Stress can be defined as the sum of physical and mental responses caused by certain external stimuli (stressors) and allow the individual (human or animal) to overcome certain requirements of the environment and the physical and mental burden caused by this process.

The term stress has been borrowed from physics, which means the tension and wear they are exposed to the materials, and first used in today's direction in 1936 by physician Hans Selye in the journal Nature.

Stress can be caused by anxiety and depression due to the sudden change in lifestyle and exposure to a particular environment, which makes a person feel a certain kind of anguish. When the symptoms of stress persist for a long period of time, there may be feelings of avoidance (related to anxiety and depression). Our defenses mechanisms are not responding effectively, thus increasing the possibility of disease occur, especially cardiovascular.

Another important term in the study of stress is the term stressor; indicates that an event or happening that requires an individual to an adaptive reaction to the new situation; the reaction will give the name of coping (dealing). These coping responses may be functional or malfunctioning, or not as fulfilling its role in overcoming the situation in adapting to it.

Stressors, depending on the degree of their harmfulness and the time required for the adaptation process, divided into:

1. Critical biographical events (life events): events are locatable in time and space, which require a profound restructuring of the life situation provoke emotional-affective long term. Such events can be both positive and negative and have different degrees of normatively; the social demand. Examples are marriage, birth of a child, sudden death of a person, accident, etc..

2.Traumatic stressors; are a special kind of biographical events that critics have a very high intensity and that exceed the adaptive capacity of individual

3. Everyday stressors (daily hassles); are stressful events of the day to day, that interfere with the welfare of the undivided, and that experience as threatening, or frustrating losses. Examples are problems with weight or appearance, health problems of close relatives who require care, trouble with daily events (home care, rising prices, financial worries, etc.).

4. Chronic stressors (chronic strain); are situations or conditions spanning a relatively long time and brings with it experiences repeated and chronic stress (overwork, unemployment, etc.) and specific situations (beginning with and so defined) that bring lasting consequences (Example: Stress caused by problems stemming from divorce).

Examples of stressors:

• Contempt loving;

• Pain and Sorrow;

• Strong light;

• High levels of sound;

• Events: births, death, war, meetings, weddings, divorces, changes, chronic diseases, unemployment and amnesia;

• Liabilities: Unpaid Debts and lack of money;

• Work / study: exams, slow traffic and deadlines for small projects;

• Personal relationships: conflict and disappointment;

• Lifestyle: unhealthy food, smoking, alcoholism and insomnia;

• Exposure to constant stress in children (child abuse);

• Age.

In a way stress is necessary to keep us moving and functional; however if you feel that the high levels of stress in your life are interfering in your everyday performance or interfering with your well being you must immediately look for some help and see why your defense mechanisms are not being enough.

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