Report: Americans Stress Levels Are Declining

Do you suffer from stress? Get on wit it, because stress is so 2007 for today’s Americans.

The American Phycological association survey dubbed “Stress in Americaî released today found that the average American rates his or her stress levels at 4.9 on a scale of 1 and 10. The poll which had 1 for very little or no stress and a great deal of stress for 10, sampled over 3000 adults and was carried out by Harris Poll. When these survey figures are compared to a similar survey carried out in 2013, they represent a drop from an average of 5.1.

Nonetheless, Americans aren’t in the clear just yet. Most of them still get what the survey thinks of as healthy stress rating about 3.7. This is causing alarming negative consequences in people not limited to of anxiety, fatigue, irritability, and other negative health consequences. Another perturbing statistic from the survey is the fact that nearly 42% of all adults have no idea whether or not they are making their stress situation better.

For instance, more than 20% of all Americans don’t partake in any activity that alleviates their stress. For those who do, listening to music (42%), watching at least 2 hours of TV daily (40 percent) and workouts or walking (43%) is what works for them.

It is also important to note that nearly all the cases reporting high-stress levels are within households making less than $50,000 per year. Those who are in this earning bracket have stress levels around 5.2 which are worse than the previous average. The others on the higher income side had an average stress level of 4.7 which is much lower than the average. Other metrics of interest from the survey show a disparity of stress levels between the sexes; more women report being stressed compared to men. This shows that nearly half of all Americans women spend sleepless nights because of stress compared to just 32% of their male counterparts.

The campaign also yielded that, financial issues are a big contributor to stress among many Americans. In addition, the survey also revealed that stress is a common denominator at some point in life, precisely more than 72% unless they are 49 without kids or financial worries to care about since more than 3/4 of all parents, millennials and Generation X guys had finances as a source of stress.

The survey also revealed that many Americans are putting their health care on hold for some reason. Nearly 12% have failed to go to a doctor for lack of finances while more than 9% have considered it for lack of money. It’s also worth noting that financial stress rolls over to relationship stress with more than a third of those who were surveyed stating that money caused stress on their relationships.

So, do you have stress? You need a friend. According to the survey, stress is more common in disconnected people compared to people with a network of people they can turn to when they are stressed or going through tough times. This means that people with people they can share their stress issues with were less likely to state that they felt stressed at all in the long term. Their disconnected counterparts on the other side pointed out that stress was all they had.
Anderson stated in conclusion that, stress affects all Americans regardless of their creed. However, he added that those most affected are women, young adults and those in the lower income bracket. For better well-being and health, the stress issues need to be addressed forthwith.

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Science Tricks To Help You Stay Cool

Everybody knows that science is cool, but did you know that science can literally help you stay cool during the scorching heat of summer? Yeah, central air conditioning helps immensely and going to Alaska isn’t a bad idea, too. But when you don’t have air conditioning or the budget to travel to the coldest place on the planet, what is there left to do?

Sweat It Out

Many people don’t like sweating. It’s icky. But in fact, sweating is the body’s built-in air conditioner. As sweat emanates from your skin, the surrounding air sucks it up, taking not only moisture but also heat. This helps reduce the body’s temperature. You might also have noticed that the moisture under your skin when sweating feels cool as it gets hit even by a gentle breeze. This is also the reason why it’s so important to drink a lot of fluids when it’s hot. When you suffer from dehydration, your body adapts by preventing sweat production to conserve as much water in your body. Not sweating means you can’t cool off, and your body ultimately stays hot.

The cooling nature of sweat also explains why it’s hard to cool down on humid days. High humidity means there’s already a lot of moisture in the air, so your sweat isn’t so easily sucked off your skin. What happens is that the beads of sweat roll off your body and you can’t take advantage of sweatís cooling effect.

Soak Your Head

Fun fact: Most of the body’s temperature sensors are found in the head. When you feel hot, try wetting your hair or even soaking your entire head in cool water. This isnít very practical, though, as you can’t walk around town with dripping wet hair. Instead, wet a bandana and wrap it around your neck. Make sure that the cloth is cold around the nape area. This cooling effect will be felt by your whole body. There are even bandanas that are specifically designed for this use. Some have gels that prevent water from evaporating quickly.

