Stress is the number one proxy killer today. However, a lot of people are not even aware of the physical effects of stress. Once you understand the mechanism of how stress works on your body, you would think a hundred times before you become prey to its possession. In this article, you will learn all about the psychological and physical effects of stress so that you can start planning a calmer, stress-free life.
What Are the Physical Effects Of Stress?
Many people justify being stressed all the time based on being stressed “just a little bit.” They couldn’t be more wrong because your body reacts to stress, whether it is “big” or “small,” in the same manner. Among the scariest physical effects of stress are:
- Chronic Fatigue: This results in the infamous teeth grinding (bruxism) and tension in the jaw.
- Muscle tension and pain.
- Chest pain: This is among the scariest physical effects of stress. Chest pain could result from strokes, hypertension, increased heart rate, heart disease, and arrhythmia.
- Sleep disorders like sleep deprivation, night terrors, insomnia, and nightmares.
- Digestive disorders include indigestion, irritable bowel syndrome (IBS), an upset stomach all the time, abdominal pain, and heartburn.
- Headaches (one of the most common physical effects of stress).
- Weight Gain and Obesity (due to overeating to compensate for increased cortisol hormone production).
- Decreased sexual drive.
- Difficulty swallowing and a lump in your throat.
- Playing with your hair might lead to compulsive hair pulling in some extreme cases.
- Sweaty palms and hyperventilating.
- The decreased energy level and an overall grim mood.
- Compromised immune system: This could be directly or indirectly. When you are stressed, your body releases the stress hormone cortisol, which lowers the numbers of antigens in your immune system and thus decreases its ability to fight off diseases. In a more twisted form of immunocompromised behavior, when you are stressed, you seek ways to minimize your stress. Most of the methods are unhealthy such as consuming junk food, alcoholism, and smoking. In the long run, these habits would have a detrimental effect on your immune system.
What Are The Psychological Effects Of Stress?
Psychologically, stress affects your personality, causing what scientists call “cortical inhibition. “ This means that a part of your brain stops functioning properly. Even if you are the smartest person in the world, stress could lead you to make hesitant, irrational decisions and say things that you might regret in the end. Physical effects of stress go side by side with the psychological ones:
- Lack of focus, dizziness, motivation, or concentration.
- Irritability, anger outbursts, nervousness, and panic disorders.
- General negativity.
- Obsessive disorders, worry, and paranoia.
- Becoming numb to your stress from physiologically becoming too accustomed to it.
- Sleepwalking, amnesia, and sleep terrors.
- If your stress lingers for as long as you can imagine, it might lead to suicidal thoughts and mental illness.
How Can You Overcome Psychological and Physical Effects of Stress?
There are many methods through which you can overcome your stress. One of the best short-term strategies is handling it at the moment. It would help if you learned how to practice positive thinking to do a complete makeover of your life in the long run. You can also benefit from meditation, music therapy, or yoga to calm down your irritable nerves and live a longer, healthier life.