Stress Archive


Not-so-sweet slumber

Morning back and neck pain are often triggered by sleep position or poor choice of mattress or pillow. Certain sleep poses, especially stomach-down, can lead to pain by creating misalignment of the spine and other areas of the body. To prevent back and neck pain, people can switch sleep positions frequently, align all body areas when shifting positions, use firmer pillows, consider buying a new mattress, and place a foam wedge under the pelvis or between the legs while sleeping.

Exercise helps counter anxiety from active surveillance

A 2022 study suggests that men who follow active surveillance for low-grade prostate cancer can manage stress and anxiety about their condition by following a high-intensity interval training program.

Presidential elections: Hard on the heart?

Emotionally stressful events that affect large numbers of people have been linked to an increase in heart attack rates. A 2022 study found the same correlation with a contentious political election.

Can stress trigger hiccups?

Hiccups are sometimes triggered by emotional stress such as surprise, fright, or nervousness. People can try to stop hiccups by holding their breath for five to 10 seconds, breathing into a paper bag, or sipping ice water. Occasionally, hiccups signal other conditions.

If climate change keeps you up at night, here's how to cope

Climate anxiety is distress related to worries about how the effects of climate change. It's more likely to affect adolescents and young adults, leading to chronic stress, depression, anxiety, behavioral problems, and more. What can you do to manage climate anxiety in yourself or a young person in your life?

How cardiology experts fight heart disease

Doctors advise that the best ways to lower risk for heart disease is to exercise, eat right, and adopt healthy lifestyle habits, like stress management, social engagement, and adequate sleep. But what do cardiology doctors do to practice what they preach? Three Harvard cardiologists share their heart-healthy habits and how they've overcome the same challenges their patients face.

War anxiety: How to cope

News and social media are filled with disturbing stories and images. Anxiety about war, coming on top of two years of the pandemic, is hitting us particularly hard. The symptoms of war anxiety can be physical or mental; knowing what tools to use and how can help break the anxiety cycle.

Could stress be making my acid reflux worse?

Emotional stress can aggravate gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD), a condition in which gastric acid washes backward into the esophagus from the stomach. Managing stress through meditation or exercise can help.

Get back your social life to boost thinking, memory, and health

Staying socially active is associated with cognitive benefits and may play a role in longevity, stress reduction, and controlling mood. If a person has been out of touch with friends for a long time, one way to restart contact is to send a brief message asking how they're doing or recalling a shared activity. If the person reciprocates, the next step might be to suggest a meeting, ask to get together, or schedule a catch-up phone call or video chat.

The worst habits for your brain

Many habits can contribute to poor brain health, but four areas can have the most influence. They are the four S’s: sitting, socializing, sleep, and stress. Research has found that poor habits in these areas can affect cognitive skills like memory, learning, and problem solving, and are linked to a higher risk of cognitive decline and Alzheimer’s disease. Adopting simple lifestyle changes may help.

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