All people in the world come across with stressful experiences in life. It is a major problem that leads to many of the life disturbances such as emotional, physical and mental changes and in the long run precipitating factor to the development of various diseases. It is proven that the chronic psychological stress causes diseases like rheumatoid arthritis, coronary heart disease, diabetes, and cancer (Todays-Women-and-Health.com, 2009).
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The topic of the power point presentation is ‘The Association between Chronic Psychological Stress and Rheumatoid Arthritis, Coronary Heart Disease, Diabetes, and Cancer’. It is divided into 12 slides with relevant headings, sub-headings, graphs, charts, images and detailed bibliography used for the study. The fundamental thesis of this paper conveys that there are various factors related to stress, such as what is stress, symptoms, causes, effects and association between stress and four diseases, namely, rheumatoid arthritis, coronary heart disease, diabetes, and cancer and a proper stress management technique can solve it. The presentation would include both text and visuals including chart, graph, picture and model. The total timescale is about 5 to 7 minutes. The first slide is ‘Introduction’ where a brief outline of the topic is presented and it is presented with an image that describes the effects of Chronic Psychological Stress.
Stress is a complex word to define as it is the subjective experience of a person. The intensity of stress differs from person to person. Stress is a strained situation in which the person is pressurized to response to a demand. “Stress can be defined as an individual’s response to a physically, mentally and/or emotionally demanding situation” (Todays-Women-and-Health.com, 2009). Stress refers to ways in which the body of a human being will respond to tough, intriguing situations. The three main points of the paper would be identifying the causes of stress, exploring the affects if stress and recommendation to counter stress. Each point would be supported by well formulated literature gathered from peer reviewed journals, books and websites. The second slide is ‘Stress’. This provides a general overview of the aspects of Stress and here too there is an image of stressed individual to make the slide attractive.
The causes of stress can be classified as being internal or external. In the former case, internal stressors may include diseases such as cancer and diabetes. This kind of stress comes about as a result of psychological disturbance on the side of the patient. This includes beliefs, some expectations, low self-esteem, individual perception of issues and attempting to be a perfectionist. External stressors on the other hand result from daily activities such as job dissatisfaction, traffic jams, work and time pressures, lack of sufficient sleep and fear resulting from insecurity. The third slide is titled ‘Elements of stress’ and the subheading is ‘positives of stress’ with a graph representation of stress.
The causes of stress can be classified as being internal or external. In the former case, internal stressors may include diseases such as cancer and diabetes. This kind of stress comes about as a result of psychological disturbance on the side of the patient. This includes beliefs, some expectations, low self-esteem, individual perception of issues and attempting to be a perfectionist. External stressors on the other hand result from daily activities such as job dissatisfaction, traffic jams, work and time pressures, lack of sufficient sleep and fear resulting from insecurity. The forth slide comes under the same heading of ‘Elements of stress’ with a subheading of ‘Causes of stress’ as the second element relating to heading ‘Elements of stress’. A graphical representation clarifies this element.
On the physical side, stress has tremendous effects on the health of an individual. There occurs body rashes; there are irritable bowels and hives. The rate of an individual’s breathing increases and his or her heart beat rate goes up. Blood pressure increases. There is reduced digestion rate hence the person is likely to lose appetite. If the stress continues for a long time, the person is likely to reduce weight considerably since he or she will be consuming less food; hence health will be tremendously affected (Bunker et al., 2003). The fifth slide comes under the same heading of ‘Elements of stress’ with a subheading of ‘Effects of stress’ and it is accompanied with a thorough chart on the subject to make the slide informative.
There is a connection between body and mind; so the mental disposition influences on person’s physical wellbeing or disturbance. Physical changes are followed by a stressful event in a person. “During a stressful situation, the hypothalamus activates the pituitary gland, which in turn activates the adrenal glands to produce hormones that cause chemical changes in various cells and tissues” (Stivers, 2003). The overproduction of chemicals in the body causes for the suppression of the immune system. The suppressed immune system results in the development of cancer and other diseases. Immune system is considered as the sixth sense since it provides the health status information to the brain. The sixth slide contains the heading ‘Link between chronic stress and cancer’. There are sufficient details on the topic with an image of cancer attacked human cell to make the slide effective.
