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How Stress Affects The Immune System and Overall Health - Research Paper Example

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“How Stress Affects the Immune System and Overall Health” Stress is the concept which is not new for anyone and the prevailing trends of stress and its effects on each age group and social institutions make it more popular among the general public. However, a concise definition and conceptual depth of this term is unknown to many…
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How Stress Affects The Immune System and Overall Health
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Download file to see previous pages This weakness of body defenses against stress may end up creating negative outcomes on the physical, mental, internal and psychological health of people (Oxington 2005, p. 174). Stress also plays a vital role in changing and affecting immune system of human beings. This paper further analyzes how stress affects human beings’ overall health and immune system. A number of studies suggest that immune system is highly susceptible to stress and related issues. The effects on immune system are intense enough to reduce the effective of the system and consequently making human body more prone to illnesses. Stress hormones which are released in the bloodstream restrain the immune system to work efficiently and normally which in turn results in higher risks of illness. Psychoneuroimmunology is the study area of health psychology which mainly deals with the issues related to psychology and their effects on the immune system. Stress related issues and their influence on immune system forms a major area of research and discussion in this field. Research indicates that external stressors can be involved in the immune system in a number of different manners (Passer & Smith 2006, p 493). One way is the eviction of a variety of chemicals by extended fibers from the brain into lymph tissues. These chemicals bind to receptors of white blood cell and consequently affect the working efficiency of immune system. Moreover, stress hormones like cortisol and epinephrine, also bind to the cells affecting the overall immune system functioning. An effort to cope up with the stressors at times results in inappropriate behavioral patterns like substance abuse and insufficient sleep time which damages immunity (taylor 2006). In a healthy heart it is seen that a series of event occurs to pump blood out of the heart to the different parts of body. Cardiac Cycle consists of Atrial Systole, Atrial Diastole, Ventricular Systole and Ventricular Diastole. Systole in general is used for the contraction of heart muscles and diastole is used for the relaxation of the heart muscles. Atrial Diastole occurs when the atrial muscles relax and Ventricular Diastole happens when the ventricular muscles relax (Hall et al., 2011). Similarly Ventricular Systole occurs when the ventricular muscles contract and atrial systole occurs when the atrial muscles contract. Systole of 120mm Hg is considered to be excellent along with a Diastolic pressure of 80. Systolic pressure of 130 with Diastolic pressure of 85 is fair. Above this pressure it can be said that the pressures are poor. However the worst condition can be when the Systolic Pressure reaches 180 mm Hg and the Diastolic pressure reaches 110 respectively. Stress and sudden emergencies result in “secretion of excess adrenaline and noradrenaline, which causes sudden and considerable elevation in systolic blood pressure” (Khan 2005, p. 178) Blood pressure and stress are related directly or indirectly. Researchers have found that stress either directly or indirectly plays a role in increasing the blood pressure. Stress causes an individual to go through an unhealthy routine and this may cause several hormones to be released. These hormones then cause constriction of vessels which would raise the blood pressure in an individual. Hence it can be said that blood pressure and stress are somehow related. It is commonly believed that high blood ...Download file to see next pagesRead More
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