Acute Stress


The acute stress response is immediate.

It’s intense.

Even in certain circumstances, it can be thrilling as you experience an immediate rush of adrenalin.

You will recall this feeling from a previous situation that sparked fear in your life such as jumping out of a plane on your first skydiving experience.

Okay... I haven't done that either but I've heard it's quite the rush experience!

acute stress fight or flight response

Acute stress is one of the most well known types of stress. This type of stress activates what has been termed your “flight-or-fight response.” This is your bodies reaction to stress which is a threat, challenge, or scare. It's a reflex that signals to your body that you may be entering a threatening situation. Your body then automatically changes its chemistry to prepare to defend itself or flee from danger.

Your bodies reaction to stress may ignite increased blood pressure and heart rate, sweaty palms, shaking, nausea, shortness of breath, and other possible symptoms. Almost everyone has experienced the feeling.

acute stress quick response
For instance, you are driving along and another vehicle all of a sudden hits his brakes in front of you.

You have to react fast.

This causes a jolt of energy due to the sudden increase of instantaneous fear.

When this happens, your body signals your hormones for help.

You clutch the steering wheel with a tight grip and at the same time your foot slams on your brakes and you come to a screeching halt. Your heart is beating fast, your breathing has increased, your hands are shaking, and an overwhelming feeling of fear surrounds your being.

Yup - Been There!!


After you acknowledge that the immediate threat has passed and you are safe, your body should begin to self-regulate, decreasing the hormone level so your body’s responses can reverse themselves and return to their normal functioning.

Since we can't prepare for or expect the unexpected there is no way to avoid this type of stress. Your bodies reaction to stress is a natural reaction to self preservation and is a beneficial type of stress. This stress requires no treatment or medications to alleviate its effects.

The mind progresses in the direction of our currently dominant thoughts

~Earl Nightingale~

Acute Stress as a Disorder is caused by a very traumatic experience and the effects are much more dramatic and long-lasting.

Use Stress Breathing Techniques to Battle Stress and regain control. Deep breaths will help to increase oxygen flow and relax the body.

Stress and how it Affects your Energy

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Other Related Links

  • articles on relaxation
  • depression
  • The difference between acute and chronic stress
  • Techniques to relieve acute stress symptoms
  • Retun to homepage to search for any topic
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