The term “stress response syndrome” applies to this condition because the symptoms arise from normal stress responses. However, in people with the disorder, these reactions are more intense than they should be. The stress response begins when a person recognizes a possible threat, which can be a physical danger, such as an oncoming car, or more intangible, like a looming deadline. When a stressful event occurs, the amygdala in the brain sends a distress signal to the hypothalamus, which triggers the adrenal glands to pump adrenaline into the bloodstream. This begins the many physical reactions that are part of the stress response.
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