April 2006

Figuring out the cause of stress

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We know: we're stressed!: That's a start: now, if only we could figure out the cause

Hollywood star Jane Seymour has an unusual definition of anxiety. "It's worrying you'll never get your figure back after having twins," she confides in a TV commercial. Seymour may play Dr. Quinn on TV but we should all be grateful she isn't a doctor in real life. How could a small weight gain cause stress for a woman who has millions to pay for a personal trainer? It probably just means Seymour would have no idea what to do in a genuine crisis.

Stress in cup: Cutting back caffeine, and other hints for stress relief

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Coffee is "stress in a cup," writes stress expert and family physician Dr. David Posen in his latest book, The Little Book of Stress Relief.

Not only can too much of the coveted bean wreak havoc with your sleeping patterns, a couple of espresso shooters on an empty stomach will turn you into a nervous, hand-wringing wreck.

The remedy? Calculate your daily caffeine intake from all sources (even chocolate) and slowly wean yourself from the craved stimulant. Stay caffeine-free for three weeks and see how you feel. Likely you'll be calmer, more relaxed, says Posen.

Balance is key to stress management

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Relax, it's okay to be a type A; There can be joy in stress, says author, as long as there is balance; BEST REMEDIES FOR STRESS

Bipolar Disorder

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Managing the highs and lows of bipolar disorder

Bipolar Disorder, also known as manic depressive illness, is a psychiatric disorder that involves changes in brain function leading to dramatic mood swings.

The unpredictability of extreme highs and lows and their intensity can disrupt daily functioning for patients and their family members alike. Some describe it as living on a continuous roller coaster.

The darkness behind a new mom's smile

The tragic case of the mother who admitted to drowning her five children has shone a light on postpartum depression. But rather than raise public awareness of the problem, some worry it may skew the facts.

Andrea Yates, 36, was a stay-at-home mom in a quiet neighbourhood in Houston, Texas. Her children ranged in age from six months to seven years. Neighbours say she was quiet and rarely went outside.

Simple steps can lead to a less-stressed life

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Do you live a balanced life? Is your life rewarding? Do you enjoy work and have time for leisure, family, social activities? Or do you feel overwhelmed, feel one more item on your personal or professional agenda will bring a breakdown? Are you stressed?

Stress is an increasing North American phenomenon. Stress leads to illnesses such as hypertension and heart disease, domestic and workplace violence, accidents and low productivity. Stress in one life area spills into other areas. Stress is preventable and treatable, and can be a catalyst for growth.

You Can Learn to Deal With the Stress of Modern Life

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GUEST: Eli Bay, The Relaxation Response Institute

MATHESON: We all experience stress in our lives. Of course some people experience more than others. And we all react differently. We all cope differently. The bad news is too much of the wrong kind of stress can make you ill. The good news is there are ways to cope properly.

Eli Bay is the founder and president of The Relaxation Response Institute in Toronto. He is with us this morning.

Good morning.

BAY: Good morning. Hi.

MATHESON: So, can we talk about stress? What is stress? Because there's good stress, bad stress.

The effects of chronic stress can be serious

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Hearing someone say "I'm stressed out", or "He's under a lot of stress these days" are almost as common as observations about the weather.

The fact is, stress has always been a part of people's lives - it is the experience of adapting to change, and the only thing we can be sure will remain unchanging in this world - is change. But because change is happening at an ever-increasing rate these days, the negative effects of stress are becoming more a part of our everyday experience.

Stress and illness: the structure of a belief system

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Research on stress conducted earlier in this century was important because it suggested that illness and disease were a function not only of pathogenic agents, but the adaptive reactions of the individual as well (Hinkle, 1973). In response, scientific and medical research began exploring the interaction between individuals, pathogenic agents, and the environment. Since this early period, however, stress has proven to be a difficult construct to assess and measure objectively (Edwards & Cooper, 1988; Harris, 1989; Hinkle, 1973; Leventhal & Tomarken, 1987; Wong, 1990; Young, 1980).

STRESS! Have control over how you react

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STRESS! `Important thing to remember is have control over how you react'

SITTING AMONG the papers, Rolodex, notebooks and files on Danielle Seery-Smith's desk is a little rubber moose with big floppy antlers. During the course of each hectic workday, whenever she happens to glance at the moose, she pauses for a few seconds to take a deep breath.