April Is Stress Awareness Month

Population Health & Well-Being

April Is Stress Awareness Month

April is National Stress Awareness Month. Stress is the body’s natural response to pressure, which a variety of situations and events can cause. When we experience stress, the body releases hormones such as adrenaline and cortisol, which can lead to a range of physical and emotional symptoms, such as increased heart rate, muscle tension, anxiety and irritability.

It is important to recognize that everyone’s experiences are unique, and what may cause stress for one person may not for another. However, some common situations, like those outlined below, can cause stress for many adults:

  1. Work-related stress: Deadlines, long hours, demanding bosses, difficult colleagues, job insecurity and financial pressures.
  2. Financial stress: Financial difficulties, such as debt, unemployment, unexpected expenses and living paycheck-to-paycheck.
  3. Relationship issues: Marital problems, divorce, difficult family members and breakups.
  4. Health issues: Dealing with chronic illnesses, injuries and caring for sick family members.
  5. Life changes: Major life changes, such as moving, starting a new job, having a baby or dealing with the death of a loved one.
  6. Social anxiety: For some adults, meeting new people, public speaking and other social situations can cause anxiety.
  7. Personal and emotional issues: Struggling with low self-esteem, anxiety, depression or other emotional issues.
  8. Time management: Balancing work, family and personal responsibilities.

Our youth are particularly at risk for increased stress related to the following:

  • Family conflicts: Family problems, such as divorce, financial difficulties or domestic violence.
  • Social expectations: Young people may feel pressure to fit in with their peers, conform to social norms or meet certain expectations related to appearance, popularity or behavior—this is aggravated by the focus on technology and social media.
  • Academic pressure: Expectations to perform well in school, achieve high grades and meet academic standards.
  • Bullying: Experiencing or witnessing bullying can lead to feelings of isolation, fear and anxiety.
Population Health & Well-Being Team