Stress: Meaning, Diagnosis and Overview

What is Stress?

Stress is a normal physical response to a stimulus that disturbs our physical or mental equilibrium.
Stress is what you feel when you have to handle more than you are used to. When you are stressed, your body responds as though you are in danger. Some stress is normal and even useful. Stress can help if you need to work hard or react quickly. But if stress happens too often or lasts too long, it can have bad effects.
Stress overview

Recovery Time

  • Recovery from stress depends on the cause if it is due to some minor problem then it is resolved once the problem is solved.
  • Whereas for long term stress it might take weeks to months depending on the psychological behaviour of the patient.


  • Diagnosis is done based on the physical examination and medical history of the patient.
  • There are a number of personality inventories and psychological tests that doctors can use to help diagnose the amount of stress that the patient experiences and the coping strategies that he or she uses to deal with them.

FAQs prepared by doctor

Q1.  What is the link between stress and heart disease?
Stressful situation is usually upsetting but not harmful. The body reacts to it by releasing a hormone, adrenaline, that causes your breathing and heart rate to speed up and your blood pressure to rise. These reactions prepare you to deal with the situation by confronting it or by running away from it ? the "fight or flight" response. When stress is constant (chronic), your body remains in high gear off and on for days or weeks at a time. This chronic stress causes an increase in heart rate and blood pressure may damage the artery walls.

Q2.  Does chronic stress cause high blood pressure?
Chronic stress does not cause high blood pressure. The exact causes of high blood pressure are unknown, but contributing factors include being overweight, eating too much sodium (salt), lack of physical activity and drinking too much alcohol. But chronic stress can take a physical toll on you. It can weaken your immune system and cause uncomfortable physical symptoms like headache and stomach problems

Q3.  How are psychotherapeutic strategies helpful?
Psychotherapeutic strategies are very useful in Post-Traumatic Stress, where the patients suffer from intense psychological stress after a dreadful event. It helps the patient overcome avoidance behaviors and demoralization and master fear of recurrence of the trauma. These therapies encourage the patient to destroy avoidance behaviors through stepwise focusing on the experience of the traumatic event.

Q4.  Why are there scarier dreams happening in stress after heart wrenching event?
It is hypothesized that in Post-traumatic stress there is excessive release of norepinephrine from the locus coeruleus in brain on response to stress and increased noradrenergic activity at projection sites in the hippocampus and amygdala in brain. These changes theoretically facilitate the encoding of fear-based memories and dreams.

Stimuli, stimulus, anxiety, depression, negative feelings, negative thoughts, loneliness, disappointment, hyper, serious, irritated, emotional changes, abnormal mood changes, abnormal behavioral change, mental disorder, poor concentration, memory, music, meditation, behavioral change, Stress doctor question answer, Stress facts,