stress management program

In general, the goal of a stress management program is to reduce the impact in the individual of stressful environmental events and to better regulate the stress response.

Interventions may be considered at several levels:
· Removal or alteration of the stressor
· Change in perception of the stressful event
· Reduction in the physiologic sequelae of stress
· Use of alternative coping strategies

Stress management techniques typically include components of muscular relaxation, a quiet environment, passive attitude and deep breathing with the repetition of a word or phrase.

The physiologic changes produced include a decrease in oxygen consumption, reduced heart rate and respiratory rate and passive attitude and muscular relaxation. Such changes are consistent with a decrease in sympathetic nervous system activity.

Other measures, such as relaxation techniques and biofeedback, can produce a small reduction in blood pressure of 5 to 10 mmHg.

Behavior modification programs are also an important adjunct to smoking cessation and have been associated with a reduction in cigarette consumption. Improvements in compliance with medication regimens may be an additional benefit from stress reduction program.

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