In medicine, distress is a situation when a person is unable to completely adapt to stress. As a result, the person shows a set of behaviours which are not adapted to the situation. Very often, the person is aware of the situation, and feels bad about not being able to fully adapt.
People often find ways of dealing with distress, in both negative and positive ways. Examples of positive ways are listening to music, calming exercises, sports and similar healthy distractions. Negative ways can include but are not limited to use of drugs including alcohol, and expression of anger, which are likely to lead to complicated social interactions, thus causing increased distress.