Distress (medicine)

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Charity relieving Distress.

In medicine, distress is an aversive state in which a person is unable to adapt completely to stressors and their resulting stress and shows maladaptive behaviors.[1] It can be evident in the presence of various phenomena, such as inappropriate social interaction (e.g., aggression, passivity, or withdrawal).

Stress can be created by influences such as work, school, peers or co-workers, family and death. Other influences vary by age. This means that distress is the opposite of eustress, a positive stress that motivates people. People under constant distress are more likely to become sick, mentally or physically. There is a clear response association between psychological distress and major causes of mortality across the full range of distress.[2]

People often find ways of dealing with distress, in both negative and positive ways. Examples of positive ways are listening to music, calming exercises, sports and similar healthy distractions. Negative ways can include but are not limited to use of drugs including alcohol, and expression of anger, which are likely to lead to complicated social interactions, thus causing increased distress.

Higher education has been linked to a reduction in psyochological distress in both men and women, and these effects persist throughout the aging process, not just immediately after receiving education. However, this link does lessen with age. The major mechanism by which higher education plays a role on reducing stress in men is moreso related to labor-market resources rather than social resources as in women.[3]

In the clinic, distress is a Patient reported outcome that has a huge impact on patient's quality of life. To assess patient distress, a Hospital Anxiety and Depression Scale or HADS questionnaire is most commonly used. The score from the HADS questionnaire guides a clinician to recommend lifestyle modifications or further assessment for mental disorders like depression.[4]

References

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Featured disease

Metabolic syndrome is a cluster of the most dangerous heart attack risk factors: diabetes and prediabetes, abdominal obesity, high triglycerides, low HDL cholesterol and high blood pressure.

Affects one in three adults

Affecting about 35 percent of all adults in the United States according to the CDC, metabolic syndrome contributes to weight gain, by causing a state of internal starvation called metabolic starvation. This in turn leads to increases hunger, sugar cravings and increased portions leading to overeating and weight gain.

Cause and effect misunderstood

Since we traditionally thought that the portion control (which in turn was attributed wrongly to poor will power)is the cause of weight gain, rather than the effect of this metabolic starvation, all our traditional ideas about cause and effect of obesity were not only wrong but lead to the “blame the victim” attitude when it comes to obesity.

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Secret of weight gain, and metabolic syndrome revealed - it has been recently proven that metabolic syndrome, and the weight gain itself are caused by a process called insulin resistance. Check your metabolic syndrome risk using the free Metabolic syndrome meter. Watch this amazing Ted Med video that reveals the secret of weight loss - Stop blaming the victim for obesity


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