National stress awareness day
Today (the first Wednesday in November) is National Stress Awareness Day here in the UK. This day is designed to allow us to take a moment to think about our well-being and, if we need it, to remind us to find advice or support on managing our stress levels.
Some interesting stress stats for you:
74% of UK adults have felt so stressed at some point over the last year they felt overwhelmed or unable to cope.
- 81% of women said this compared to 67 percent of men.
- 83% of 18-24 year-olds said this compared to 65 percent of people aged 55 and over.
32% of adults said they had experienced suicidal feelings as a result of stress
- 35% of women said this compared to 29 percent of men.
- 39% of 18-24 year-olds said this compared to 25 percent of adults aged 55 and over.
16% of adults said they had self-harmed as a result of stress.
- 18% of women said this compared to 13 percent of men.
- 29% of 18-24 year-olds said this compared to 6 percent of adults aged 55 and over.
*Source: Mental Health Organisation
What is stress?
Stress is the body’s natural response to pressure. This response can produce physical and emotional responses and can be caused by a host of different situations or life events. Even positive life changes such as a promotion, purchasing a new house, or the birth of a child can produce stress.
Workplace stress is becoming more common than ever, according to a recent survey from Eve Sleep and Mental Health UK. They found that six in ten employees often wake suddenly in the night with thoughts of work and other worries, at an average of four times a week, or an incredible 215 times a year.
Some of the main signs of stress include:
|Irritable, aggressive or impatient||Finding it hard to make decisions||Shallow breath or hyperventilating|
|Anxious, nervous or afraid||Constantly worrying||Tired all the time|
|Like you can’t switch your mind off (wired)||Snapping at people||Difficulty sleeping|
|Depressed, lethargic, uninterested in life, miserable||Eating too much or too little||Digestive issues – feeling sick, diarrhoea, constipation|
|Lonely and unable to enjoy yourself||Crying or feeling tearful||Headaches, dizziness|
|Too much to do constantly||Unable to concentrate||Sore eyes|
It can be difficult to break the stress cycle – be kind to yourself, take it slow and set small and achievable targets, take time out as often as possible to focus on your breathing for a few minutes and try and employ some of the following ideas.
1. Use relaxation techniques such as having a bath, going for a walk, listening to music, meditating, deep breathing.
2. Find interests and hobbies that help to take you away from the stress for a while.
3. Make time to see friends – this can be difficult, but is definitely worth it.
4. Get enough sleep – take time to relax before bed and try not to worry if you wake in the night.
5. Engage in daily activity or exercise – even if only for 5 minutes.
6. Eat healthily – the right foods and supplements can help to support you physically and mentally.
7. Build your support network – this can include friends and family or professionals – or look for online communities of people in a similar situation.
Get involved in National stress awareness day
To help raise awareness of Stress Awareness Day, you can spread the word on social media by using the hashtag #StressAwarenessDay
National stress awareness day – 6th November 2019
Want to know more?
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