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Last Editorial Review: 11/9/2006
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Stress Q&A by Dr. Stöppler

Is professional help available to help people deal with stress? How do I know when to seek professional help?

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MedicineNet Expert
Dr. Stöppler
  • Is professional help available to help people deal with stress? How do I know when to seek professional help?
  • How do I evaluate my stress?
  • Are women more sensitive to stress than men? Does stress affect men and women differently?
  • How many types of stress are there? Please describe the signs and symptoms of each type.
  • How do I find out if my body is producing too much cortisol? What symptoms would I have, if any?
  • Can stress cause speech problems?
  • Does stress cause cancer? I have always been anxious. Will this increase my risk of cancer?
  • How does stress affect tinnitus?
  • Sometimes I feel so stressed out by work, family, money, and life I feel like I am going to explode. What can I do to keep from snapping?
  • My son has ulcerative colitis. Could stress be responsible for his flare-ups?
  • Can stress cause a yeast infection?
  • Before my wedding, before job interviews, and anytime I have a bit of stress, my arms, wrists, and hands break out in an itchy rash. Can stress cause a rash? How do I prevent this from occurring, and how do I treat it?
  • How does long-term chronic stress affect oral health?
  • How does stress impact sperm motility?
  • What role does stress play in the formation of ulcers?
  • Recently, many blood vessels burst in my eye. I'm pregnant and under a lot of stress. Could stress have caused the blood vessels to burst?
  • I am a 27-year-old female, and I truly feel something is wrong with my memory. I often get very frustrated because I try so hard to remember and I can't. I have to re-read things many times because I can never remember what I've read. Could stress have something to do with this?
  • Is there a connection between stress and canker sores? What can I do to get rid of them and prevent future outbreaks?
  • Does stress cause panic attacks?
  • I've heard that stress may cause high blood pressure, but can it also cause low blood pressure?
  • Can stress cause irregular periods?
  • My cholesterol has gone through the roof since my physical last year! Could stress at work have caused it to spike?
  • Can stress cause a miscarriage?
  • I've been under a prolonged period of stress, which seems to have diminished my sex drive. I recently read that stress can affect hormone levels. What can I do to counteract stress and improve my sex drive?
  • Can stress cause hives? I've been going through a divorce, and I've had hives off and on for a year. How can I figure out what's causing my hives?
  • Does stress cause facial wrinkles?
  • My girlfriend and I have been trying to get pregnant for 10 months. She is very stressed by our lack of success. Will the stress affect our chances?
  • Can stress trigger an outbreak of shingles?
  • Is there a correlation between hair loss and stress?
  • Does stress cause weight gain?
  • My wife is under a lot of stress, and it seems like her asthma attacks are getting worse. Can stress bring on asthma attacks? If so, can a high level of stress increase the severity of the attack?
  • Are self-esteem and stress related? If you have low self-esteem, are you more likely to become stressed?
  • When I'm under stress, I can't seem to get any sleep. How can I learn to sleep even during times of emotional stress?
  • How does the doctor determine if someone should be on medication or whether they should just use stress-relief exercises?
  • What are the long-term effects of stress on the body?

Dr. Melissa Stöppler serves on the Medical Editorial Board of, a WebMD company. In the Ask the Experts sections, Dr. Stöppler hopes to bring you concise and accurate answers to your questions about emotional stress and its effects on health and well-being. The goal of this section is to assist you in understanding and managing stress for improvement of both physical and emotional health.

"We recognize that stress comes in many forms and affects persons of all ages and all walks of life. The manifestations of excess or poorly managed stress can be extremely varied, and many factors, including our physical health, the quality of our interpersonal relationships, the number of commitments and responsibilities we carry, the degree of others' dependence upon and expectations of us, the amount of support we receive from others, and the number of changes or traumatic events that have recently occurred in our lives affect our experience of stress."

Dr. Stöppler knows stress can have adverse physical consequences, and research has shown that high levels of stress are known to exert a negative influence on the immune system and can worsen the symptoms of numerous medical conditions.

In her free time Dr. Stöppler enjoys volunteering at her children's schools, reading, tennis, scuba diving and cooking.


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