Stress, Health, Illness


Stress can be termed as the bodily reaction towards a change in state that requires a person to adjust physically, emotionally and mentally so as to adapt to the new situation. It is the result of a situation that makes one feel frustrated, nervous or sad causing. In many cases, regardless of the situation, the body’s reaction to any stressful conditions can be harmful to the individuals. Persistent stress is a leading cause of illness especially among people who find it hard to cope with situations leading to stressful conditions causing illness or disease. In other words, stress and disease forms a relationship with each of them contributing to the other thereby forming a vicious cycle in an individual’s life. Constant stress has been related with illnesses such as heart disease, obesity, cancer among other diseases that continue to afflict the sufferers (Dougall & Baum, 2001).


In the first case, the individual has a number of things to get done within a short period of time and so he finds himself in stressful condition that is primarily caused by nervousness as a result of the fast approaching activities. In this case, while at home, the individual constantly thinks about the outcomes of the finals and is therefore nervous of what the outcome could be. This causes the individual emotional and mental instability and therefore this disturbs and affects his bodily and emotional strength leading to the sickness.


In the second scenario, when the individual finds out that he had failed in three out of the four exams, that is enough to cause emotional breakdown as a result of the failure. This in itself is a cause of stress in that the individual leading to him trying to avoid the effects of the outcome of the exams which are not favorable by going out to the bar and drinking. However, he is unable to think right because he is mentally disturbed and therefore he can not remember what could have happened due to stress. He could therefore not take care of himself, he might not have eaten properly and the fact that he found himself in bed with a stranger could be a cause for more worry because he might have contracted a disease. In the third case, the individual is likely to get affected by the fact that he is unable to write his exams which are significant for him. He is unable to fill the Scantron forms and therefore this affects his biological systems causing him to worry that he may not be able to finish the exam contributing to the escalation of the effects of the disease he is suffering from making his hands swollen and be more in pain.


In conclusion, stress has enormous effects on ones bodily, emotional and psychological welfare and is therefore a leading cause of illness and various diseases. In this regard, stressful conditions may hinder and therefore accelerate the cause of an illness. The two are basically related and therefore they establish a vicious cycle in a pers



Dougall, A.L., & Baum, A. (2001). Stress, health, and illness. In A. Baum, T. A. Revenson, and J. E. Singer (Eds.), Handbook of Health Psychology (pp. 321-337). Mahwah, NJ: Lawrence Erlbaum.V

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