Unfortunately, stress can take a toll on your body in more ways than one. Let’s be honest. Stress is an unavoidable part of day-to-day life. Everyone feels stressed out from time to time. But what happens to your body when stress becomes too much? It’s important to take care of ourselves and be aware of what our bodies are trying to tell us. Let’s have a look at things that can happen to the body when you’re overstressed.
1. Increased heart rate
Stress puts your body into “fight or flight” mode, which means the heart rate increases as it prepares you for some form of danger. This often leads to physical symptoms such as chest tightness and even breathlessness.
2. Change in blood pressure
When stressed, your body releases adrenaline and cortisol hormones, increasing blood pressure.
3. Sleep issues
Stress can make it hard to sleep at night. You might have trouble falling asleep, or you might wake up early. This can happen because you are worried at night. When this happens, it is hard to get a good night’s sleep every night.
4. Muscle tension and pain
Stress can cause muscle tension which can lead to aches and pains throughout the body, especially in the neck, shoulders, and lower back region.
5. Digestive problems
Stomach aches, indigestion, nausea, constipation—all of these are potential signs of stress-related digestive problems. If you’re experiencing any of these symptoms on a regular basis, you may want to consult with a doctor or look into managing your stress levels better.
6. Weakened immune system
Prolonged periods of stress weaken the immune system by reducing its ability to fight off illnesses like colds or infections more quickly than usual. This leaves you more vulnerable to getting sick frequently than someone whose stress levels are managed well.
7. Mood swings
Extreme stress can cause mood swings that will take a toll on both your mental and emotional stability resulting in irritability, anger, sadness, or depression, among other emotions if left unchecked over time.
8. Mental fog and difficulty concentrating
When we’re under too much stress, we may experience difficulty focusing on tasks, become easily overwhelmed by our thoughts, or forget details quickly after reading them just moments before.
9. Loss of Appetite
When stressed out, some people may lose their appetite due to anxiety or a feeling of not being able to properly enjoy meals which can result in unhealthy weight loss or gain if not monitored closely enough for long periods of time.
How to reduce stress
Here are a few tips to help reduce stress:
- Take regular breaks throughout the day – it’s important to give yourself time off from work or studying and do something you enjoy, whether that means going for a short walk, listening to music, or spending time with friends.
- Establish healthy routines – creating structure in your daily life can help manage stress levels. Start off by organizing and planning your days, breaking up tasks into manageable chunks, and having a consistent sleep schedule.
- Get active – exercise has been proven to be one of the best ways to reduce tension and increase relaxation. Even just 10 minutes of physical activity can make a difference in how much stress you’re feeling.
- Practice mindfulness and meditation – dedicate time each day to relax your mind and focus on being in the present moment instead of worrying about the future or ruminating on the past. If you’re new to meditation, there are plenty of apps designed.
- Get enough sleep – Getting plenty of restful sleep can make it easier for you to handle stressful situations.
- Reach out for help if needed – don’t try to deal with stressful situations alone- reach out to family members, friends, or professionals if you need additional support in managing your stress levels and other emotions.