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Stress causes for the manifestations of depression, isolation, hostility and anxiety. There is link between these manifestations and coronary heart disease.
Researchers of National Heart Foundation of Australia undertook a study to assess whether psychosocial factors lead to the development of coronary heart diseases. They found that there is a consistent evidence for the influence of depression, social isolation and social support in the expansion and the development of coronary heart disease. Work environment also brings stress and strains in the life of more people. The studies in connection with coronary heart disease and stress show that there is connection between stress and vulnerability of coronary heart disease. Some people are panic arousing unlimited feelings and over excitement. Studies show that there is little evidence to connect coronary heart disease and anxiety. “Depression, social isolation and lack of social support are significant risk factors for CHD that are independent of conventional risk factors such as smoking, hypercholesterolaemia and hypertension and are of similar magnitude to these conventional risk factors” (Bunker et al., 2003). Many studies have proven that depression is one of factors that is susceptible to the development of coronary heart disease. It can be seen all throughout the world irrespective of age, sex, country. The seventh slide is ‘Connection between chronic stress and coronary heart disease’ and again there are sufficient details on the topic with a chart on the subject to make the slide extremely informative.
The eight slide is ‘Association of Rheumatoid arthritis and stress’ and again there are sufficient details on the topic with an image of bone that graphically shows the Rheumatoid arthritis cause. Rheumatoid arthritis is a chronic disease connected with immune system and the immune system causes for the pain in the joint tissue by mistake. In the view of the report of the National Institute of Arthritis and Musculoskeletal and Skin Diseases, there are around 2.1 million adults who are suffering from rheumatoid arthritis in US and the researchers and scientists have not recognized what are the exact reasons for the attack of immune system against the joint tissues. The scientists assume that there are a number of associated factors with the development of rheumatoid arthritis. “Patients often report that episodes of stress or trauma preceded the onset of their rheumatoid arthritis. While stress is nearly impossible to measure, some researchers have suggested that stressful life events, such as divorce, job loss, death of a loved one or accidents, are more common in people with rheumatoid arthritis during the six-month period before disease onset compared with the general population” (Carol, & Eustice, 2008).
When the life experience of the rheumatoid arthritis patients is shared, one thing is revealed that they have undergone the stressful conditions in their recent past life. The major stressful incidents in the life are accidents, death, divorce, job loss, punishments etc. These stressful experiences are regarded as the leading factors to rheumatoid arthritis disease. It is proved that there is connection between stress and rheumatoid arthritis disease based on a study experimented on rats. It is very difficult to come to a common platform of the conclusion because the experience that makes stress for a person may differ to another person as a challenge. Therefore, the scientists are not willing to state the effects of stress on rheumatoid arthritis considering the result drawn from the studies in animals. At the same time, there are a number of stressors in life and it is hard to define the impact of different stressors on the person and thereby the development of the rheumatoid arthritis.
The ninth slide is ‘Connection between diabetes and stress’ and again there are sufficient details on the topic with an image of the malady and other visual details representing the disease. Stress has a vital role to play in relation to the health of diabetes patients. When we confront a stressful situation, the body produces a high sugar level. Epinephrine and cortisol are the stress hormones that are produced to increase the blood sugar level. When a diabetes patient becomes in a stressed situation, it causes for production of high blood sugar thereby it leads to the vulnerability of diabetes. People who are not affected with diabetes has a compensatory mechanism to make blood sugar normal but this mechanism with diabetes patients might have been damaged. So they cannot control blood sugar in a normal way. “For some diabetic people, prolonged illness or distress will keep their blood sugar levels up for lengthy periods of time. Often insulin will be needed or adjusted during this period, so recognizing periods of stress are crucial for people with diabetes” (Nelson, 2009).
