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Can you be admitted to hospital for stress: Causes, Symptoms, Effects & Management

Stress landed me in the hospital. The prescription was my first ‘me-cation’.

One Small Thing

After a devastating divorce and both parents dying within a year, I’ve learned that a vacation away from work and the kids is powerful medicine.

Kathleen Kenehan on a hike in the desert in Arizona.Courtesy Kathleen Kenehan

By Kathleen Kenehan

A recent divorce. The death of both parents in 3 months. A firstborn child heading off to her first year of college. A family pet dying.

I had dealt with all four of these life-altering situations over the past year and, coupled with me running a thriving business and single parenting five children, my stressful life had finally caught up with me. After dropping off my daughter Emily at college, my 47-year-old heart wasn’t feeling right. And, I don’t mean I felt heartbroken from missing her (which I did). I actually had some nagging chest pain and other symptoms that I kept putting off due to my hectic pace. With a family history of heart disease, I knew stress could be a factor in causing some valid cardiac concerns. After an unexpected ER visit and an overnight stay at the hospital to double check that running on emotional and physical “empty” hadn’t caused me actual lasting damage (which thankfully it didn’t), my trusted family doctor prescribed me something: some much-needed and ongoing self-care.

An offer I couldn’t refuse

Concerned about the compounding ramifications of my past few years of grief, a longtime client of mine presented a very generous offer. They booked a trip for me to get away from my busy agency and five kids over a long weekend. The condition? I needed to rest and recover for four days alone. The pragmatic side of me had avoided such luxuries of late because I have a second child beginning college next fall and self-care of this magnitude seemed frivolous to a working single mother. However, this kind gift and unusual opportunity was one that came at the most perfect time for me and I seized the moment. My kids were all in full support and some wonderful friends were more than happy to ensure my children were well cared for during my retreat.

I packed 12 self-help books (that I wanted to read but never could in my “real” life), several swimsuits, some work out attire and definitely no makeup or stilettos and began my mini self-discovery trip.

Upon landing in Scottsdale, Arizona, I headed to a place called Sanctuary at Camelback Mountain. I was immediately transfixed by the hot dry air, the bright blue skies, cacti and vivid florals in every direction. I immediately felt myself exhaling for probably the first time in three long years of loss. In reflecting back about that first day, I had some anxiety and trepidation about my ability to just completely turn my brain off. Could I possibly like being by myself? In my entire life, I had never traveled for pleasure or self-care alone. I always had a spouse or children tagging along so this was quite foreign to me. The first night I was alone, I got a bit panicky. I texted a close girlfriend and told her I wasn’t sure I was cut out for solo vacationing. Her advice? She asked me what I would have been doing anyway that night if I’d been back at home in Chicago. I answered: likely watching a show on Netflix or reading. So, she said, get over myself and do it there. And that’s just what I did. I embraced her candidness and took a bath and watched TV in the tub and smiled. Maybe this wasn’t half bad?


Coming back to life

Over the next several days, I began to notice myself coming to life again in a way I hadn’t in a long, long time. I started just being very grateful to be in a quiet, beautiful place. I ate delicious healthy breakfasts each day. I embraced (and somewhat feared) hiking up a mountain with a guide who kept me from falling over the edge and well-hydrated in the 100-degree heat. I read four (yes four!) books during the trip. I tried an aerial yoga class that sounded fun and different to me (let’s just say P!NK does it better than I do!). I meditated and prayed. I became my own favorite companion. It was incredibly freeing and just what I needed after my losses and busy life.


As I was flying home, I began to create a list on my iPhone (I’m still type A when relaxed) and began to make personal commitments to myself. I would get more rest, I would exercise more, I would eat healthier foods. So what was top of the list, you ask? I would invest in myself and always plan to take a me-cation each year. I found that after my inaugural trip, I was more relaxed, reflective and inspired which has helped me immensely.

