53 percent of people with stress develop a physical illness or psychological or emotional problems, according to the VII CinfaSalud Study on perception and habits of the population of this disorder. This work, endorsed by the Society for the Study of Anxiety and Stress (SEAS), shows that up to 12 and a half million people feel stressed frequently or continuously.
This study on the stress of CINFA and SEAS laboratories is based on an online questionnaire made to a representative sample of 3,009 Spanish women and men between 18 and 64 years of age from all the Autonomous Communities.
Four out of 10 respondents say that stress causes problems of concentration and performance.
- 4.6% say that it has made them lose friends.
- 4.3% that led him to give up his job.
- A 1.7 declares that it was the reason for divorce or separation.
- 1.5 percent say it is the cause of dismissal from work.
Stress symptoms and characteristics
The symptoms that most often affect those who suffer stress are: irritability (46.8%); anxiety (39.5%); insomnia (38%); headaches and muscular pain (32.2%) and physical fatigue (29.9%).
Stress affects women more often than men, since one in two (48.7%) states that they feel it frequently or continuously, compared to one in three men (31.5%).
Those under 45 years of age have a higher degree of stress than those who have passed that age.
Having children stresses more than not having them, and a second child increases in intensity.
The students are the ones who most indicate suffering stress (55.6%), followed by people looking for their first job (50.7%), and thirdly, by both employees and self-employed workers (41.4%). % in both cases).
Family factors (74.3%) generate more stress than economic factors (49.7%). Those who suffer stress, 50.9% attribute it to excess activities and lack of time, and the following causes are tiredness or sleep (46.2%), labor conflicts (43.2%), the disease itself or a family member (41.4%) and emotional problems (40%).
Also, new technologies , the study points out, are a source of stress. Almost 30 percent says so. A 68.2% indicates the coordinates of this stress in the impossibility of “disconnect”. For 54.6% it is the need for immediate response that generates stress, and for 33 percent the fear of addiction or dependency.
What do respondents do to control stress? Talk with friends or family (43.9%), more common in women; accept their cause and try to avoid it (40%); and practicing sports (38.1%), more frequent in men.
7.1 percent of respondents who suffer stress do nothing about it, and only 4.4% seek professional support.
Half of the people who visit the doctor or the psychiatrist are recommended to learn healthy habits and self-control techniques, while almost 60 percent are prescribed medication. In fact, 16.4 percent of those who have stress resort to anxiolytics, relaxants, antidepressants or sleeping pills with a prescription; 3.1 percent claim to self-medicate.
Decalogue of tips to keep stress under control
1. Face difficult situations . Instead of postponing or avoiding them, confront them, as they will stop anguish once you identify and resolve them.
2. Train yourself in problem solving . Learn to analyze them in a logical way: define the problem clearly, make a list of possible solutions and another of the pros and cons of each. Evaluate these advantages and disadvantages and select the most beneficial or least harmful alternative. After this decision making, it is important that you stop thinking about the problem.
3. Organize your time well. Plan your day’s agenda well, without overloading it with activities and managing unforeseen events with flexibility. In case of lack of time, select the most important tasks according to the priorities and, if necessary, delegate. And, if still, the pressure is excessive, learn to say “no”.
4. You deserve a break . Assign a daily space to leisure and personal relationships, so that you have time to rest and be with your family, and also practice your hobbies or go out with friends. On the weekend, rest, and take a vacation from time to time.
5. Learn self-control techniques . Regularly practice activities such as relaxation, meditation , mindfulness or yoga will help you neutralize the physiological activation of the organism that produces stress and give you greater control of thoughts and emotions.
6.Encourage personal and social relationships and lean on them. When you feel you do not know how to solve a problem, ask for help or advice from the people you trust the most. And offer yourself to support them too: helping others improve your own mood and reduce the impact of stress.
7.Watch your diet . Follow a healthy, varied and balanced diet, which includes a large amount of fruits and vegetables. Keep regular schedules and always take your time to eat calmly. Also, avoid drinks with caffeine or alcohol or, if you consume them, do it in moderation.
8.Do sport regularly . Physical exercise reduces the intensity of stress and helps the episodes last less, in addition to promoting a sense of well-being, provided that it is not done as an obligation. Most experts recommend two and a half hours of aerobic activity per week such as running, cycling or swimming, always according to your abilities.
9.Do not take hours of sleep . Rested, you will better face any conflict or threatening situation. Thus, try to go to sleep always at the same time and rest, at least, seven or eight hours each night.
10. Use professional help if necessary . If you still can not handle stress, use professional help. Your primary care physician can help you identify the problem and refer you to a specialist or therapist. This will teach you to modify your thoughts and emotions and to develop behaviors that help you to face problems with a more positive and effective attitude.