The symptoms of stress can show up in unexpected ways. You probably can relate to the most common stress symptoms reported by other American adults (discussed earlier), but consider the following questions and whether you’re experiencing any of the following signs of a stress-filled life:
Do you find yourself hyperventilating? Deep breathing in the face of physical exertion is useful, as it allows for increased oxygen to be used by the body. Hyperventilation, or overbreathing, however, creates a situation where the body releases too much carbon dioxide, resulting in dizziness, tingling, headache, and general weakness.
Do you grind your teeth at night? Teeth grinding is a known symptom of stress, as clenching of the jaw muscles causes the teeth to work against each other, even during sleep.
Are you breaking out in pimples, acne, or skin rashes? Stress produces toxins in the body that can be excreted through the largest organ you have— your skin.
Is your interest in or ability to have sex flagging? Stress can suck all the sexual energy out of a room, leaving you tired, unmotivated, and uninterested. Stress can also lead to painful periods in women and episodes of impotence in men.
Are you gaining weight, or have you lost interest in food? Food is a common way people cope with stress— either by self-medicating through food or losing their appetites. Large shifts in weight—either up or down—can indicate the presence of stress.
Do you find yourself ranting or venting your feelings of anger? An emotional rant or venting may make you feel more relaxed, more relieved, because stress can be painful, and people in pain may react strongly in anger. Anger is a powerful physical and psychological response that can bleed off some of the effects of stress.
Do you turn to alcohol more and more often to relax? Alcohol is a powerful depressant that some may use or abuse to depress an overactive central nervous system ramped up by stress.
Professional Health Tip from Dr. Gregory Jantz…
To help reduce stress, be purposeful about relaxing. Remind yourself you get to control your thoughts. Practice letting comments that normally cause you stress to roll off your back. Give the aggressive driver on the highway a pass, and don’t get irritated when they cut you off. Take 10 purposeful, deep, consistent breaths to start your day. Do the same before you go to bed.
Our bodies and our minds were created to handle a certain amount of strain or tension as a part of living this life. But what happens to a cord when you increase the tension? Even though the cord is designed with a certain amount of give, at some point that cord will break.
We were created with a stress response that was meant to help us recognize and escape danger. We were not created to stay stuck in that stress response. Getting stuck produces the danger of breaking down physically and/or psychologically.
If you are struggling with stress, anxiety, or depression, The Center • A Place of HOPE is here to help. Our team is skilled at navigating these sensitive issues. For more information, fill out this form or call 1-888-747-5592 to speak confidentially with a specialist today.