Stress and Your Health

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Stress and Your Health
What you can do to protect yourself

Don't let stress make you sick. Often we aren't even aware of our stress levels. Listen to your body, so that you know when stress is affecting your health. Here are ways to help you handle your stress:
  • Relax. It's important to unwind. Each person has her own way to relax. Some ways include deep breathing, yoga, meditation, and massage therapy. If you can't do these things, take a few minutes to sit, listen to soothing music, or read a book. To try deep breathing:
  • Lie down or sit in a chair.
  • Rest your hands on your stomach.
  • Slowly count to four and inhale through your nose. Feel your stomach rise. Hold it for a second.
  • Slowly count to four while you exhale through your mouth. To control how fast you exhale, purse your lips like you're going to whistle. Your stomach will slowly fall.
  • Repeat five to 10 times.
  • Make time for yourself. It's important to care for yourself. Think of this as an order from your doctor, so you don't feel guilty! No matter how busy you are, you can try to set aside at least 15 minutes each day in your schedule to do something for yourself, like taking a bubble bath, going for a walk, or calling a friend.
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