Headaches which affect about one in ten people may

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headaches, which affect about one in ten people, may also be triggered by stress. During a migraine attack, inflamed blood vessels and nerves around the brain cause severe throbbing, which is often accompanied by nausea and vomiting. Asthma. For some people, stress can trigger an asthma attack. During an asthma attack, breathing becomes difficult as the bronchioles, or air-carrying tubes of the lungs, constrict. The person may cough, wheeze, or fight to get air. If untreated, some cases of asthma can be life threatening. If you have asthma, it is important to discover what sets off your attacks and how to avoid or manage these triggers. High blood pressure. Prolonged stress can cause an increase in a person’s levels of cholesterol, the fatty substance that can block arteries. High cholesterol levels can result in high blood pressure, a condition that contributes to heart disease and stroke. Weakened immune system. Extended exposure to stress can reduce the body’s ability to fight disease by weakening the immune system. When your immune system is weakened, you may be more prone to colds, flu, or more severe infections. psychosomatic response 202 asthma For more information about asthma and other non- communicable diseases, see Chapter 26, page 690. Some headaches are caused by psychosomatic responses to stress. What healthful behaviors can help protect you from the negative effects of stress? Chapter 8 M anaging Stress and Anxiety
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203 Lesson 1 Effects of Stress Change: Positive or Negative? Change can be a source of stress for many teens. While some people take change in stride, others have a difficult time dealing with disruptions to their routine. Here are two points of view on change. Viewpoint 1: Tyrone B., age 16 I don’t like it when things change. It seems like whenever I’m perfectly happy with my life, something comes along to ruin it. I’ve been living with my mom ever since the divorce. Now my parents want me to live with Dad for the summer. I love my dad, but he lives about an hour away. I won’t get to hang out with my friends all summer or play in the summer soccer league. Viewpoint 2: Marshall M., age 16 Hey, life is an adventure, right? If things were always the same, I’d get bored. Change brings new opportunities. For instance, I couldn’t get into the music class I wanted last semester, so I took an art class that I’d never considered. It was fun learning new things and meeting new people. Are you more like Tyrone or Marshall? How do you usually deal with the changes in your life? Can you apply the same set of skills to every situation in which change occurs? A C T I V I T Y Mental/Emotional and Social Effects Stress can also have an effect on mental/emotional and social health. It can interfere with daily activities and relationships.
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