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Stress and Your Health

Generally speaking, stress means pressure or strain. Life constantly subjects us to pressures. In people, stress can be physical (e.g., disease), emotional (e.g., grief), or psychological (e.g., fear).

Individuals vary in their ability to cope with stress. How you see a situation and your general physical health are the two major factors that determine how you will respond to a stressful event or to repeated stress.

Genes and things that happen to you early in life (such as child abuse or neglect), even when in the womb, can affect how you handle stressful situations, possibly making you more likely to over-react. Overeating, smoking, drinking, and not exercising, which can often result from being under stress, can also add to the negative effects of stress.

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The Hormone Foundation

Dr. Lysette Iglesias M.D.

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