An alternative is to rub alcohol with the help of cotton balls on your wrists, feet, and nape. Similar to sweat, rubbing alcohol takes heat from your body as it evaporates. This is great if you want quick relief as the alcohol evaporates at a much more rapid rate than sweat. The cooling effect does not last as long, though, so you will have to reapply from time to time. If you sensitive and dry skin, this method isnít recommended.

Wear More Clothes

Yes, you heard that right: Wear more clothes. It sounds counterintuitive at first. After all, wouldnít it be better to wear less when the weather is hot? Well, not always. Remember that it is the evaporation of sweat that helps cool the body. When you wear clothes, they may interfere with the evaporation of sweat as airflow gets restricted. So it is true that the less clothing you wear, the cooler your body will be.

However, do not forget to take into consideration the sun. The sun’s rays are immensely powerful. Think about it: if its rays are able to reach Neptune and Uranus, which are light years away from us, donít you think they will affect us here on Earth? The answer is obvious. It heats up the skin and ultimately burns it. As the skin burns, sweat production falls but your bodyís temperature continues to rise. This is why wearing protective clothing is a must.

Where does sunblock enter the equation? Sunblock helps protect the skin from sun damage, but it can also affect sweating. One trick is to wear long and loose clothing long enough to cover your skin from the sun and loose enough to not interfere with airflow and the evaporation of sweat.

And talking about clothes, do not over-think colors. They do not really matter as much as you might think they do. The common explanation is that light clothes reflect light, thus helping you stay cooler. But have you ever wondered why Bedouins wear long, black robes? Yet you also feel as if you are being fried under the sun when wearing a black shirt. The difference is in the thickness of the material. Bedouin robes are created from a heavy and thick material. Even if the outside feels very hot to the touch, its sheer thickness prevents heat from reaching the surface of the skin.

And what happens when your drink a hot liquid? What occurs inside the body when the hot liquid travels through different channels? You probably know that drinking hot cocoa increases your body’s temperature, which explains why you sweat after drinking it. This can be used to trick the body into thinking that you are hotter than you actually are. The result is that the body intensifies the body’s sweat production, which means there is a lot more sweat waiting to evaporate.

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Setting Wellness Goals

Why are you working out? Why are you starving yourself? The answer to these two questions is pretty simple: you want to lose weight. The real question behind all of these is why you want to lose weight. You know that it is not for the dress you are going to wear for a friend’s wedding or the high school reunion you are going to at the end of the week. You know that you are up on your feet ready to exercise and limit your food intake because something tells you that doing both will help you achieve wellness like no other.

Wellness is all about achieving higher goals apart from weight loss. It is about ensuring that your body is able to withstand all types of viruses and bacteria that might threaten it. However, the road to achieving it can be quite tough. It will challenge your ability to stick to the plan. It will make you crave for the sugary treats that you are used to having. It will tempt you to skip exercise today because your body seems to be very tired. All these will make it difficult to achieve your wellness goals, but it doesn’t mean that you are bound to fail.

Perhaps all you need is to set your wellness goals and work hard to achieve it and maintain it. So how do you achieve this? Here are a few steps you need to follow:

 1. Sit down and write. When you write your personal wellness goals, you will realize that you are making them more real. By putting it in written form, you are putting a body into it, allowing you to make it real. They will be a constant reminder that you have goals and that you are working hard to achieve these goals.

2. Pick which among those goals you have written is the easiest to accomplish. Encircle it and focus on achieving it. You’d be surprised at how much more determined you will feel to work on achieving it and making it real.

3. Write a journal entry about how achieving these personal goals can change the way you look at yourself. Think about how your life is changing up to the last detail when you are able to make these wellness goals a reality. Write in bullets if you want.

 4. Now, make a list of how your wellness can be achieved. Make it very specific. If it means giving up that slice of cake after dinner, then that would be best. It should be very specific. Go down to the details. It takes courage to write down all that you will give up, but it will remind you that what you are giving up are real.

 5. From this list, transform them into real doable goals. Give your list a start-up and ending date. This will make sure that you stick to your goals. With the dates comes the responsibility to stick to it to be able to achieve that you want.

Setting goals and working on to achieve them can be quite a challenge, but if it means making you feel better inside and out, the whole journey will we worth it.

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