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Sweating your way out of stress

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07:00 CET+01:00
Everyone feels stressed from time to time, but how do you measure whether the problem is taking over your life? Researchers at the Swedish Institute of Computer Science (SICS) think they have the answer.

A team of scientists at the Stockholm-based institute has developed an armband to measure symptoms of stress including heart rhythm, body temperature, sweating and movement. It is hoped that the armband will help people understand why they are stressed.

"Feelings are rooted in the body - by seeing how the body reacts in various situations, a person can start to see a pattern," said Anna Ståhl, researcher at SICS.

The aim of the research is to give therapists a tool for helping patients suffering from stress. Data from the sensors is saved and can be used as a basis for therapy sessions.

Ståhl says it is not intended for the armband to be connected to an alarm that warns people when they are too stressed. She says this would be more likely just to generate further anxiety.

"The intention is that people who use it will draw their own conclusions and sound their own alarms," she says.

Ola Jacobsen

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