Stress is a common word in today’s world. But what is it? Simply put, it is your body reacting to a potential hazard.
Stress Management Society explains that since the caveman days to date, when the body thinks it is under attack, it switches to a flight or fight mode and releases a complex mix of hormones and chemicals such as adrenaline, cortisol and norepinephrine to prepare the body for physical action.
This causes a number of reactions, from blood being diverted to muscles to shutting down unnecessary bodily functions such as digestion. Simon says with a light touch, “You don’t need to waste energy growing your finger nails when under attack.”
Short-term stress is normal. Long-term stress, however, is dangerous and is caused by the following factors as per WebMD:
- Health – Chronic diseases can lead to stress.
- Relationship – Low self-esteem, guilt, anger, etc.
- Emotional problems or lack of friendship or support in your life
- Significant life changes – e.g. death in the family
- Family challenges e.g. stressful teenager
- Conflicting with your beliefs and values e.g. due to nature of work
- Environment e.g. living in a crime prone area
- Social situation – Being broke or different from your peers.
- Dissatisfaction with your job
- Traumatic event e.g. natural disaster, accident or rape
Symptoms of stress
When you find that you are not sleeping well, having neck aches, a plummeting sex drive, having mood swings and low work concentration, you are probably stressed.
People cope with stress in different ways. Some will gnaw their nails, tap fingers on the table, crack their fingers, overeat, oversleep or some over indulge, all which are detrimental to the persons health.
But one of the best stress reduction techniques is actually very simple and cost-effective. It involves the use of squeeze balls, otherwise called stress balls. Stress balls are small balls or objects filled with a malleable gel or clay that are held in the palm of your hand. The act of repeatedly squeezing the ball releases tension and helps to relieve stress.
Stringyball shave gone a notch higher and produced stress balls with strings that are attached to the wrist so as to prevent the ball from falling and rolling away. They are small enough to be carried and used when travelling or at work. String balls come in three categories:
- Soft – For individual fingers of limited strength individuals
- Medium – For Grip training and users who need more resistance.
- High density – For users who require high resistance and for core training
Stress balls help in stress reduction by:
- Diverting your mind from the stressor
- Inducing progressive muscular relaxation
- Improving blood circulation
- Boosting endorphins
- It is a regular exercise, thus improving blood circulation and making you feel refreshed.
Moore Walter is a health buff who enjoys writing on health related topics. He is currently keen on Stress management and is researching on how to use simple hand exercises for stress reduction. He stays in San Jose with his wife.