Got stress?

While stress can motivate students to be successful, it also can get in the way of a healthy lifestyle.

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Courtesy of Pixabay.com

Courtesy of Pixabay.com

Courtesy of Pixabay.com

Jade Ogunmodede, Staff Writer

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Maddie​ ​Johnson,​ ​a​ ​senior​ ​in​ ​high​ ​school,​ ​has​ ​a​ ​job and​ ​has​ ​to​ ​work​ ​a​ ​double​ ​shift.​ ​She​ ​also​ ​has​ ​school​ ​tomorrow.​ ​She​ ​has​ ​three​ ​finals​ ​to study​ ​for​ ​and​ ​to​ ​take​ ​in​ ​school.​ ​After​ ​school,​ ​she​ ​has​ ​an​ ​away​ ​game​ ​for​ ​basketball​ ​and she​ ​also​ ​has​ ​to​ ​work​ ​after​ ​basketball.​ ​She​ ​is​ ​under​ ​a​ ​lot​ ​of​ ​stress​ ​and​ ​feels​ ​exhausted.

​Stress​ ​is​ ​pressure​ ​or​ ​tension​ ​or​ ​a​ ​state​ ​of​ ​mental​ ​or​ ​emotional​ ​strain​ ​that​ ​most students​ ​in​ ​high​ ​school​ ​go​ ​through.​ ​

“Stress​ ​changes​ ​the​ ​way​ ​students​ ​think​ ​and​ ​how​ ​they​ ​feel​ ​because​ ​it​ ​alters​ ​their emotion,”​ ​said​ ​Ebere​ ​Chukwuyem,​ ​a​ ​junior​ .​ ​Students become​ ​very​ ​strained,​ ​mentally​ ​and​ ​emotionally​,​ ​because​ ​they​ ​feel​ ​like​ ​there​ ​is no​ ​way​ ​out​ ​of​ ​their​ ​stress.​ ​Also,​ ​they​ ​feel​ ​pressured​ ​because​ ​they​ ​spend​ ​most​ ​of​ ​their time​ ​trying​ ​to​ ​balance​ ​homework​ ​that​ ​have​ ​due​ ​dates,​ ​projects,​ ​colleges​ ​to​ ​go​ ​to, exams,​ ​presentations​ ​and​ ​also​ ​activities​ ​to​ ​do​ ​and​ ​volunteer​ ​work.

​“Stress​ ​is​ ​something​ ​individuals​ ​need​ ​to​ ​go​ ​through​ ​in​ ​order​ ​to​ ​be​ ​successful. Stress​ ​is​ ​the​ ​necessity​ ​of​ ​life,”​ ​said​ ​Chukwuyem.​ ​Without​ ​stress,​ ​life​ ​would​ ​be​ ​too​ ​easy and​ ​that​ ​would​ ​not​ ​prepare​ ​us​ ​for​ ​the​ ​real​ ​life.​ ​That​ ​wouldn’t​ ​give​ ​young​ ​people​ ​the experience​ ​and​ ​knowledge​ ​they​ ​learnt​ ​from​ ​high​ ​school​ ​to​ ​help​ ​in​ ​their​ ​future.
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“Being​ ​stressed​ ​can​ ​also​ ​make​ ​you​ ​get​ ​symptoms​ ​of​ ​depression​ ​and​ ​self-doubt,” said​ ​Chukwuyem.​ ​Sometimes,​ ​being​ ​over-stressed​ ​to​ ​shut​ ​down.​ ​Students​ ​start​ ​to​ ​doubt themselves​ ​because​ ​they​ ​think​ ​they ​cannot​ ​do​ ​anything​ ​all​ ​by​ ​themselves; ​this can create stress.​ ​Stress​ ​is​ ​very​ ​common​ ​for​ ​teenagers.​ ​Most​ ​students​ ​overthink and​ ​overwork​ ​themselves​ ​just​ ​because​ ​they​ ​are​ ​under​ ​stress.
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​According​ ​to​ ​the​ ​HAAS​ ​Wellness​ ​Center,​ ​stress​ ​has​ ​been​ ​called​ ​“the​ ​silent​ ​killer.” Stress​ ​is​ ​a​ ​really​ ​unhealthy​ ​factor​ ​in​ ​an​ ​individual’s​ ​life.​ ​Being​ ​over-stressed​ ​can​ ​cause heart​ ​disease,​ ​high​ ​blood​ ​pressure,​ ​chest​ ​pains,​ ​an​ ​irregular​ ​heartbeat,​ ​migraines​ ​and many​ ​other​ ​diseases.

