Understanding and Managing Stress

Understanding Stress
Understanding Stress
Stress triggers the body's fight or flight response, releasing hormones like cortisol and adrenaline, which prepare the body to act, increasing heart rate and energy.
Brain's Stress Command Center
Brain's Stress Command Center
The hypothalamus, a tiny brain region, is crucial for stress processing. It activates the sympathetic nervous system, leading to adrenal gland hormone release.
Chronic Stress Effects
Chronic Stress Effects
Long-term stress can rewire the brain, leading to decreased memory, difficulty in learning, and increased risk for depression due to neuronal atrophy in the hippocampus.
Stress and Neurogenesis
Stress and Neurogenesis
Surprisingly, some stress can be beneficial, encouraging neurogenesis. Moderate, short-term stressors can boost brain function and resilience, contrasting chronic stress effects.
Cortisol's Dual Role
Cortisol's Dual Role
Cortisol, often labeled as bad, is vital for many functions, such as regulating metabolism and immune response. It only becomes harmful at high levels over long periods.
Stress and Gut Health
Stress and Gut Health
Recent research reveals stress significantly impacts gut microbiota composition, affecting digestion, mood, and even the immune system, showcasing the brain-gut connection.
Managing Stress Neurologically
Managing Stress Neurologically
Neuroplasticity allows the brain to adapt. Mindfulness, exercise, and proper sleep can help rewire the brain's response to stress, promoting resilience and well-being.
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What triggers fight or flight response?
Cortisol and adrenaline
Hypothalamus activation
Neuroplasticity changes