stress are now more important than ever.
Common Signs of Stress
When you experience stress, there can be several negative consequences to your daily life. In particular, your work and relationships may suffer. Stress affects how you think, feel, and behave, and how your body functions. For that reason, it might feel like stress is impacting everything that you do. And the truth is, stress affects your overall health. When you don’t combat the stress, it can lead to more serious health concerns down the road.
Common signs of stress include:
- Sleeping problems
- Loss of appetite
- Difficulty concentrating
- Racing thoughts in your head
- Unexplained irritability
- Excessive worry
- Loss of temper
- Unreasonable actions
- Muscle aches and pains
6 Suggestions to Help You Beat Stress
If you are experiencing one or more of the symptoms mentioned above, you may be stressed. Thankfully, there are things that you can do to overcome stress so that you can get back to your usual productive and happy self. Check out these 6 tips.
- Exercise is one of the most effective ways to beat stress. It gets those endorphins going, which is good for the mind and body. In particular, walking, jogging, running, or any other exercise that involves repetitive movements can be especially stress-relieving.
- Reduce your intake of caffeine. Though caffeine can help provide you with that feeling of “fake awake,” your body can only safely tolerate so much of it. A high intake of caffeine can increase your stress and anxiety.
- Spend time with your friends and family members that you care about. Though it might be challenging now while we continue to socially distance, various safety protocols have been put in place all over the country making it easier to reconvene with those we haven’t seen in months. Further, as the COVID-19 vaccine becomes more readily available and cases of coronavirus continue to drop, we can all anticipate that we’ll be living our new normal soon. We can reconnect with those we care about.
- Let yourself laugh. Find opportunities where you are in a position to experience laughter. Maybe it is a phone call to a long-lost friend. Perhaps it is a comedy movie or comedian segment on Netflix. Whatever it is, seek out the opportunity to turn that frown upside down and enjoy the small things in life. Laughter is an excellent way to relieve stress.
- Don’t take on more than you can chew, and we’re not referring to your eating habits. One of the most common reasons for stress is when people take on more than they can manage. Learning to say no once in a while is a great way to take control of your stress sensors.
- Seek out what is causing your stress. In many cases, the causes of stress are apparent. If this is the case, it is essential to look for ways to remove those stresses. But when the stress is less obvious, it might help to seek out assistance from a third party, whether it be a trusted friend, family member, or therapist.
Making efforts to combat your stress is vital for your overall health. Further, stress can lead to chronic inflammation, leading to cardiovascular disease, diabetes, periodontitis, and even some forms of cancer. Also, when we are stressed, we often make poor decisions regarding our oral care. By way of the oral-systemic connection, poor oral health is linked to dementia, rheumatoid arthritis, and even complications with pregnancy.
When trying to beat stress, one of the best things we can do is surrender. When we try to fight against the stress, it can exacerbate the situation. But when we surrender, we can accept our limitations and our humanness. This is the best way to position ourselves to beat the stress in a positive way.
Avoid letting your stress get in the way of your oral health.
As we alluded to before, when we are stressed, it can be easy to neglect our self-care. And, one of the first things to go is often our oral hygiene practices. When we don’t brush twice a day, floss daily, and rinse daily with a fluoridated mouthwash, the bacteria that form in our mouth can start to make their way to other parts of the body. Therefore, we must continue to prioritize our oral health.
If you have experienced stress and have let your oral care fall to the wayside, it isn’t too late to go back. And, the team at Bruce Sexton DDS in Wayland, Michigan, is happy to help. Please either call our office or request an appointment using our online form to schedule an appointment with us.
We look forward to seeing you.