Stress: Is it written all over your face?

by Tracey on January 21, 2014

The sad fact is, everyone will suffer stress at some point in their lives. Although you may not be able to stop the stress, you can learn how to manage it – and it’s important to try. According to the Stress Management Society, 11 per cent of UK work absence is down to stress – amounting to a staggering 105 million working days.

The long-term negative side effects of stress are well-documented. At a basic level, it can cause the skin to react, the neck to tighten, and result in headaches and stomach upsets. What happens on the surface is from a biological reaction in the body: inflammation. Inflammation is the immune system’s response to infection and other influences. When your blood pressure rises along with your temper, try a few simple techniques to fend off stress – and a skin flare up.

Walk it off – prevent stress manifesting into tension in your neck, mind or skin
Regain your focus – shut your eyes to take your frustration out of sight
Drop it – shoulders hunched up around your ears? Jaw continually clenched? Drop your jaw and roll back those shoulders down towards your spine
Don’t be shallow – stress will cause you to take shorter, more shallow breaths from the chest, making the top half of your lungs do all the work. Relearn deep breathing: sit down, place your hands on your belly and breathe slowly through your nose, feeling your belly rise fully before exhaling.

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