A ‘me-cation’ with lasting effects

In fact, in the month or two since returning, I have found myself being so much more peaceful and balanced in work and life. I have also had a renewed energy and joy about me that others are noticing both in photos and when they see me out and about. Considering a solo trip? I’d like to offer the following tips to anyone who has experienced loss, deals with anxiety or just has a stressful life like me:

  • Don’t feel guilty. Of course my first reaction to the suggestion of my trip to Arizona was to say a firm no due to my responsibilities to my children and my employees. Guess what? Everyone was not only happy to help but admitted I needed to go. That gave me the self-permission to accept a blessing and just go enjoy myself.
  • Document the journey. I promised myself I wouldn’t look at email or do any calls during my “me-cation” and I kept that promise. However, I did take tons of shots of beauty that I saw all around me. I have found myself looking back on those photos often since and it centers me and reminds me of why it was such a good idea to go in the first place. Document your trip in some way by journaling or photography so you can reflect later.
  • Make a commitment to do it again. It had never occurred to me that I needed this trip so badly until I went. Now, I will always commit to better self-care and self-discovery to help me continue to evolve and become a “better version of me,” as one dear friend of mine likes to say. I also think it’s really good role modeling for my children to see the importance of self-care and nurturing for their future, likely stressful, lives.

I’ve continued to be busier than ever at work and my every-minute-of-the-day job as a mom of five wonderful kids. My kids weren’t sorry I went. My team felt thankful that I was more focused and happier than I was before I left. Ultimately, I feel more connected to myself and God than ever before because I took time to feed my mind, body and soul. Don’t wait until you are in the hospital to recognize you need to love yourself first before you can love others. Travel agents are standing by.


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Want more tips like these? NBC News BETTER is obsessed with finding easier, healthier and smarter ways to live. Sign up for our newsletter and follow us on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.

Kathleen Kenehan

Kathleen Kenehan Henson is a contributor to NBC News BETTER and the founder and CEO of Agency H5, an award-winning public relations and integrated marketing firm based in Chicago. 

When Stress Becomes a Medical Concern

November 22, 2016

— Health & Safety Tips

Did you know that to a certain extent, stress is actually helpful to every single one of us?

Stress is a normal part of life. Simply put, stress is our body’s reaction to a challenge or a demand. It serves as a signal for us to react and respond appropriately, and make adjustments in relation to our environment.

Stress, in short bursts, can help one to meet a deadline, or avoid danger. However, when stress occurs over a prolonged period of time, it can be harmful.

Excessive stress that is constant and persistent for long periods is called chronic stress. When left untreated, it may cause a wide range of debilitating psychological and physical effects.

Unlike acute stress (which is stress in short bursts), chronic stress is more difficult to manage with typical stress management techniques.

Stress becomes a medical concern if it is already beginning to affect a person’s function and way of life. If stress renders one incapable of working or functioning at home because of the recurrence of physical symptoms even in the absence of the stressor, it is best to immediately seek medical help from professionals. Examples of these physical symptoms include feelings of dizziness, rapid breathing, or racing heartbeat.

Stress also becomes a medical concern if it is beginning to contribute to the development or exacerbation of already existing illnesses such as heart diseases and depression. It likewise becomes a medical concern if it is starting to bring forth symptoms such as anxiety, insomnia, muscle pain, edema, high blood pressure, and a very weak immune system. These are considered to be symptoms of an underlying serious health condition.

Other than physical illnesses, stress can also give rise to psychological illnesses such as anxiety, depression, and panic, which are all valid medical concerns. Especially if the depression, anxiety, or panic attack is accompanied by suicidal thoughts, it is automatically considered as a medical emergency.

If you’re looking for an emergency facility within the Corpus Christi area, consider Physicians Premier. Physicians Premier is your 24-hour emergency care center in Corpus Christi, TX. This Corpus Christi ER is able to cater to all kinds of emergencies, whether major or minor.

Physicians Premier ER has a state-wide presence. To know the specific locations of each Physicians Premier immediate care center, visit: https://mdpremier.com/locations/. For more information about Physicians Premier, you may also visit https://mdpremier.com/contact-us/.

