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Beating the Blues(战胜抑郁)

(2008-05-14 00:36:16)
标签:

杂谈

分类: 健康

Beating the Blues(战胜抑郁)

By Kathy White
                       
Did you know that stress can be healthy? Too much stress, though, can lead to problems such as illness or depression. Experts find out what causes stress and depression, and ways to cope with them.

All change — good or bad — is stressful. Whether it’s harmful depends on each person’s individual personality, their genes, the support of the people around them, their environment, and how they have learnt to cope with change. Some people can tolerate more stress than others, but too much stress over a long period of time can cause anyone to become physically ill or depressed.

Managing Stress
Big changes in hormone levels cause major stress, which is why your teenage years can be scary. Not only does your body change size and shape, but your mood can swing from “top of the world” one minute to feeling sad the next.

The teenage body fights hard to stay healthy but staying up late, eating junk food, drinking alcohol and smoking can affect your body’s hormone levels, which can make you sick and unhappy.

It is possible to manage stress by looking after ourselves and seeking help when necessary. It helps to eat a balanced diet with lots of fresh fruits and vegetables, complex carbohydrates ), protein and a smaller amount of fat. It also helps to avoid alcohol, cigarettes, drugs and caffeine. Another way to manage stress is to do exercise that you enjoy for 20 to 30 minutes, three times a week, to keep fit. Doing something relaxing also helps, such as tai-chi or yoga, and getting plenty of sleep.

You can help yourself get on top of things ) by learning problem-solving strategies that help you to work out solutions to your problems. Another way to relieve stress is to talk to your friends or family members about your worries.

Stress for survival
Everyone needs the stress response in their lives. It keeps us healthy, awake, alert and active. Without the stress of hunger we wouldn’t eat. Without the stress of pain, we wouldn’t know we were injured. Our bodies react when they experience stress, whether it is caused by an emergency or a slow buildup of many changes.

When there’s an emergency, your brain activates a relay of hormones (chemical messengers) that are released from the hypothalamus ), pituitary ) gland and adrenal ) glands. The adrenal glands produce the hormones adrenalin, noradrenalin ) and cortisol ).

Adrenalin and noradrenalin increase the amount of oxygen available to the muscles. That’s why your heart starts to pound when you’re nervous or scared. Noradrenalin regulates energy levels, helping you to get up in the morning and sleep at night. Cortisol protects the body from stress by helping it to heal afterwards.

Chemical Imbalance
The body’s natural stress response is perfect for emergencies but not for long-term stress and depression.

Constantly high levels of adrenalin can cause heart disease. High levels of cortisol can reduce the production of another important chemical called serotonin. This can cause problems with your immune system, which can mean you get more coughs and colds. Serotonin affects sleep patterns, which is why too much stress can lead to sleeping problems.

Another “happy” chemical called dopamine ) controls our ability to feel pleasure and pain. When dopamine levels are low, the body produces lower levels of endorphins ) (a natural painkiller), making the person feel like the world is a dark and unhappy place.

Treatment for Depression
When stress or depression gets out of hand, professionals can help. Doctors normally prescribe talking therapy; anti-depressants ) gradually balance the chemical levels that affect the brain and nervous system.

Depression is common and it’s curable. If someone you know is depressed, be a good friend and encourage them to see a doctor.   

战胜抑郁
译/朱志斌

你是否知道压力也能有益于健康?然而,过大的压力也会引发疾病或抑郁。专家找到了造成压力与抑郁的原因及应对的方法。

无论好坏,一切变化都会造成压力。而这种压力是否有害则取决于每个人的个性、遗传特性、周围的人对他们的支持、所处的环境,以及他们如何学习应对变化。某些人能比他人承受更大的压力,但是在较长时间里承受过大的压力会造成任何人或身体发生病变或心理出现抑郁。

调整压力

荷尔蒙水平的巨大变化会产生极大的压力,这就是青春期总是令人感到恐惧的原因。不仅因为你的体形发生改变,而且你的心情也摇摆不定,一会儿春风得意,一会儿垂头丧气。

身体处于青春期时为保持健康而竭力调整机能,然而晚睡、吃垃圾食品、酗酒、吸烟会影响身体中荷尔蒙的水平,从而导致你身体不适,情绪低落。

只要善待自己,在必要时寻求帮助,调整压力是可能的。营养均衡的饮食对身体有好处,它由新鲜水果和蔬菜,合成碳水化合物,蛋白质以及少量脂肪构成。远离酒精、香烟、毒品、咖啡因也有好处。调整压力的另一个方法是做你喜欢的运动以保持健康,每周做三次,每次20到30分钟。做些舒缓之事也不错,如打太极拳、练瑜珈、好好睡一觉。

学习解决问题的技巧有助于找到问题的解决方案,这可以使你在处理问题时游刃有余。另一个减轻压力的方式便是与朋友和家人谈论你的忧虑。

有压力才能生存

每个人在生活中都离不开压力反应机制。它使我们身体健康、头脑清醒、敏感机警、处事积极。没有饥饿造成的压力我们便想不起来吃饭。没有痛楚造成的压力,我们也无从知晓自己受了伤。身体感到压力时便会做出反应,无论这压力来自紧急情况还是由许多变化缓慢积累而成的。

    当出现紧急情况时,大脑就会开始荷尔蒙(化学信息携带者)的接力传递,荷尔蒙分别由下丘脑、脑下垂体、肾上腺分泌出来,其中肾上腺分泌肾上腺素,降肾上腺素,氢化可的松。

肾上腺素与降肾上腺素增加了肌肉的供氧量。这就是人们感到紧张或恐惧时,心跳会特别厉害的原因。降肾上腺素调节精力,使你能够在晚上入睡早晨醒来。氢化可的松则通过治愈炎症使身体免受压力的伤害。

化学失衡

身体的自然压力反应机制非常适于对付紧急情况,但不适于处理长期的压力和抑郁。

肾上腺素长期保持较高的水平会导致心脏病。氢化可的松保持在较高水平会减少另一种重要化学物质——复合胺——的生成。这将影响你的免疫系统,也就意味着你会经常咳嗽并易患感冒。复合胺影响着睡眠规律,这就是过度的压力会导致睡眠问题的原因。

另一种“令人兴奋”的化学物质是多巴胺,它控制着我们感受欢乐和痛苦的能力。当多巴胺处于低水平时,身体产生的内啡呔(一种天然的止痛剂)也会减少,这会使人感到世界竟是如此阴郁、令人悲伤。

治疗抑郁

当压力或抑郁失去控制时,专家可以帮忙。医生通常会与你进行谈话治疗;抗抑郁剂会逐渐恢复身体中影响大脑和神经系统的化学物质的平衡。

抑郁是常见病,而且可以治愈。如果你认识的人患上了抑郁症,你应该像好朋友那样鼓励他们接受治疗。

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