Our Health Library information does not replace the advice of a doctor. Please be advised that this information is made available to assist our patients to learn more about their health. Our providers may not see and/or treat all topics found herein.

Stress response (fight-or-flight response)

The stress response is the set of physical and emotional changes the human body makes in response to a threat or stress. It sometimes is called the "fight-or-flight" response.

In a stressful situation, the body releases chemicals that trigger:

  • Increased heart rate and blood pressure.
  • Rapid breathing.
  • Increased sweating.
  • A sudden rush of strength.
  • Slowed digestion.
  • Dilated pupils.

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