Other Locations:

  • Saratoga Emergency Room
  • Staples Corpus Christi Emergency Room
  • Ennis Joslin South Padre Island Emergency Room
  • Portland Texas Emergency Room
  • Calallen Texas Emergency Room

Saratoga Emergency Room

Department of Neurology. Hospitalization in a neurological hospital

The nervous system is one of the most complex in the human body, affecting the work of almost all organs and systems. Therefore, it is so important to recognize the violation in time, often timely treatment can prevent the development of serious consequences.

Hereditary predisposition, injuries, infections, cerebrovascular accident, tumors, degenerative processes – the causes of neurological disorders are quite numerous and varied. With some diseases, the condition deteriorates rapidly, and the help of an experienced neurologist is the only way to maintain health. The neurological department provides assistance to patients with various disorders that have arisen acutely or disturbing a person for a long time – both on weekdays and on weekends or holidays – around the clock! Our neurologists have at their disposal modern methods of diagnostics, treatment and rehabilitation in accordance with European standards.

What symptoms should I see a neurologist for?

A neurologist cares for patients with many and varied disorders, which may include:

  • pain: headache, in the back, neck, limbs, possibly radiating to another part of the body;
  • decreased sensation in any area, tingling;
  • blurred vision, flies, fog, hearing, smell, taste, speech disorders;
  • weakness, change in muscle tone, atrophy;
  • unsteadiness of gait, incoordination, tremor, convulsions, tic, paralysis, paresis;
  • dizziness, tinnitus;
  • loss of consciousness;
  • sleep problems, memory impairment, inability to concentrate or remember new information.


Symptoms of neurological diseases are very diverse, our specialists are able to differentiate a condition caused by overwork, stress, etc. from a serious disease requiring complex treatment. Examination is possible in the shortest possible time, at the disposal of our patients, in addition to general clinical tests, the entire range of diagnostics:

  • X-ray examinations, including angiography;
  • Computed (CT), magnetic resonance (MRI) and positron emission tomography;
  • Electroencephalography;
  • Electroneuromyography;
  • Ultrasound examinations, including neurosonography and duplex scanning
  • Lumbar puncture;
  • Immunological studies and genetic profiling
  • Cognitive research, etc.


When providing assistance in the clinic, the most effective methods are used, which are actively practiced in the best European clinics. In the treatment, we use only proven drugs that have been certified. Depending on the patient’s condition, there is the possibility of treatment at a day hospital.

When surgical treatment is required, patients can count on the help of qualified and experienced neurosurgeons; Our operating theaters are equipped with state-of-the-art, expert-class equipment. For us, there are no identical patients, for each person – only an individual approach!

Rehabilitation of neurological patients

For patients with neurological diseases, we offer a full range of activities that will help to fully or partially restore the functions lost during the illness. At the service of patients:

  • physiotherapy exercises,
  • physiotherapy,
  • reflexology,
  • massage,
  • mechanotherapy (use of special simulators)
  • occupational therapy, etc.

For some pathologies that today cannot be completely cured, for example, for Parkinson’s or Alzheimer’s diseases, rehabilitation will help slow down the progression of the disease, stabilize and even improve the patient’s condition. Thanks to the rehabilitation program, such patients are better integrated into society, which helps to maintain their peace of mind for a long time.

Hospitalization in a neurological hospital

Our clinic provides a full range of medical services to patients with neurological disorders of varying severity and nature: with involvement in the process of peripheral nerves (sciatica, neuritis, etc.), with intervertebral hernia, with pathologies of the spinal cord (myelitis), with stroke and its complications. Patients with progressive damage to the nervous system – multiple sclerosis, hereditary diseases – syringomyelia and other diseases can also count on the help of specialists.

The clinic has comfortable single and double rooms, equipped recreation areas, individual meals three times a day are possible – everything is aimed at the comfort of patients. Round-the-clock monitoring of the patient’s health status is carried out, and, if desired, individual assistance from a nurse or a nurse’s post.

