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The Role Stress Plays in Chronic Disease

Elderly couple walking on crosswalk
By Homewatch CareGivers of Lockport

Older individuals often pay close attention to their health because they are aging. Aging
does not mean one is unhealthy, but it can mean they are at a higher risk for developing chronic
disease. Although it seems inevitable, chronic disease can be slowed down through stress
management. Our partners at Senior Living Experts have a few tips in order to help with stress
management.


Why Does Stress Lead To Chronic Disease?


Since we are humans, it is impossible not to feel stressed. It is important to acknowledge that it is
completely normal to feel stressed and anxious sometimes. However, there are ways to combat
this stress, and it can help prevent chronic disease.


People who do not keep their stress under control are at a greater risk of developing:
● Heart disease
● Autoimmune disease
● Memory problems


You are also at a greater risk of having frequent colds, chest pains, nausea, and depression. This
is all on top of the anxiety one feels while they have a heavy stress load. Copious amounts of stress result in a weakened immune system. Because the cells of your immune system are not working properly, it leads to increased levels of inflammation, which can
lead to disease.It works like Dominos where one thing leads to another, so it is important to solve the root of the
problem first.


Stress Management


As you age, there may be new stressors that can take control of your life. Here are some stress
management tips that may help you:
● Take on a new exercise routine, whether that is attending fitness classes in your
community, or doing some chair exercises.
● Get involved in your community and attend social events. Many senior living
communities have events and activities planned each week.
● Avoid sugar! Even though it may taste good, it is not on your side. Read this article to
learn more about how sugar leads to stress.
● Make a list of your stressors. Are there things you can say “no” to? Are there things that
you cannot control? Think about how to take these stressors, and gain control of them.
● Meditate. Sit in a comfortable position and imagine you are placed in a calming
environment. Then, relax your body from head to toe.
● If you are stressed about potential health complications, take a pause. Stress leads to
health complications, which leads you to stress about your health complications. Realize
it is a cycle and make a process to take yourself out of that cycle.
● Do things you love or pick up a new hobby. Participate in something that will keep your
mind calm.


Don’t be afraid to contact the staff at your community. They are kind individuals who want to
help you. If you need tips on how to get involved in your community, the staff can direct you to
the right places.


Our partners at Senior Living Experts are happy to answer any more of your questions. You can
contact us at 773-231-7212 or visit www.seniorlivingexperts.com.