Long-term physical stress affects your overall well-being. In fact, stress can cause a multitude of health problems, and if you remain oblivious to the warning signs your body is sending you, you can develop serious issues.
With that being so, we’ve compiled a list of 10 most common signs of physical stress your body exhibits when it’s physically stressed so that you can take the correct steps towards managing your health and have no difficulty relaxing.
But first, you have to understand what physical stress is and how it happens. So, let’s get into it!
What Is Physical Stress?
Physical stress is your body’s response when you’re feeling overwhelmed in a tense or difficult situation. Its triggers can be external or internal factors, but they both lead to the same physical and mental response, aka the stress response.
The stress response entails your body going into a fight or flight response due to the stress hormones of adrenaline, noradrenaline, and cortisol – which mediate the stress response and cause your body to be hyper-alert so that you can overcome or eliminate the stressful agent.
Stress happens to everyone, so occasional episodes of stress are normal. However, if it continues and your body doesn’t rest, then your physical and mental health will both start to suffer, symptoms will appear, and you may find yourself experiencing diseases and losing control of your body.
Therefore, you need to recognize the signs and symptoms of chronic stress so that you can get the help you need.
Symptoms and Signs of Physical Stress
The symptoms of stress can be changes in your body, mood, or behavior. Accordingly, you must pay attention to these warning signs so that you can take a breather and allow yourself to calm down. Here’s what you should look out for.
Emotional/Mental Symptoms of Stress
- Forgetfulness, inability to focus, and decreased productivity
- High levels of mood swings with your emotions all over the place
- Sadness, loneliness, and depression
- Anxiety disorders, pessimism, and low self-esteem
- Irritability and becoming easily agitated
Behavioral Symptoms of Stress
- Social isolation and withdrawal from relationships and family members
- Substance abuse (including drugs, smoking tobacco, or alcohol)
- Changes in eating habits (overeating, loss of appetite, or development of an eating disorder and weight gain)
- Gambling, overshopping, or extreme immersion in any other activities
- The appearance of nervous habits like nail-biting, sweaty hands, heart pacing, jaw clenching, teeth grinding, fidgeting, or similar behaviors of nervousness
Symptoms of Physical Stress
- Muscle tension and pain
- Incessant headaches
- Difficulty in sleeping, nightmares, and insomnia
- Fatigue and low energy
- Decreased sexual desire, disturbed menstrual cycles, or painful periods among women
- Weakened immune system leading to decreased immunity, evident in frequent colds and impaired healing ability, and other infections and illness
- Digestive system problems, such as heartburn, stomach pain, bloating, nausea, constipation, and diarrhea
- Chest pain, difficulty in breathing, increased sweating, and panic attacks
- High blood pressure and rapid heartbeat/ heart rate
- Skin and hair problems, like acne, rashes, psoriasis, eczema, and hair loss
How to Relieve Your Physical Stress Symptoms
Sometimes, stress is unavoidable; however, you can take certain measures to decrease your stress levels.
Firstly, exercise! Even if it’s a short walk, any sort of body movement can diminish your stress levels. You can go to the gym for fitness, dance, swim, do yoga, tai chi, or perform any other physical activity.
Just set a part of your day for exercising and do something you enjoy. And, of course, maintain a healthy diet and get at least 7 hours of sleep a night.
You can also try to do some breathing exercises and practice meditation. Getting a massage can be helpful in relaxing your body and mind. Needless to say, a vacation will work wonders if you’ve been chronically stressed and haven’t taken a break for a while.
Furthermore, make sure to set realistic goals and don’t blame yourself too much if you fall behind. Likewise, strive to remain optimistic!
Lastly, talk to a trusted loved one. Simply talking about your problems can take the edge off, and you end up feeling refreshed, motivated, and ready to face whatever comes your way.
If you’re under too much stress and can’t break free from the vicious cycle, see a health care provider. A therapist or a counselor can greatly alleviate your symptoms and help you cope with your stress, with or without medicine.
Nevertheless, if you find yourself experiencing chest pains, shortness of breath, or an irregular/increased heart rate, go to the hospital to rule out the possibility of a heart attack or other life-threatening conditions that can take their toll on you.
Editors note: interested in trying CBD to manage daily stress and anxiety? Here’s a great Saha CBD product to start with.
Stressful situations can happen to anyone; short-term stress is okay. The problem is with chronic stress.. When you’re constantly experiencing stress, your entire body starts to suffer, and it’ll tell you so through physical, emotional, and behavioral symptoms or signs of stress.
The physical symptoms can be something minor like tense muscles or acid reflux to a cardiovascular disease. In contrast, behavioral stress symptoms can be as significant as the development of substance abuse. Lastly, emotional symptoms can go as far as depression.
So, you need to acknowledge them and deal with your mental health as best as you can so that you can continue your life happily and disease-free. Awareness is the starting point to managing stress!