Up@dawn 2.0

Saturday, April 30, 2016

Mentality Effects Disease

    It is known that certain levels of stress can cause diseases to become worse overtime. It is now being researched that stress is a much larger contributing factor than it was once thought to be. Anyone who has dealt with stress, this should include everyone at some point in time, knows that it is mentally and physically tiring. This can result in further damage to the human body. We shall explore some situations that explore this area of study from my personal experiences.
    For starters, many vertebrates have stress levels that effect their health. Birds can undergo many stressful situations such as learning to fly, injuries, and disease. I have experienced many times finding young birds that have fallen from their nests. When I was younger, I would help my mother try to care for these young birds and try to rehabilitate them. The loss of the security causes much stress on the bird and usually ended in the bird parashing. I also witnessed a rabbit that was attacked by a feline. The rabbit was not majorily injured from the attack, so my mother, not knowing any better, decided to place the rabbit in an animal crate to further protect it. I checked the rabbit periodically during the day and found its state of health to rapidly decline. The rabbit, due to extreme levels of stress due to the confinement and human contact eventually went into a stage of shock. By the next day, it had perished. I now, with my education and rational thinking, put a high priority of blame of these deaths to the levels of stresses that were exerted on the animals. It would have probably been more humane to allow nature to take its course and could have resulted in a higher chance of survivability.
    Humans must not forget that although we have a higher level of thought processes and advancements in technology, deep down, we are still animals and share many bodily functions with other mammals, vertebrates, and other living organisms. The same effects that have been witnessed with animals experiencing stress should be considered when evaluating our own health.
    In order to correlate and extend my previous post on my grandfather's experience with dimentia, I shall include a story of how I belive his condition was catalized by his thoughts which increased his stress levels. My great-grandmother, Mary Gordon Thompson was the first known family case of Alzheimer's.
    Mary Gordon Thompson, or "grandmother" as the family called her, was diagnosed with Alzheimer's in the early 1990's. As a child, I did not quite grasp the idea of this disease. I would notice that she would repeat stories often or ask my name frequently, but as a child, I did not consider this abnormal. Through the years, I noticed her condition to worsen. She began to forget her grandchildren's names including my father. Later it was hard for her to describe or even name common objects. One memory that I will always have is when we showed her pictures of a family trip to Disney World. My father showed her a picture of Cinderella's castle and asked her if she knew what it was. She responded by saying, "That is a telephone." This confused me greatly and started my understanding of the disease she had.
    Since the decline and later death of grandmother, I noticed a great difference of my grandfather's thought process. Due to his mother's condition and his understanding of biology, he assumed that it would be possible for him to later have the same fate. He would continually talk and describe how he thought he was experiencing the same symptoms. It was always on his mind and was stressing him out. I know believe that the levels of thought, worry, and resulting stress further pushed him into a worsening condition.
    I do belive that if he had been more relaxed about this situation, he would not have the severity of his condition. I can know see that his stress is more increased as ever. He gets very frustrated not being able to complete sentences or finish daily tasks such as getting the mail or eating dinner in one sitting.
    To conclude, humans should try to decrease their stress levels to help secure a better and healthier lifestyle. High levels of stress has been observed to increase the severity of disease and complications not only in humans but also in many other forms of biological life. We should also always remember that humans are deeply related to these other biological systems and related stress should be considered when dealing with our own diseases and disorders. Reducing our own stress will increase the chances of a healthier body, mind, and future for the benefit of the world. Here is a link for further research concerning stress levels correlating to human health: Psychosomatic Disorders.

1 comment:

  1. Stress is a killer.

    One possible ameliorating intervention: see the post above. Not crossing my fingers for Tennessee getting on board with it any time soon. Meanwhile, I continue to advocate for the great de-stresser exercise. Unfortunately too many stressed older people feel physically restricted from even attempting it. Others probably feel as confined as that bunny.