3 Types of Stress
3 types of stress: by Scott Canipe
In the previous article, we dealt with the definition of stress. Here, we shall go into some detail regarding 3 types of stress.
According to the latest research, stress kills 110 million people every year
worldwide. That is approximately seven people every two seconds. These figures
are astonishing to say the least. Humanity needs a catharsis. We need to figure out how
to minimize and manage stress.
But first, we need to consider the different types of stress, how they are
manifested and how they affect us.
Psychologists, anthropologists, psychiatrists, etc. and many other academic
professionals had studied stress and compartmentalize stress into many facets.
However, from my research, I feel that it can be summed up as 3 types of
stress (acute, episodic, chronic).
The 3 types of Stress
Stress affects our lives in many capacities, however, it typically occurs in one of three
ways. It is incumbent for us, as we are trying to manage our lives and to
achieve our personal growth, to know what these 3 types of stress are.
- Acute stress - This type of stress is what we experience quite frequently on a daily basis. Of the different types of stress, this one is actually healthy for us, because it comes in short dosages and keeps us sharp and mentally alert. This stress occurs whenever one is trying to meet a deadline or if there’s some sort of immediate threat. Certain hormones such as endorphins, adrenaline, dopamine, cortisol, etc. are released during this type of stress.
Additionally, there is some pleasure involved with this type of stress, whenever one may be flying in an airplane for the first time, winning some sort of competition, catching a big fish, or riding a roller coaster.
- Episodic stress - This type of stress is basically acute stress that happens more frequently and for longer periods of time. Many times, people bring this type of stress on themselves as a result of being continually disorganized and living a chaotic way of life.
Most psychologists believe that type A personalities generally suffer from episodic stress. These people are always in a rush, often times, they take on too many tasks, and don’t have the time to organize everything that they’re trying to do efficiently so.
This stress causes an individual to be anxious and can lead to a lack of energy and focus.
- Chronic stress - This occurs when extremely difficult stresses are combined and proliferate on a continual basis. These are not short-lived stresses and can cause many problems in a person’s life. Hopelessness and depression are the typical ramifications of chronic stress.
This type of stress wears on people perpetually and drains the person of energy and optimism. They no longer try to find a way out, but except what they’re in and live in misery. This is typically manifested in financial problems, health concerns, negative relationships, and workplace pressures.
Of the 3 types of stress, this one is by far, the most taxing on a person’s body, mind and emotions. The end result of chronic stress can be life-threatening, resulting in heart attack, psychological problems, clinical depression, stroke, cancer, mortality, etc.
Some psychologists will list a 4th type of stress called post traumatic stress disorder or PSTD. However, I feel that PSTD is categorized under chronic stress. PSTD is a condition that someone suffers as a result of a previous traumatization and after the event has concluded, he or she are continually reminded of it weeks, months, or even years later. Some suffer from it until they die.
It is estimated that 13 million Americans, or roughly 5% of the population, suffer from this particular stress-related illness. Some examples are those that have been in war, children being victimized, divorce, witnessing some crime transpire, etc. Sometimes those that experience this type of trauma start out in a catatonic state meaning they initially have some sort of mental or physical paralysis. It takes an extensive period of time for one to overcome this.
There are many and varied reasons for PSTDs, and it is a stress that is mentally crippling to say the least.
As stated previously, stress related scenarios take the lives of 110 million people across
the globe. This means that seven people die every two seconds which is a
staggering number to consider. Something needs to be done.
Stress is something that we cannot run from, it is
inevitable that it will be manifested in some form or capacity. Therefore, it
is very important for us to learn about the 3 types of stress and which one
that we are experiencing at the time so that we can better deal with the
situation at hand. Acute, episodic and chronic stresses, for the most part,
encapsulate stressful experiences as a whole.