Stress - Depression
Therapeutic exercise programs

Stress - Depression and Exercise

Stress is a very common disorder in modern people. It is usually a transient normal reaction to external pressure (stress) that exists daily for a variety of reasons (interpersonal relationships, profession, financial problems, raising children, etc.).

Type A personality individuals are more prone to the manifestation of stress.

Rarely, this disorder is either due to endogenous stress, such as hypochondria (e.g. unreasonable fear of possible illness), or is an initial symptom of a more serious psychiatric condition (e.g. depression) or due to craniocerebral damage.

Sometimes stress is a continuous procedure, which is accompanied by anxiety, fear, panic symptoms or symptoms due to increased activity of the sympathetic nervous system, such as tachycardia, pseudo-dyspnea, insomnia, anorexia, weight loss, sweating, digestive disorders, etc. Stress is a risk factor for coronary heart disease, hypertension, and other health disorders.

Generally, no special psychiatric treatment is required to suppress stress.

Sometimes, however, psychological support and/or the administration of psychotropic drugs are necessary.

Depression is defined as a wide range of emotional states, both normal and abnormal. Thus, it may be a normal emotion following an unpleasant event, a symptomatology as a reaction to a stressful situation or illness, or a psychopathological disorder. This form (Major Depressive Disorder, Dysthymic Disorder or Bipolar Disorder) is quite common nowadays and needs to be treated.

The possible mechanisms that mediate the favorable effects of exercise are described below.

  • According to the theory of thermogenesis, an increase in body temperature during exercise leads to an increase in temperature of certain areas of the brain. This action leads to a reduction of muscle tension and enhances the feeling of relaxation, events that lead to the treatment of stress favorably.
  • According to the theory of endorphins, physical activity and especially the endurance pathway leads to increased secretion of endorphins in the brain, which has a beneficial effect in the treatment of depression.
  • According to the theory of monoamines, exercise leads to increased secretion of neurotransmitters in the brain, such as dopamine, serotonin and noradrenaline. Higher levels of these neurohormones have beneficial effects in the treatment of depression.

The types of physical activity that are mainly recommended for the treatment of psychological disorders are <ul>swimming, jogging, running, dancing, etc., especially with the participation of friendly people</mark>, while competing contact sports could instead lead to additional problems.