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Stress and Coping - Heartbeat Trust

Stress and Coping

“Tension is who you think you should be. Relaxation is who you really are” ~ Chinese proverb

If you find you often feel stressed, and you don’t have good ways to manage it, you are more likely to have heart disease, high blood pressure, chest pain, or irregular heartbeats.

Stress raises your blood pressure. It not good for your body to be exposed to the hormones related to stress. Studies also link stress to changes in the way blood clots, which increases

health risks.

The way you handle stress is important. If you respond to it in an unhealthy way by overeating, smoking, drinking alcohol or not exercising that makes matters worse. On the other hand, if you eat well, exercise, connect with people, and find a way to manage your day despite the stress, that makes a difference in your emotions and in your body. In fact, most people find that routine, daily exercise is one of the best remedies for stress.

The first step is to recognise the signs of stress. The second is to find a way that works for you in managing it.

Try to change the source of stress, do you need to do something differently in work for example.

If the situation cannot be changed, change your reaction to it. Some ways to do this would be:

1. Indulging in a pastime you enjoy such as walking, playing a round of golf.

2. Take some time out from the situation which is causing the stress, listen to music, read, meditate or just take some deep breaths, in the fresh air if possible, these are all great ways to escape and relieve tension.

3. Talk to friends and family let them know you are feeling stressed. Plan some time with them in a relaxed environment where you can talk and laugh.

4. Handle life’s challenges one day at a time and remember not all situations are under your control.

5. Try to recharge your batteries at the end of each day by going to bed a little earlier and aiming for 8 hours of sleep.

Patient Testimonials

Some words from our patients:

“It is indeed so very reassuring to know that we have excellent doctors such as Prof McDonald and his team working on our behalf.’

“As a spouse of a stroke survivor, tonight talks made me more aware of the actions I need to take for my own health as well as that of my husbands.”

“I find the process reassuring and the people involved in STOPHF very kind and helpful”

“I feel secure in the knowledge that I am being monitored. Beneficial in having ongoing advice etc.”

“Because of the thoroughness of the annual checks I was kept aware of my medical condition”

“While on the research programme it was discovered I had too much hormone. Then I was sent to the Endocrinology team in SVUH for many tests. I was diagnosed to have a growth in my pituitary and acromegaly. I had surgery in Beaumont Hospital to remove the growth. I am so grateful to the Heartbeat Trust for finding this and sending me to have it researched and treated.

“Lovely people. Great work over many years which will clearly help our nation. Thank you for your information”