Let's Learn to Deal with Stress

The Psychology Foundation of Canada and Pfizer offer Stress Lessons for Canadian Families

KIRKLAND, QC, Sept. 26, 2012 /CNW/ - Families in Canada are stressed out.i  In fact, according to the Psychology Foundation of Canada, families report feeling more stressed now than ever before.

Experts say all that stress could be affecting our health — with an estimated 80 per cent of doctor visits believed to be stress-related.ii Stress can also lead to health problems.iii Stress has been linked to conditions such as depression, obesity, diabetes, arthritis, Alzheimer's, cancer, and heart disease.iv

That's why the Psychology Foundation of Canada and Pfizer Canada have teamed up to create Stress Lessons — a free, downloadable classroom toolkit and parents guide.  Stress Lessons is an innovative, interactive resource that's filled with health information, activities, conversation starters and videos to help teachers and parents introduce helpful stress management strategies to students in grades 4 through 6.  Stress Lessons was developed in consultation with Canadian teachers, psychologists, relaxation specialists and doctors.

Learning About Stress is a Powerful Lesson
"Stress Lessons teaches about the causes of stress, offers helpful breathing exercises and promotes optimism, problem-solving and emotionally resilient thinking," explains Dr. Robin Alter, a family psychologist and author, who consulted on Stress Lessons.  "Families and teachers have an important role to play in helping children learn that they can make choices to minimize and prevent stressful feelings and situations.  And, that's a powerful lesson that even the most nurturing family can benefit from," explains Dr. Alter.

Christine Krahulec, a Verdun-based teacher says Stress Lessons helped her class concentrate and get along better.  "Students were asking me to play the breathing exercise video; they talked to their parents about what they were learning — from learning positive problem solving skills to discovering how and why stress affects your body and emotions.  Overall, the class is concentrating better and is more focused since we started working with Stress Lessons and the students are more self-aware."

Stress Lessons has been available as a classroom resource since early 2012. Starting today, a free Stress Lessons Parents Guide can be viewed and downloaded at morethanmedication.ca.

Canadians Inspired Stress Lessons
"Through our work on the More Than Medication™ initiative over the years, we have learned that stress is an important issue for the health of Canadians," explains Rhonda O'Gallagher, Executive Director, Corporate Communications, Pfizer Canada. "Requests from across the country from teachers and parents inspired us to collaborate with the Psychology Foundation of Canada to create Stress Lessons," says O'Gallagher.

"Stress Lessons reflects Pfizer Canada's belief that to be truly healthy, it takes more than medication," says O'Gallagher.  "It's one of the ways we are helping Canadians live healthier lives and give back to our communities.  Our hope is that by highlighting stress as a major preventative health issue, we can help Canada strive toward making managing stress second nature.  It will take collaboration and focus to ensure the next generation of Canadians have less stress-related health issues over their lifetime."

Stress Lessons and the Psychology Foundation of Canada partnership is all part of Pfizer's More Than Medication™ initiative. More Than Medication™ is devoted to empowering Canadian families to be healthy through community programs, partnerships, and resources.

About the Psychology Foundation of Canada
The Psychology Foundation of Canada is a national registered charity dedicated to supporting parents and strengthening families through a number of initiatives, including educational resources, developing training programs for professionals, and delivering community-based parent education.

About Pfizer in Canada
Pfizer Canada Inc. is the Canadian operation of Pfizer Inc., one of the world's leading biopharmaceutical company.  The company is one of the largest contributors to health research in Canada.  Our diversified health care portfolio includes human and animal biologic and small molecule medicines and vaccines, as well as nutritional products and many of the world's best-known consumer products.

Every day, Pfizer Canada employees work to advance wellness, prevention, treatments and cures that challenge the most feared diseases of our time.  We apply science and our global resources to improve the health and well-being of Canadians at every stage of life.  Our commitment is reflected in everything Pfizer does, from our disease awareness initiatives to our community partnerships, to our belief that it takes more than medication to be truly healthy.  To learn more about Pfizer's More Than Medication™ initiative visit morethanmedication.ca.  To learn more about Pfizer Canada, visit pfizer.ca.

i The Vanier Institute of the Family. Stress: A Family Matter. Fascinating Families. 2012
ii The American Institute of Stress.
iii The Psychology Foundation of Canada. Kids Have Stress Too!
ivMiddlebrooks JS, Audage NC. The Effects of Childhood Stress on Health Across the Lifespan

Image with caption: "Psychology Foundation of Canada and Pfizer Canada have teamed up to create Stress Lessons - a free, downloadable classroom toolkit and parents guide. Courtesy morethanmedication.ca. (CNW Group/PFIZER CANADA INC.)". Image available at: http://photos.newswire.ca/images/download/20120926_C9663_PHOTO_EN_18499.jpg


For further information:

For more information, please contact David Weinstein or Deb Quinn at Strategic Objectives.
Toll free:  1-866-366-7733
E:  davidw@strategicobjectives.com

Julie-Catherine Racine
Pfizer Canada
1-866-9PFIZER (1-866-973-4937)

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