Detecting it is essential to avoid serious health problems.
Catching traffic jams every morning, staying late at work out of habit, getting home and not having time for your family are everyday experiences that cause our levels of stress and anxiety to soar. They can also plunge you into sadness. And, stuck in that routine vortex, you may end up suffering a serious rise in blood pressure, depression, diabetes and obesity. The good news is that these are problems that are easy to detect and have a solution. The first step is to do a simple test, like the one available on the website of the Ministry of Health.
In the case of stress, it is a 14-question test prepared by the Spanish Society for the Study of Anxiety and Stress, which assesses how you react to certain stressful situations, as well as the frequency or intensity with which you experience a set of symptoms. The result is obtained using the Perceived Stress Scale. If you have more than 23 points, you have had a high level of stress in the last month. If the score is 34 or higher, the level is very high.
To find out your anxiety levels, you should answer 12 questions about how often you have had certain cognitive, physiological and motor symptoms. If the sum of your results is 16 or higher (for men), or 19 or higher (for women), the Ministry recommends seeking a professional for a more thorough evaluation.
The sadness test consists of 15 questions and will give you several results related to different emotions: sadness, mood, anger, anxiety, fatigue and the General Index of Emotional Disturbance (the sum of some of the previous ones). The Ministry provides a table with the different scores for which these feelings are considered to be high or very high.