If nothing you’ve tried helps, it’s time to bring in the experts

Stress is pervasive in American society. In fact, stress levels have increased this year for the first time in a decade, according to a survey by the American Psychological Association.

All that tension isn’t just unpleasant—it’s unhealthy. “There’s evidence that people under chronic stress are more susceptible to the common cold and flu, and are at greater risk of developing depression and coronary heart disease,” says Sheldon Cohen, Ph.D., a professor of psychology at Carnegie Mellon University in Pittsburgh. “Under long-term stress, many of your body’s physical systems do not respond normally.”

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