Dial down your holiday stress

November 22nd, 2012 in Health /
Dial down your holiday stress
Start by setting realistic expectations, experts advise.


Start by setting realistic expectations, experts advise.

(HealthDay)—From crowded shopping malls to unpaid bills to an onslaught of out-of-town guests, the holidays can cause overwhelming stress. One way to remain calm is to manage unrealistic expectations, experts advise.

"Overly high expectations for the —be it around the food, the gifts or the —can trigger anxiety and even depression," said Dr. Mallay Occhiogrosso, a psychiatrist at the Payne Whitney Clinic at NewYork-Presbyterian Hospital/Weill Cornell Medical Center in New York City, in a medical center news release. "Prioritizing self-care is important, as well as dialing down those unrealistic 'Hallmark holiday' fantasies."

Another expert agrees: "During the holidays, our lives become even more stressful as we try to juggle our usual responsibilities with extra holiday preparation and complicated ," said Dr. Maria Oquendo, a psychiatrist at NewYork-Presbyterian Hospital/Columbia University Medical Center.

The experts noted there are several other ways to avoid stress during the holidays, including:

Anyone who still feels depressed during the holidays should consider talking to a mental-health professional, the experts noted.

More information: The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention provides more holiday health tips.

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"Dial down your holiday stress." November 22nd, 2012. http://medicalxpress.com/news/2012-11-dial-holiday-stress.html