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Taking a MoMint to Take Care of Your Stress

Stress can impact us in many different ways. Sometimes stress can be good and can lead to increased productivity. 

However,  prolonged increased amounts of stress can lead to an increase in cortisol levels in our body which can be detrimental to our physical and mental health. Specifically, too much cortisol can lead to weight gain, increased blood pressure, a weakened immune system and depression. 

Here are 5 ways to help manage your stress levels: 

Exercise

We’ve all been subject to making excuses to avoid exercising – being “too busy”, “not having time” or being “too tired to go”. 

Yet, most of us can appreciate that after a good workout, we feel great about ourselves. This sense of well-being is the result of the release of endorphins – the “feel good” chemical in our bodies that help to improve our mood and reduce pain. 

The next time you’re feeling stressed, try going for a quick run, brisk walk or workout! Even 10 minutes can do wonders! 

Deep Breathing 

Remember the last time you were really stressed out or anxious? When your breath became very rapid and shallow and your heart was pounding? 

These are all part of the body’s physical response to stress. As your breathing becomes more shallow, you naturally take in less oxygen and in turn, your heart compensates by pumping  harder to ensure that all of your organs and body parts remain perfused with enough oxygen and blood. 

Check out our article on deep breathing for more information! 

Support Networks

Most people have a tendency to bottle up their thoughts and emotions during times of stress, but this can just lead to increased amounts of anxiety and depressive thoughts. 

Rather, when you’re feeling stressed, talk to someone you trust! This can include family, friends, colleagues, support groups or even your healthcare provider. Even when this trusted person may not necessarily have the answers to your problems, having someone provide you with a listening ear can go a long way. 

Write Down Your Thoughts 

Oftentimes we have so much going on in our minds that we have difficulty making sense of everything. When we write down our feelings and thoughts in a journal, they become tangible. This allows us to begin recognizing the different triggers that cause us to become upset, and identify the different strategies we can use to feel better. 

Talk to a Healthcare Provider

Sometimes, these measures might not be enough, and we need additional resources to help us navigate through our stressors and challenges with mental health. Our Mint pharmacists are here to listen and help guide you towards the right direction. 

Reach out to one of our local Mint Health+Drugs to get started! 

RESOURCES

https://www.mayoclinic.org/healthy-lifestyle/stress-management/in-depth/exercise-and-stress/art-20044469 

https://psychcentral.com/lib/learning-deep-breathing/ 

https://www.health.harvard.edu/healthbeat/writing-about-emotions-may-ease-stress-and-trauma 

https://www.urmc.rochester.edu/encyclopedia/content.aspx?ContentID=4552&ContentTypeID=1#:~:text=Journaling%20helps%20control%20your%20symptoms,and%20identifying%20negative%20thoughts%20and