​“In​ ​the​ ​media,​ ​there​ ​are​ ​higher​ ​rates​ ​of​ ​depression​ ​and​ ​anxiety in​ ​teens​ ​today​ ​than​ ​there​ ​were​ ​five​ ​to​ ​ten​ ​years​ ​ago.​ ​Research​ ​shows​ ​that​ ​that​ ​is​ ​a problem,”​ ​said​ ​Marchell​ ​Goins,​ ​a​ ​counselor​ ​in​ ​HEHS.​ ​Stress​ ​can​ ​cause​ ​depression. Some​ ​signs​ ​or​ ​symptoms​ ​are ​tiredness and low​ ​energy.​ ​It​ ​will​ ​show​ ​in​ ​the​ ​student’s social​ ​life,​ ​academic​ ​performance,​ ​and​ ​physical​ ​well-being.

​“There​ ​is​ ​pressure​ ​to​ ​achieve,​ ​to​ ​perform,​ ​to​ ​get​ ​straight​ ​A’s,​ ​or to​ ​take​ ​AP​ ​classes. Stress​ ​is​ ​mostly​ ​academic-​related​ ​and​ ​some​ ​students​ ​do​ ​not​ ​have​ ​healthy​ ​coping skills​ ​when​ ​being​ ​under​ ​stress,”​ ​said​ ​Goins.​ ​Students​ ​can​ ​find​ ​other​ ​ways​ ​to​ ​not​ ​be under​ ​stress​ ​like​ ​talking​ ​to​ ​their​ ​school​ ​counselors,​ ​avoiding​ ​caffeine,​ ​relaxation techniques,​ ​time​ ​management​ ​and​ ​so​ ​on.​ ​​ ​This​ ​can​ ​help​ ​students​ ​release​ ​the​ ​negative energy​ ​that​ ​they​ ​carry​ ​around​; this can help​ ​them​ ​not​ ​to​ ​be​ ​in​ ​a​ ​lot​ ​of​ ​stress​ ​and​ ​it​ ​can​ ​also can​ ​help​ ​them​ ​mentally​ ​and​ ​help​ ​their​ ​well-being.​ ​​ ​​ ​​ ​​ ​​

