The word stress describes a range of feelings. It often comes from being under too much mental or emotional pressure, causing you to feel unable to cope. Some people find a certain level of stress is helpful to motivate them. Some find it makes them feel overwhelmed, anxious, irritable, helpless or low in self-esteem. Physically you may suffer with headaches, sleep problems, muscle tension and more. If untreated, stress can trigger depression and serious illness. Some people try to cope by self-medicating with alcohol, smoking or drugs. Mental health issues including stress, anxiety and depression are the reason for one-in-five visits to a GP, and GPs often suggest counselling as a way to bring down stress levels.