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What is an operational definition of stress?

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Stress can be defined operationally as the means by which the body's coping mechanism adapts to external stimuli and changes in the surrounding environment, as claimed by Frank Morelli, M.A. Common physical symptoms of stress include low energy, headaches, fatigue, an upset stomach, including both diarrhea and constipation, insomnia, chest pains, muscle tension, an increase in breathing rates, aches, pains, frequent colds and infections, excess sweating, loss of sexual desire, dry mouth, difficulty swallowing, nervousness, shaking and ringing in the ear. Different people will experience varying symptoms based on their degree of stress and their body's natural response.

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Full Answer

Stress can initiate an individual's fight or flight response. If ignored, constant exposure to stress can result in chronic stress symptoms, which can negatively impact the body's immune system and response and cause tissue damage.

To reverse the effects of chronic stress, patients should consider stress management training that works by restructuring the cognitive system, or by changing one's mentality in order to dissolve cognitive dissonance. Other techniques involve learning how to relax the body as a whole through correct breathing techniques. , The symptoms of stress can be reversed in as little as 5 minutes through properly applied diaphragmatic breathing exercises.

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