Throughout life stress is a common problem whether it’s at work, school or home. The many negative effects of stress in fact affect individuals differently varying from health issues to work performance. Therefore, all individuals have different views of stress and various ways of handling it or otherwise managing their stress. Stress is when any living thing feels endangered and its homeostasis is at risk (Varvogli & Darviri, 2011, p. 74). Ways of dealing with stress are efforts of cognitive, behavioral, and psychological nature that allows a person to manage stress. Although there are different causes of stress, there are also many techniques for relieving it. The following articles are intended for the reader to understand these different techniques for relieving stress, and coping with the effects that stress can cause.
Varvogli, L., & Darviri, C. (2011). Stress management techniques: evidence-based procedures that reduce stress and promote health. Health Science Journal, 5(2), 74-89 In this evidence-based study, numerous stress management techniques are used to help reduce the ill effects that stress can cause. The authors explain each technique as well as the benefits. The techniques include the following: Progressive Muscle Relaxation which consists of tensing and relaxing muscles in the abdomen, legs, arms, and face; Autogenic Training in which the person learns to instruct the body to relax and control otherwise autonomic body functions such as heartbeat and blood pressure;
Relaxation Response is a repetition process that allows an individual to concentrate, and return to that repetition when other thoughts come to mind; Biofeedback uses instruments to measure physiological activity, which gives information to the user to utilize with changes in emotions and thinking to allow physiological changes; Guided imagery is audio, writing, or a professional using the person’s individualized images to reduce stress and promote health; Diaphragmatic breathing, or bell deep breathing, is thought to reset the autonomic nervous system, and promote relaxation; Transcendental meditation which is when the individual sits and repeats a chant with closed eyes;
Cognitive Behavioral Therapy uses assessments, cognitive and behavioral treatments, along with physician and patient cooperation to help the patient become self-aware, and change their way of thinking; Mindfulness-Based Stress Reduction uses meditation to help those suffering from mental or physical ailments; and the Emotional Freedom Technique which encompasses the use of acupressure while speaking a phrase out loud. All of these techniques allow the individual to relax and alleviate stress, and improve his or her health.
It also explained that these methods can help with cardiovascular disease, diabetes, high blood pressure, pain management, and reduce anxiety due to chronic illness. Engel B . (2004). Are We Out of Our Minds With Nursing Stress? Creative Nursing 10(4), 4-6. The article was written about large amounts of stress occurring in the nursing community and the effect it has on us physically, emotionally, and spiritually. It goes on to describe certain ways to approach stress and stress relief to include, taking certain actions to manage stress and be able to use that to better the profession. Stress is a part of our daily lives and even more so in nursing.
The situations that a nurse is put in on a daily basis are not only physically demanding, but are emotionally draining as well and even tax our spirituality having to deal with death and dying, sickness and disease. The article goes on to talk about stress manifestations, or how we perceive stress in our lives and our own approaches to it. Stress can be harmful and even debilitating. Or it can help sharpen your skills and challenge you to get better, depending on how you plan on dealing with it. Understanding stress and what it can do will open us up to figuring out how to use it to our advantage. One of the ways the article describes a way to approach a stressful situation is “mindfulness.”
This is the ability to realize where you are in the situation, to include your physical body and what is going on around you. This is described as knowing your body knowing what is going on inside and realizing where you are in the situation. Maloney, C. (2012). Critical incient stress debriefing and pediatric nurses: An approach to support the work enviroment and mitigate negative consequences. Pediatric Nursing, 38(2), 110-113. In this article Maloney covers stress debriefing for nurses involved in traumatic incidents in throughout the workplace, specifically paying close attention to critical incidents and pediatric nurses. Traumatic events are common in the nursing workplace and if not properly tended to, can result in physical and emotional distress.
Although quantitative research cannot determine the efficacy of critical incient stress debriefing, the author used a great example of a study that had extremely positive results that cut down the turnover in one hospital by half. Maloney also used studies that supported that critical incident stress debriefing was found useful over 98% of the time, and helped nurses find meaning over 97% of the time. Stress in these work environments can cause many symptoms that would effect a person’s well being not only physically but also emotionally, this article offers a great tool that can be used to reduce stress levels, and shows that hospitals are also contributing to stress management in other ways.
Furthermore, the article would be very relevant for research of stress management in nursing as well as for first responders (i.e. fire fighters, EMT’s and paramedics) and other agencies that respond to traumatic situations. The author points out those hospital administrators that are recognizing the needs for emotional support that goes beyond the responsibility of the individual, and those hospitals are implementing programs to provide all the support they can to help relieve the stress brought upon healthcare providers (nurses). Bento, W. (2012). Living with Stress as the New Norm of the Post Modern World its consequences and challenges. LILIPOH (LILIPOH), 17(66), 21-7. In this article, Bento states many different types of stresses that a person comes across on each and every day. He states that the “four main sources of stress are worth noting.
The first is perceived threats of any kind, whether physical, social or financial. Stress due to threats is always related to needs either being denied or jeopardized. Whether rational or irrational, the feelings generated from such stress translate into existential angst. The level of existential angst is higher the more it is perceived that there is no way to control or reduce the threat.” (Bento, 2012, 24). He also states that fear, cognitive dissonance and anxiety towards the future are three additional stressors that tax on to a person’s life and affects their daily habits. Knowing and understanding the factors of stress will allow a person to further comprehend his or hers environment and surroundings. Once that understanding is further developed, an individual will be able to make steps into controlling and managing different types of stress.
