How Stress Affects Your Body

Stress can sometimes be avoided, but often times it becomes a part of our daily lives. You always hear, “Don’t stress out. Everything will work out the way it should”, but how does stress affect us physically? I will be the first to admit, I stress out more than I should. My husband and those around me will tell me to chill out and relax, but by the end of the day I am once again stressing out.

Stress is a major part of our health issues in today’s society. Some of the ways it affects our bodies is as follows.

  • Headaches, dizziness, ADD/ADHD, anxiety, irritability and anger, and panic disorder
  • Grinding teeth and tension in the jaw
  • Increased heart rate, strokes, diabetes type I and II, and arrhythmias
  • Digestive disorders, upset stomach, abdominal pain, and irritable bowel syndrome
  • Weight gain and obesity
  • Insomnia, emotional and behavioral problems, immune system dysfunction, asthma, ulcers, lack of energy, depression, nervousness, and paranoia
  • Muscle tension, fibromyalgia, and complex regional pain syndrome
  • Alcoholism, suicide, drug addiction, tobacco addiction, and other harmful behaviors

Here are some interesting facts about our body and stress as well.

Fact #1: It doesn’t matter if it is a big stress or a little stress. No matter how big the situation is, your body is still affected by the stress that comes in your life. It also doesn’t matter if it is ten times a day or once a day, stress affects your body just the same.

Fact #2: Stress can change people. Stress causes “Cortical Inhibition”. Stress affects a small portion of your brain causing you to not act the same way you would if you weren’t stressed putting you in a different state of mind.

Fact#3: You can become numb to the stress in your life. Just because you get used to the stress in your life doesn’t mean you aren’t being affected by it and it isn’t damaging your body.

Fact#4: We can control our response to stress. When stress comes along, we need to try and be positive. I know sometimes that is a lot to ask but there are times that stress will come in and we can’t control that. So when stress comes to our lives, we should be greeting it as a challenge. Try not to let it ruin your day.

Fact #5: Handle the stress as it comes: Don’t worry about the stresses that come into your lives in the future. ,

Don’t worry about tomorrow, for tomorrow will bring enough worries of its own. Matthew 6:34 NIV

If you feel like the stresses of life become too much to handle, go find a stress reliever. It could be as simple as going to a yoga class or something more creative. For me, art is my stress reliever. I will sit down and draw a picture or color in a coloring book. Whatever your form of stress relief, make sure you find one that will help reduce the effects on your body.