Ballina women urged to take steps to reduce stress
BALLINA women are being encouraged to seek out ways to manage stress in an effort to stop normalising the potentially damaging health issue.
New research commissioned by Priceline Pharmacy has revealed that 95 per cent of Australian women experience stress, which is the equivalent to 20,575 women in the Ballina area.
The data revealed 59 per cent of women have never consulted a health professional in relation to stress management, and 15 per cent don't even know who to ask for help.
Priceline Pharmacist Jeyda Shiaxiates said it is no surprise that such a large percentage of women are feeling the pressure of life, but the lack of knowledge around its health impact is concerning.
She encouraged women to stop ignoring the problem because reacting to stress in unhealthy ways can increase your risk of high blood pressure - the leading cause globally of death and disability.
"The research found that despite the majority of women understand the impacts of stress on their health and reduced immunity, only 47 per cent were aware that stress impacts heart health," Ms Shiaxiates said.
"This is very concerning considering heart disease is the second highest cause of death among Australian women.
"I encourage everyone to speak to their health professional about stress triggers, management strategies and monitoring programs as a first step because we all have different triggers we need to recognise and learn to manage.
"Stress may be common but it can be a potentially dangerous health issue so we have to break away from the idea that stress is normal and speak to a doctor or pharmacist about how to manage it best."
During the month of September, Priceline Pharmacy's health station now includes a medically reviewed stress test to help those in Ballina better manage and monitor stress.
"It's important that your goal becomes to manage your stress rather than to get rid of it because severe persistent stress can take a toll on your body and brain over time and can contribute to several health issues such as migraines, insomnia, high blood pressure, anxiety and depression," Ms Shiaxiates said.
"Consider simple lifestyle changes like maintaining a healthy diet, getting enough sleep, exercising regularly, and limiting caffeine and alcohol intake as well as speaking to a health professional like a Pharmacist or GP to help manage your stress.
For more information, visit www.priceline.com.au.