Stress & Burnout


Stress and burnout

In times of continuous stress, the levels of Cortisol - our stress hormone - are always raised. These tests identify when Cortisol levels throughout the day.

Cortisol, stress and health

Stress and burnout have become prevalent concerns in our fast-paced modern society, affecting individuals across various demographics and professions. One of the key physiological systems affected by chronic stress is the adrenal gland, which plays a crucial role in the body's stress response. The analysis of stress hormones from saliva is crucial for the diagnosis and treatment of stress-related diseases.

Stress diagnostics are valuable for a variety of conditions, including sleep disorders, mental disorders, gastrointestinal disorders, pain, cardiovascular disease, allergies, obesity, metabolic syndrome, infertility and PMS. Cortisol, the primary stress hormone, is central to these diagnoses. It has a circadian rhythm with a maximum in the morning and a minimum at night. Cortisol affects carbohydrate (blood sugar balance) metabolism, protein breakdown and fat metabolism, and has anti-inflammatory and immunosuppressive effects.

Stress, whether physical or psychological, can have a lasting effect on overall wellbeing. Long-term stress can lead to over-activation of the hypothalamic-pituitary-adrenal axis and permanent hormonal stress. Chronic stress is associated with a range of conditions, including chronic pain, Fibromyalgia, atopic diseases, irritable bowel syndrome, peptic ulcer, ulcerative colitis, cardiovascular problems and sexual dysfunction. Elevated cortisol levels are associated with obesity, cardiovascular disease and cognitive decline.

There is also a link between stress, cortisol levels and immune function. The immunosuppressive effects of cortisol increase the risk of infection and may contribute to the development of tumours. In addition, high levels of cortisol have been linked to neurodegeneration which can lead to reduced memory function and far ranging conditions such as Alzheimer's. Recent studies have also highlighted the role of cortisol deficiency (hypocortisolism) in stress-related conditions, leading to pain disorders and increased inflammation.

DHEA (dehydroepiandrosterone), a precursor of sex hormones, plays a crucial role in stress resistance and protection against age-related diseases. The cortisol/DHEA ratio is considered a measure of the ageing process, with lower DHEA levels associated with various age-related conditions. Maintaining good DHEA may improve individual stress resistance and provide protection against age-related diseases.

Identifying the impact of stress and burnout on adrenal hormone levels is essential for developing effective strategies to reduce the negative effects on adrenal health and regain optimal adrenal function and promote overall resilience in the face of life's challenges.

We can test for the following markers in a saliva sample: Cortisol, DHEA, Melatonin, Progesterone, Testosterone, Estradiol and Estriol. You can read more detailed information on each of these hormones in our A-Z.


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