Fear and fear. How to cope. Neurologist’s advice

At any time, stress has always been in the life of every person. In moderation, their presence is even beneficial. But what if the stress in our lives goes off scale?

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What to do in such situations? There are effective ways to improve your condition. Here are some of them.

1. Mental hygiene .
Limit yourself, at least partially, from the flow of information, especially negative and unreliable. Minimize the time you spend in front of the TV screen, computer monitor, with gadgets. Try to communicate less with people who are fixed only on the negative, have a pessimistic attitude.

2. Increase physical activity .
Go in for sports, walk a lot. Choose the type of physical activity that you enjoy. Exercise regularly, preferably daily, for at least 20-30 minutes. Be sure to include aerobic exercise in the complex of exercises: brisk walking, running, squats, jumping, cycling, walking up the stairs. Neurotransmitters released during exercise have been shown to significantly reduce anxiety.

3. Drink enough water
Dehydration impairs brain function, increases anxiety. Drink regularly even before you feel thirsty. thirst indicates that the body is already in a state of dehydration.

4. Get enough sleep .
Lack of sleep negatively affects the brain: anxiety levels increase, irritability occurs, mental abilities and mood decrease, and depression can begin. In order to effectively deal with stress, you definitely need to get enough sleep.

5. Normalize power mode .
Try to eat as varied as possible, choose more healthy products that have undergone minimal industrial processing. Increase the amount of vegetables and fruits in your diet, preferably raw. Eat enough protein daily, as stress increases its consumption. Reduce the amount of sugar and “fast” carbohydrates, as well as coffee and strong tea. Eat plenty of dairy products. It is desirable to completely exclude alcohol intake.

6. Distract for any classes .
Take on any routine household chores: laundry, cleaning, putting things in order in the house. Do what you usually don’t have enough time for: sort out in the pantry, on the balcony, put things in order in the cabinets, get rid of the old, unnecessary. Listen to music, watch movies, do needlework, learn a foreign language.

7. Breathing exercises .
Learn the breathing exercises. There are a large number of them, and they are good at helping to relax in a state of severe stress. Elderly people, as well as people with diseases of the cardiovascular system, are advised to consult their doctor before starting breathing exercises.
a) Belly breathing. Better lying down, you can sit. Put one hand on the upper abdomen to make it easier to follow the movements of the abdominal wall. As you inhale, inflate your belly as much as possible. As you exhale, draw your stomach in as much as possible. Take slow breaths in and out. Continue for 1-2 minutes, gradually increase the duration to 5-10 minutes.
b) Breathing to the count of 4-7-8. Slow breath in through the nose for a count of 4 (1-2-3-4). Hold your breath for a count of 7 (1-2-3-4-5-6-7). Exhale through your mouth for a count of 8 (1-2-3-4-5-6-7-8). Repeat 4 times. Gradually, you can increase up to 8 times.

8. Support and help .
Support loved ones morally and do not refuse support yourself. Communicate more, share your feelings with others. Help those who are worse off than you. Do charity work. It can be not only material, financial assistance. It is enough to listen, give advice, reassure, share useful information. Helping others, we help ourselves even more, because. we begin to feel stronger.

9. Please yourself .
During the day, find opportunities for activities that you really enjoy. Throw out emotions. If you want, get creative: draw, sing, play a musical instrument, write poetry or prose, embroider. Incorporate outdoor activities into your schedule whenever possible.

10. Daily stability .
Do your daily routine every day. Set up daily rituals and stick to them. This will add stability.

11. State here and now “.
Try to solve only pressing problems. In times of uncertainty, live in the present moment, “here and now.” Try to notice any positive moments in your life, even the smallest ones. For example, a sunny day, a delicious breakfast, a good movie, a call from a friend, etc. ; the list is endless.

There is good news! Stress, paradoxically, plays a positive role in our lives. After solving the problem, we become stronger, more experienced, more resilient, self-confidence increases. Stress motivates us to build relationships with others, focus on solving problems, and achieve our goals.

However, there are situations when a person cannot cope with stress on his own.

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