Slide number ten is about ‘Stress management’ and here the theories of competing with the aliments are discussed that are related to the above diseases arising from stress factors. Stress is common factor resulting in the reduction of activity and it destroys the creativity and innovative ideas of the person. Some stress in life will have a long term effect and it cannot be eradicated from life. It will be interrupting the productivity of life and leading to the development of disease. Therefore, it has to be managed well, for the smooth running of the life. Some of the techniques used in the stress management are given below. The person who is stressed should not indulge in thinking about the stressor that happened in life. He should always think about the positive things that happened in life. Deep and slow breathing is a technique used in the stress reduction management.
This technique is observed as a successful technique in release of stress. Laugher therapy is effective with the stressed persons since it normalizes the hormones and blood pressure and decreases the production of chemicals in the brain such as adrenaline, dopamine and cortisole and helps in the increase of endorphins. Listening to music is another way to decrease stress. Music therapy has an effect in persons and it relieves stress. Proper exercise is an effective simple stress management technique and it refreshes entire body. “Stress management training was associated with a small (0.5%) but significant reduction in HbA1c. Compliance with the treatment regimen decreased over time but was similar to that seen in patients receiving stress management for other reasons in the clinic” (Surwit et al., 2002). From these results, one fact is unraveled that the stress management technique will certainly reduce the risk of developing diseases.
Slide 11 is the concluding part where the entire contents of the power point presentation is discussed in a nutshell with the direction of future prospect of the study. Slide 12 is the Bibliography formatted in APA mode of referencing. There are 10 references which include books, journals and peer reviewed websites. In conclusion it should be noted that Stress is a vulnerable factor in our life affecting performance of entire life. This paper presents what is stress, its symptoms, causes, relation between stress and disease and stress management methods. The four diseases which are discussed here are rheumatoid arthritis, coronary heart disease, diabetes and cancer. The increased production of the chemicals in the body causes for the suppression of immune system and thereby the development of cancer and other diseases. It is a proven fact that there is a consistent evidence for the influence of depression, social isolation and social support in the expansion and the development of coronary heart disease. The stressful experiences such as death of the beloved, job loss and other failure in life are regarded as the leading factors to rheumatoid arthritis disease. Diabetes and stress have a connection since the stressful experiences result in the production of glucose in the blood. Finally, the writer has summed up some of the stress management methods also.
Bunker, S J., Colquhoun, D M., Esler, M D., Hickie, I B., Hunt, D., Jelinek, V M., et al. (2003). Position statement: ‘Stress” and coronary heart disease: Psychological risk factors: Is depression a risk factor for CHD?. The Medical Journal of Australia, 178 (6), 272-276. Web.
Bunker, S J., Colquhoun, D M., Esler, M D., Hickie, I B., Hunt, D., Jelinek, V M., et al. (2003). Position statement: ‘Stress” and coronary heart disease: Psychological risk factors: Outcomes of the expert working group deliberations. The Medical Journal of Australia, 178 (6), 272-276. Web.
Carol, M. & Eustice, R. (2008). Arthritis blog: Does stress trigger rheumatoid arthritis or worsen symptoms? Web.
Nelson, J. (2009). Stress and diabetes: Stress-o-meter. Web.
Stivers, J V. (2003). Stress and Carcinogenesis: The link between psychological stress and carcinogenesis. Web.
Surwit, R S., Van Tilburg, M A L., Zucker, N., McCaskill, C C., Parekh, P., Feinglos, M N., et al. (2002). Stress management improves long-term glycemic control in type 2 diabetes: Abstract: Results. Diabetes Care, 25 (1), 30-34. Web.
Todays-Women-and-Health.com. (2009). What is stress?: Achieving a Healthy Lifestyle for Today’s Women. Web.
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