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Stress is often associated with negative health conditions such as hypertension, diabetes, insomnia, obesity, poor memory, headaches, anxiety, ulcers, coronary heart diseases (CHD), and myocardial infarctions (MI). It also lowers the body’s immunity to fight infections. It is necessary to note that stress cases are more rampant during situations of job losses, which force individuals use to medical systems to suppress their already high cortisol levels, and this phenomenon puts a lot of pressure on the healthcare costs (Coon & Mitterer, 2007).
MI- myocardial infarction
CBS- aorto-coronary by-pass surgery (“Stress and Coronary Heart Disease”, 2004, p.47)
It is evident that stress leads to CBS, MI, and hypertension. Indeed, long-term stress effects on body organs and their functions often cause hypertension. It can be ascertained from the chart generated above that there is a high association between everyday (daily) stress situations and angina worsening among many patients. Moreover, both the psychological and immune systems are responsible for the coronary heart diseases, which come as a result of stress situations (Coon & Mitterer, 2007).
Acute stress situations often trigger the occurrence of severe cases of myocardial infarction (MI) and aorto-coronary bypass surgery (CBS) (“Stress and Coronary Heart Disease”, 2004). It is evident from the chart above that those people who sometimes experience conflict situations at home are at higher risks of contracting myocardial infarction and aroto-coronary by-pass surgery. However, those people who never experience conflict at home contract more MI and CBS than those who experience conflicts everyday. This is due to that fact that conflict comes with its resolution, thus it helps in reducing the level of stress and its associated illnesses (hypertension). It can as well be argued that stress is a psychological phenomenon since its determination can depend on stressors and individual characteristics (Brannon & Feist, 2010). To this end, acute stress causes high cortisol, but it leads to the reduction of the body testosterone levels.
Stress is common among medical students, especially during their final examinations. This also applies to workers who frequently visit healthcare clinics due to stress-related illnesses. Stress and hypertension result from job dissatisfaction among workers, personal conflicts and family problems. Somatic symptoms associated with stress include headaches, allergies, flu, cold and asthma (Brannon & Feist, 2010). These somatic symptoms and changes happen in the body since stress triggers the brain to release a hormone that stimulates the production of oxygen as well as glucose, thus sending emergency energy to the individual’s brain and other muscles. Hypothalamus activates corticotrophin-releasing factor (CRF) to produce adrenocorticotropin (ACTH) during stress. ACTH is situated in the pituitary gland. As a result, the ACTH travels via the bloodstream, carrying signals from the brain that have been sent via the nervous system, and it triggers the adrenal glands, thus stimulating the release of epinephrine and cortisol into the bloodstream. The epinephrine and cortisol are responsible for the release of oxygen and energy (Brannon & Feist, 2010).
In summary, it is necessary to understand that scientific studies have found some relationships between stress, diseases (hypertension) and the ability of the body’s immune system’s ability to prevent infections. Stress-related illnesses have made workers who are dissatisfied in their jobs to incur more medical bills thus putting a lot of pressure on the healthcare expenditures. As a result, this causes fatigue/anxiety among the co-workers, especially when they are carrying out their assigned duties. The link between stress and hypertension has been illustrated by chart 1.0, which has been generated from the data in table 1.0.