How Your Body Copes: Stress Hormones

Sometimes you have is commonly known as a "bad hair day". Nothing is going right, people are getting on your nerves, and money, work and other things are just stressing you out. Stress is more than just wanting to pull your or someone else's hair out. What you don't know that when outside factors are causing you to be in turmoil, your body is releasing stress hormones to help deal with it.

Here is some information on stress hormones that you may find will help you understand why and how your body deals with stress:

Balancing Act

The overall goal of your body's function is to achieve and maintain homeostasis. In doing this, your body releases certain stress hormones that will accomplish this equilibrium. When you are upset, sad or distressed, your brain will recognize this behavior, thus releasing stress hormones from the autonomic nervous system, the part of your body that controls automatic behavior such as breathing and talking. Two hormones will be released from this part of the brain, cortical and adrenalin. Cortical is a slower working hormone, in that it works to help us remember things, and to replenish energy. This is the hormone that our produces to help stave off bacteria or viral infection. That is why cortisone is used to reduce inflammation, as it is circulated in part of the infection.

In contrast, adrenalin and the autonomic nervous system work together to raise our heart rate and provide rapid responses to situation. This can be used to account for what happens in the "fight" or "flight" stress response.

The Good And Bad Of Stress

Stress hormones are good in that they provide the equilibrium we need when we need it. But, if we received too little or too much of stress, then it can cause harm to our bodies. If we receive too little, then our body will develop autoimmune diseases, in which the parts of the body that were once withheld by cortisol will no longer be, thus will be hyperactive and causes diseases such as arthritis. The best way to treat this is to supply extra amount of cortisone. On the flip side, if too much stress hormones are released, it can cause elevated blood sugar levels (hyperglycemia) as well as an increase in metabolism and blood pressure. Prescription medicine can help to bring these problems back to a minimum.

As you can tell from above, stress is bittersweet. We need stress hormones to control our everyday situations, and to help our bodies and minds cope. The thing to remember ris to keep our stress under control, either by prescription, therapy or just relaxing in a bubble bath, and we can continue to keep our lives in balance.