Stress can be defined as a strain on your abilities to cope with the demands placed on you by everyday life. Stress can lead us to feel overwhelmed by what is happening in our life, and we may experience a number of emotions that can be hard to manage.
Stress can result from things such as:
- Major changes in our lives, such as moving to a different city or changing schools
- Deadlines - school or work
- Conflict with friends, family or co-workers
- Daily hassles such as getting stuck in traffic, missing the bus, or being late
- Lifestyle issues such as alcohol or drug use, poor diet and bad sleep habits
- Concern about health problems - personal or family
- Your own thoughts, such as worrying too much
Research has shown that long-term stress can increase the risk of developing depression, anxiety, and other mental health problems. Learning how to effectively manage stress helps to prevent it from leading to these types of problems.
For common causes and symptoms of stress see What to Look For.