If you have ever been nervous about a high-pressure situation only to have someone say, “it’s all in your head,” you already know how tricky the mind-body connection can be. While the thoughts and feelings you have about a situation are certainly in your head, your body responds to those thoughts and feelings by producing a number of physical responses.
Over time, if you allow your body to remain in an anxious state, you can suffer serious health consequences. Here are some signs that your stress is becoming chronic:
Quality sleep depends on your body’s ability to remain at a relatively low level of nervous system activation. When you are chronically stressed, your nervous system becomes aroused, increasing the time it takes for you to fall asleep, and decreasing the amount of time you spend in the most restful stages of sleep. Unfortunately, sleep problems often become cyclical, as insufficient sleep can cause further anxiety, which then impacts sleep quality again.
Anxiety is the body’s response to short term stressors. When your muscles clench and your body becomes tense, you are well prepared to flee from a dangerous situation. When your body remains on high alert for an extended time, however, it begins to struggle to maintain the homeostasis that keeps you functioning at an optimal level. This increases systemic inflammation, and can cause the unpleasant sensation of brain fog. Because brain fog and anxiety are so clearly linked, you should consider anxiety as a potential source of your symptoms if you are experience brain fog for the first time.
Although everyone responds differently to stress, changes in appetite or weight are classic symptoms of anxiety. Often, those who experience a peak in anxiety feel an extreme lack of appetite during a single nervous episode. On the other hand, anxiety can trigger personal eating behaviors that result in weight gain or overeating. Just because this is common doesn’t mean it is healthy, so you should do your best to recognize these symptoms when they arise and decrease your stress accordingly.
Headaches, malaise, and general illness can sometimes be a direct result of anxiety. Since anxiety can adversely impact the immune system, it can be difficult to unravel which symptoms are caused by a foreign pathogen and which are caused by nerves without the help of a doctor. Provided you are otherwise healthy, the steps you should take are the same. When you reduce your stress levels, you boost your immune system and improve your overall sense of well-being. For an effective alternative to traditional cold and flu medications, try Brillia over the counter anxiety medication.
HP Thoughts: One of the many reasons why people easily fall into depression is that many schools don’t teach how dangerous it is for anyone to be depressed or in a state of hopelessness. Read our article that focuses on educating the youth regarding mental health — Social-Emotional Learning In Class.
Science is only beginning to grapple with the significance of the long-overlooked mind-body connection. You can think of your body as an incredibly complex instrument. When one part isn’t functioning correctly, you need to address it properly so the other mechanisms aren’t adversely affected.
Stress is a sign from your body that you are pushing yourself too hard. Just respond accordingly and everything will come out alright.