Money has been known to be the root of all evil, but can money also be causing Americans to lose their health. Put frankly, the answer is yes. Although stress levels have been winding down there have been certain groups that have been affected more including women, young adults, and parents. According to the American Psychological Association, “ The majority of Americans have reported their stress levels to be the same or increasing with a total percentage of 82.” This only leaves 18 percent of Americans whose levels had decreased over the year. This is a very low percentage. One would have to wonder if being mentally healthy is a top priority for the people. If stress is a factor more money can equal more health problems for many.
In America, for the year of 2014, there were several factors accounting for stress including work, family responsibilities, and health. Among the top listed was money reigning in at 64 percent. Not far behind, was work at 60 percent. Stress reduction management can be beneficial for the average person as well as those who live or work in high stress environments. The American Psychological Association lists listening to music, exercise, watching television, and surfing the net as the most reported sources of reduction management used. According to Susan Seliger, featured on WebMD, people who regularly practice Yoga report that it helps them to sleep better and they also feel less stressed. For those who have not taken yoga before the suggestion is to attend a beginner class to first get a feel for the craft. The yoga goers focus on taking their time. Yoga is not a competitive sport and improvement will come with time and practice
The American Psychological Association discovered that of the groups women are affected most. More women have reported unhealthy activities, trouble sleeping, and unhealthy eating habits. According to WebMD more forms of reduction management that are beneficial and effective are journaling, meditation, exercise, taking up a hobby, and talking to others. For those that do not have a positive or effective outlet for talking to others, consulting a professional is always an option. If money is a factor that causes problems in seeking more reduction management activities or professional help, there are other outlets. For health encouraged activities one can check local community centers and nonprofit organizations, as most offer free activities for residents.
An unconventional stress reduction technique that helps is smiling. According to Dr. Rod Moser, a study at the University of Kansas found that smiling does just that. Smiling should be a part of everyday happenings between people to promote friendlier and more positive interactions. Get this, the persons in the study who smiled more had a reduction in stress and those who had a genuine smile experienced even less. Even those who did not have a genuine smile that had to force one out in awkward or unpleasant circumstances showed less stress during the encounter. Dr. Moser says that humor is a part of his practice and humor makes people smile. It helps a lot with many problems. Smiling is a stress reliever that causes no problems and you don’t need anything more than just your lips, no money necessary.
By Cameasha Rucker-Muhammad
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