Stress is part of everyday life for most people. But when a chronic illness such as cancer is involved, stress can be an especially disruptive influence on a patient’s daily routine – including sleep patterns.
The next interactive televideo (ITV) presentation at St. Rose Ambulatory & Surgery Center will address these issues.
It is called “Sleep and the Psychology of Stress” and is scheduled for 3 to 4 p.m. Wednesday, April 23 in the basement-level St. Dominic Room.
“All of us experience stress,” said Moira Mulhern, PhD, program presenter. “It can affect physical health, and some chronic illnesses can flare up during long-term or acute stress. This program will address the relationship between stress and sleep.”
Mulhern and the audience will explore how stress levels disrupt the length and quality of sleep; the restorative powers of sleep; why some stressors are more unbearable than others; and three powerful psychological factors that work to regulate the stress response.
“Lack of sleep will cause elevated levels of the hormone cortisol, which can wreak havoc with our physical and emotional health,” Mulhern noted. “This can also cause higher blood sugar levels causing weight gain, insulin resistance, bone mineral loss and muscle protein loss.
“People who face excessive stress show early aging, depression, anxiety, and decline in physical and mental functioning,” she added. “We encourage those with cancer or other chronic illness to attend this session to learn more about stress and sleep.”
The presentation at St. Rose is part of a Midwest Cancer Alliance (MCA) series of health and wellness events for cancer patients. St. Rose is a member of MCA, the outreach arm of The University of Kansas Cancer Center.
Mulhern is co-founder and chief executive officer of Turning Point: the Center for Hope and Healing, which provides speakers for the events.
St. Rose is part of Centura Health, which connects individuals and families across western Kansas and Colorado with more than 6,000 physicians, 15 hospitals, seven senior-living communities, physician practices and clinics, and home-care and hospice services.