Thus, applying it into the real world and the world of nursing. Solowieg, K. (2010). Take it easy: how the cycle of stress and pain associated with wound care affects
recovery. NURS RESIDENTIAL CARE, 12(9), 443-444. This Article explains how stress can be detrimental to the human body, especially in a health care facility. Pain is closely intertwined with stress being that when a person feels pain, their level of stress and anxiety can inhibit optimal immune system function. In Solowiej’s article, it shows a study that “wound cleansing is considered to be one of the most painful treatments associated with wounds.
Pain itself can have a negative impact on wound healing, as it can contribute to stress and other negative emotional states including fear, anxiety and depression.” (Solowiej, 2010, 444). It is important to know how pain and stress are very similar because when combined the psychological effects is has on a person can slow down the process of healing. Furthermore, when initial pain is confronted right away with positive reinforcement, a negative reaction to a trauma, chronic wound or small damage can help a person or patient make a full recovery from a situation.
Urban, A. (2010). Managing stress. SRNA NEWSBULLETIN, 10(4), 7. The Article written by Anne Marie Urban gives us insight to how we can manage and prevent stress. Stress is inevitable cannot be prevented. It is an integral part of our life and will always happen from time to time whether it is a positive or negative one. However, even though stress itself is impossible to prevent, management of it can provide a positive response to a person’s life. Urban states that there are four ways for a person to positive manage and analyze stress. In doing so can provide a good energy for a person to use for their everyday activities. The four steps to a positive mindset towards stress are called Stop, Breath, Reflect, and Choose.
The first step, Stop, asks an individual to think and analyze what is going on in their surroundings, and asking to not let their emotions and thoughts escalate. The second step is to Breathe. When in a stressful situation, it is difficult to take a second to catch your breath, but taking those few extra moments can help a person gather themselves. Taking deep breaths, and inhaling and exhaling calmly can help trigger a relaxation response to the body. Reflect is the third step of management. Analyzing and thinking about the situation. This step asks to look from the outside and ask yourself internal questions. Asking these internal questions helps to see if an individual is being over reactive or if there are other alternatives. The last of the four steps is choosing your response to a situation.
This is a person’s decision to act upon a situation and ask themselves if the stress is worth it or not. Knowing these techniques can help maintain manage stress at a low level. There are many forms and sources of stress that can affect an individual’s well-being or surroundings. Being able to manage stress properly and doing so in a positive way will allow a person to achieve their goals or make a memorable impact on the world. Davis, C. (2011). Forum to help staff deal with day-to-day Stress . Nursing Management – UK, 18(4) , 18-21. This article is based upon studies in hospitals in England. The study provided a program to help hospital staff deal with stress from patient care, coworkers, and everyday stress in a hospital environment. In order to reduce stress, the article encourages discussion and group interaction in order to talk about emotional and social stress and challenges.
This article stresses the importance for “rounds” to be incorporated in all hospitals in order for the healthcare professional to verbally discuss a patient’s case, plan of care, and any concerns an individual may have. One weakness to this article is that it does not touch on individual support for stress. If an individual does not benefit from the rounds and their stress level is still high, there is no alternative listed. Also, being in a group setting may increase someone’s stress and may only make the individuals stress worse. This correlates to the topic of stress management because every day as a nurse, we will be faced with stress and may be emotionally stressed out due to a patient’s care or diagnosis.
This article is promoting and advocating how rounds will help decrease stress in healthcare professional, which will ultimately improve patient care. I believe that this article is on point with the implication of rounds for healthcare professionals. It allows the healthcare team to come together as a group and talk about problems and patient care, which can reduce stress and anxiety in the healthcare professionals. Cox, T., & Griffiths, A. (2007). Work-related stress in nursing: controlling the risk to health. Retrieved August 9, 2012, from http://ilo-mirror.library.cornell.edu/public/english/protection/condtrav/pdf/4stress.pdf This scholarly article was written to identify the causes of stress in hospital-based nurses as well as provide therapies and techniques in order to manage stress. This article states that stress in nursing is derived from three areas: work demands that are not matched to the level of knowledge of the nurse, work that does not fulfill their needs, level of control at work, and the lack of support a nurse may receive (Cox & Griffiths, 2007, p. 3).
The article also touches on how stress affects the health of the nurse as well. This is the strength of this article because not only does it list the origin of stress, but it also states how overtime stress can affect the health of the nurse. This is helpful to readers because even though stress is a normal part of life, it must be controlled and managed otherwise it can negatively affect the health and wellness of the individual. One weakness of this article is that it only focuses on hospital-based nursing and neglects nurses that are working outside of the hospital. One way the article could be improved would be to research and comment on the profession of nursing as a whole rather than to only focused on nursing working inside the hospital.
This article is directly related to the topic of stress management because it focuses on the origin of stress a nurse may face while working, the affects of stress on the nurse’s health, and tips to manage stress and promote health and wellness. This article is a great article for nurses to read because it provides tips and techniques to avoid and reduce stress as well as manage stress once present. Abraham, S. (2012). Relationship between stress and perceived self-efficacy among nurses in India. . Retrieved August 10, 2012, from http://www.ictbm.org/ictbm12/ICTBM12CD/pdf/D2144-done.pdf This scholarly article focuses in on nurses in India and how stress affects not only the nurse but also the organization the nurse works for. This article states that the individual as well as the organization should manage the stress but the individual experiencing stress should be primarily in charge.
The article lists techniques to manage stress but also touches on the how the individual’s capacity to cope with stress can affect the stress level. One strength of this article is that it emphasizes self-efficacy as a part of stress management. According to Abraham (2012), self-efficacy is defined as “beliefs in one’s own capacity to organize and execute the courses of action required to manage prospective situations” (p. 611). This is important for coping with stress because multitudes of tips and techniques can be offered, but it is up to the individual and the capacity for a change in behavior to cope with stress. A weakness of this article is that the study was conducted only in India and does not include nurses from all different countries. This could be a weakness because nursing practices in India may differ from
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