Stress levels are an important factor to consider for people with gastrointestinal disorders.
Stress can worsen symptoms associated with gastrointestinal disorders, and can even cause symptoms in people who do not have a gastrointestinal disorder. For example, stress can influence gastrointestinal motility, as well as endocrine and immune processes.
Stress can also increase sensation within the gastrointestinal system, and is a risk factor for developing depression and anxiety.
Stress is a normal part of life, however it can become a problem when left unchecked. It is important to develop effective coping strategies to help manage stress. This might include
- Talking with friends and family members
- Meditation or relaxation techniques
- Engaging in hobbies
If you feel that you don’t have the ability to cope, then it is a good idea to consult with a mental health professional (your doctor can provide a referral).