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Stress Management Amanda Countryman Clinical Health Psychology, University of Miami Developed in conjunction with the Heart Smart University of Miami Research.

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Presentation on theme: "Stress Management Amanda Countryman Clinical Health Psychology, University of Miami Developed in conjunction with the Heart Smart University of Miami Research."— Presentation transcript:

1 Stress Management Amanda Countryman Clinical Health Psychology, University of Miami Developed in conjunction with the Heart Smart University of Miami Research Team and the Miami Science Museum

2 What is stress?  Bodies response to change  Acute vs. Chronic  Common sources of stress  Family difficulties  School stress  Job stress  Financial difficulties  Relationship problems

3 What is stress?  Fight or flight  Prepares us for quick action Feeling goes away once stressor passes  What it feels like Sweaty palms or dry mouth Knots in your stomach Heart beating fast

4 What is stress?  The bodies’ stress response:  Hypothalamus, pituitary, and adrenal glands are activated  These release stress hormones  These increase heart rate and breathing and give you a burst of energy  Also control other body processes

5 Class Discussion  How can stress be both good and bad?  What do you think are the biggest stressors for teens your age?  What have been big stressors for you?  How did you feel?  What was your body doing?

6 What do the statistics say?  Most common sources of stress for teens:  School/work (78%)  Parents (68%)  Romantic relationships (64%)  Friends' problems (64%)  Younger siblings (64%) Chandra, A., & Batada, A. (2006). Exploring stress and coping among urban African American adolescents: The Shifting the Lens Study. Prev Chronic Dis, 6.

7 What do the statistics say?  Most common ways boys dealt with stress:  25% avoided or refused to deal with their stress  23% tried to distract themselves away from their stress  17% sought support  35% actively tried to reduce their stress  When it came to the girls:  19% avoided or refused to deal with their stress  14 % tried to distract themselves away from their stress  22% sought support  45% actively tried to remove or reduce their stress Chandra, A., & Batada, A. (2006). Exploring stress and coping among urban African American adolescents: The Shifting the Lens Study. Prev Chronic Dis, 6.

8 How does stress make you feel?  Give some examples

9 How does stress make you feel?  Angry, afraid, excited  Hard to sleep  Aches in head, neck, back  Leads to overeating, drinking, or other bad habits  Sometimes might not feel it all

10 Chronic Stress and the Heart

11  Chronic stress can cause:  Increased heart rate  High blood pressure  Abnormal heart rhythm  Chest pain  Difficulty breathing (JAMA, October 10, 2007—Vol 298, No. 14)

12 What Does Research Say?  If you are under stress, your blood pressure goes up, you may eat too much, and you may exercise less. But…Physical activity can lower stress and protect teenagers against the harmful health effects of obesity.  While a little bit of stress is ok, lots of stress over time can wear on your body and cause physical symptoms, like illness and fatigue. But…A healthy diet and exercise can help you feel less stressed. (Health Psychology, Annual Review of Psychology, Krantz, 1985)

13 What Does Research Say?  Constant stress can affect your blood pressure. One study found that adolescents with more long-term, negative life events had higher levels of blood pressure than adolescents with short- term, negative life events.  But…Talking to friends or family can help you get through the tough times and lower your stress. (Brady, Matthews Ann Behav Med 2006, 31(1):80–88)

14 How do you deal with stress?  Give some examples

15 Some Helpful Hints  Although life can be stressful, eating right will help you feel healthy, be more productive and hopefully less stressed.  Even by exercising and eating right, you can't fight stress without rest. You need time to recover from exercise and stressful events (like tests!).

16 More Helpful Hints  Simple things like eating breakfast, laughing with friends, and working out can help make stress more manageable.  Sugary energy drinks may seem to help you get through the day, but they often give short boosts of energy and leave you feeling even more tired as the day goes on.

17 More Helpful Hints  There are different ways to relax and deal with stress. For example:  clear your mind by going for a walk or imagine positive things.  try meditating, reading a book, or listening to music.  enjoy it!

18 Stress-O-Meter Quiz  Follow the link to find out your personal stress profile: ometer.html

19 Stress Diary Example Date and Time What Caused Me Stress When did you feel stress? What was happening? How I Felt What I Did About It What actions did you take to try to relieve your stress at the time? What Happened 4/7/2011 (10:30 am) Arguing with my friend Frustrated, angry, hurt Went for a walk while listening to music I felt more relaxed and ready to work it out with my friend.

20 Take 5 Minutes to “De-stress”  Step 1. Assume a comfortable position. Loosen any tight clothing, close your eyes and be quiet.  Step 2. Assume a passive attitude. Focus on yourself and on achieving relaxation in specific body muscles. Tune out all other thoughts.

21 Take 5 Minutes to “De-stress”  Step 3. Tense and relax each muscle group as follows: Forehead Eyes and nose Lips, cheeks and jaw Hands Forearms Upper arms Shoulders Back Stomach Hips and buttocks Thighs Feet Toes

22 Take 5 Minutes to “De-stress”  Step 4. Focus on any muscles which may still be tense. If any muscle remains tense, tighten and relax that specific muscle three or four times.  Step 5. Fix the feeling of relaxation in your mind. Resolve to repeat the process again.

23 Questions?


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