University of Illinois Extension

HOT Project: Healthy Outcomes for Teens

What Is Stress?

Stress is a physical, mental, or even emotional reaction caused by the demanding events in your life.

Think about an alarm system. If the alarm system senses a threat, that alarm system will react with high pitched sounds and maybe even flashing red lights! Let’s adapt this idea to our own bodies. You have your own alarm system in your body that protects you. If your brain senses a threat, hormones are released to give you enough energy to either run away from the threat or confront it. After the threat is gone, your body goes back to normal.

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