“The​ ​irony​ ​is​ ​that ​the​ ​number​ ​one​ ​cause​ ​of​ ​stress​ ​in​ ​students​ ​is​ ​school​ ​work.​ ​It​ ​is not​ ​that​ ​most​ ​students​ ​do​ ​not​ ​want​ ​to​ ​do​ ​their​ ​homework​ ​but​ ​it​ ​just​ ​gets​ ​so overwhelming​ ​because​ ​there​ ​are​ ​due​ ​dates​ ​and​ ​a​ ​lot​ ​of​ ​homework​ ​to​ ​work​ ​on,”​ ​said Chukwuyem.​ ​Student’s​ ​number​ ​one​ ​cause​ ​of​ ​stress​ ​is​ ​also​ ​thinking​ ​about​ ​their​ ​future, colleges​ ​to​ ​go​ ​to,​ ​scholarships​ ​etc.
​ ​​ ​​ ​​ ​​ ​​ ​​ ​​ ​​ ​​ ​​
​“Stress​ ​affects​ ​an​ ​individual​ ​in​ ​different​ ​ways.​ ​The​ ​most​ common ​one​ ​is​ ​people​ ​losing sleep​ ​or​ ​some​ ​individuals​ ​may​ ​not​ ​be​ ​doing​ ​things​ ​they​ ​like​ ​to​ ​do​ ​anymore.​ ​You​ ​isolate yourself​ ​from​ ​the​ ​majority​ ​of​ ​​the​ ​population,”​ ​said​ ​Kazeem​ ​Ogunmodede,​ ​an occupational​ ​therapist​ ​assistant​ ​student.​ ​Stress​ ​can​ ​make​ ​you​ ​become​ ​uninterested​ ​to things​ ​you​ ​used​ ​to​ ​like​ ​doing.​ ​Students​ ​sometimes​ ​over​​think​ ​about​ ​school​-​related things​ ​like​ ​finals,​ ​tests,​ ​quizzes​ ​etc.
​ ​​ ​​ ​​ ​​ ​​ ​​ ​​ ​​ ​​ ​​ ​​
​“Stress​ ​is​ ​a​ ​heavy​ ​burden​ ​that​ ​slows​ ​me​ ​down.​ ​Nowadays,​ ​being​ ​stressed​ ​can make​ ​you​ ​lose​ ​yourself​ ​and​ ​it​ ​blinds​ ​your​ ​thoughts,”​ ​said​ ​Ogunmodede.​ ​Being​ ​stressed is​ ​very​ ​unhealthy.​ ​A​ ​healthy​ ​choice​ ​for​ ​students​ ​is​ ​to​ ​do​ ​something​ ​that​ ​can​ ​help​ ​relieve stress; students need to ​take​ ​their​ ​minds​ ​off​ ​whatever​ ​they​ ​are​ ​stressing​ ​over.​ ​Stress​ ​can​ ​cause​ ​painful and​ ​unbearable​ ​migraines.​ ​Stress​ ​can​ ​also​ ​cause​ ​asthma,​ ​anxiety,​ ​depression,​ ​obesity and​ ​other​ ​health​ ​problems.
​ ​​ ​​ ​​ ​​ ​​ ​​ ​​ ​​ ​​ ​​ ​​ ​​
​​“I​ ​know​ ​I​ ​am​ ​stressed​ ​when​ ​I​ ​start​ ​to​ ​curse​ ​a​ ​lot​ ​and​ ​feel​ ​irritable,”​ ​said Ogunmodede.​ ​Stress​ ​can​ ​make​ ​you​ ​do​ ​things​ ​that​ ​you​ ​usually​ ​don’t​ ​do​ ​like​ ​cursing people​ ​out​ ​or​ ​just​ ​giving​ ​an​ ​attitude​ ​to​ ​your​ ​friends​ ​which​ ​can​ ​drive​ ​them​ ​away​ ​and make​ ​them​ ​not​ ​want​ ​to​ ​talk​ ​to​ ​you​ ​anymore.
​ ​​ ​​ ​​ ​​ ​​ ​​ ​​ ​​ ​​ ​​ ​​ ​​ ​​ ​​ ​​
“If​ ​the​ ​students​ ​aren’t​ ​managing​ ​stress,​ ​they​ ​do​ ​not​ ​care​ ​anymore​ ​about anything​ ​important,​ ​like​ ​education,​ ​friends,​ ​family​ ​etc.​ ​They​ ​tend​ ​to​ ​shut​ ​down​ ​mentally and​ ​physically​ ​and​ ​always​ ​keep​ ​to​ ​themselves,”​ ​said​ ​Kazeem.​ ​Managing​ ​and​ ​coping with​ ​stress​ ​in​ ​a​ ​healthy​ ​way​ ​is​ ​a​ ​very​ ​important​ ​thing​ ​to​ ​do.​ ​Students​ ​talk​ ​to​ ​their​ ​trusted friend,​ ​or​ ​they​ ​can​ ​go​ ​their​ ​guidance​ ​counselor​ ​to​ ​seek​ ​for​ ​advice​ ​or​ ​just​ ​tell​ ​them​ ​what they​ ​are​ ​stressing​ ​about.

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