Negative Impact of Stress on Your Mind and Body
By Selina Johnson
Are you getting overwhelmed easily? Can’t get enough of your daily dose of caffeine? Not being able to secure a sound sleep? You might think illness is to be blamed for an irritating headache, but stress might be the actual reason behind it. You are probably stressed out. Stress symptoms not only affect our body, but it also affects our thoughts, feelings and the way we look at the world.
In case you are going too hard on yourself without recognising what stress could do to an otherwise peaceful life, here’s everything you should know.
How Stress Affects Our Mind and Body
To begin with, let us highlight and discuss the most critical effects of stress. Stresses that are left unrecognised or checked could contribute to several health problems including high blood pressure, obesity, heart disease, acute mood swings and more.
- Impact of Stress on our Mood
Stress, if kept untreated for long, can actually have negative impacts on our mood. As a result, it gives rise of restlessness, lack of focus or motivation, cranky behaviour, anxiety and more.
- Impact of Stress on our Body
Apart from affecting our moods, stress gives rise to complexities that eventually results in ill-health. It could cause chest pain, fatigue, change in sex drive, muscle tension or pain, sleep disorders, stomach pain and more.
- Impact of Stress on our Behaviour
Did you know stress gives rise to behavioral disorders as well? It might either cause overeating or under eating, acute drug or alcohol abuse, social withdrawal, use of tobacco and the likes.
Case Study of a Posttraumatic Stress Disorder
Now that you are aware of the impacts stress and anxiety could bring on us, I would like to use a couple case studies for your reference and knowledge regarding real-life instances.
Here you go...
Case Study 1: According to amenclinics.com, Linda was 26 years old when she started taking stress disorders seriously. Prior to that, she had a history of being a victim of two violent rapes, an abusive relationship, and experiences of dealing with the death of eight close friends.
It goes without saying that things did not go well with her down the road as Linda surrendered to stress and acute anxiety. Her symptoms included depression, anxiety and drug use. A baseline SPECT study showed over- activity in the cingulate, limbic areas and basal ganglia. After undergoing four months of psychotherapy sessions and other medications, Linda felt significantly better.
Case Study 2: According to another recorded history of stress and anxiety case study, Sarah, a 19 year old student from Birmingham, United Kingdom became a victim of acute stress and anxiety. She failed to graduate as a student of arts and was constantly on the lookout for someone to provide her with timely coursework help. Her professor, James Matthew took advantage of the situation and promised her to provide with academic assignment assistance in return of a “favour”. Sarah refused the proposal straightaway and walked out of the classroom only to realise that the professor soon turned out to be a dangerous stalker.
He had her pictures morphed and shared them on all pornography sites, When Sarah came to know about the incident, she could not deal with the trauma and attempted suicide. Her scans revealed high activity in the anterior cingulate gyrus, thalamus and basal ganglia. The girl recovered from the traumatic state of mind after undergoing intensive treatment for six months.
How to Manage and Reduce Stress Levels
Now that you know what stress and anxiety could do to a healthy body and mind, let me share some of the best practices that you can embrace.
- Reduce caffeine, alcohol and tobacco intake: I know it might be a tough job for you to quit alcohol, caffeine or tobacco at a single go; you can always put an effort to reduce it by quantity. How about swapping alcoholic or caffeinated drinks for herbal teas, diluted natural fruit juices and water? These are considered as some of the best alternatives to medicated anti-depressants that enable us to cope better with stress.
- Indulge more in physical activities: How often have you tried incorporating physical activities into your daily routine? If not, then it’s high time you do. Take some time out either before work or once you are done with it, hit the gym, try out freehand exercises or jogging to live a healthy and stress-free life. Most importantly, regular physical exercise helps in improving the quality of your sleep.
- Try stress reduction techniques: There are several stress relaxation techniques you could implement in order to receive fruitful benefits. For example, try self-hypnosis. The idea is to focus on words that have a positive impact on you. For instance, “peace”, “love”, “smile”, “calm” and the likes. Simply focus on the chosen word and silently repeat it. This will eventually help you to instil positivity and fight against the odds of stress and anxiety like a true hero.
- Pursue your hobbies: It is extremely important for you to set aside time for your hobbies such as listening to music, writing, reading books, painting and the likes. Doing what you love helps in dealing with stress and anxiety.
- Maintain a stress diary: You need to keep track and note down the date, time and place of the stressful episodes in your life. Consider a few factors during the period. For instance, who were you with? How did he/she make you feel emotionally and physically? Were you alone during the period of stress?
As you would proceed with the answers, make sure you are noting them down in the diary. Evaluate a series of such similar incidents for another week and find out ways that would help you to confront and overcome all odds effectively.
Now that you are aware of the consequences of stress with references to significant case studies and suggestions that will help you to get rid of the disorder, take a deep breath. Always remember, you are not alone. There are people who have braved the storm and woke up the next morning with a smile. Be one of them, share your story and inspire others, for someone, somewhere truly said,
“The Show Must Go On”
Selina Johnson is a web developer for a distinguished IT firm in Australia. She has completed her B.Tech degree from Federation University. She is an avid reader and blogger. She is also a part of MyAssignmenthelp and offers assistance to students when they come with the query, “Need Statistics Homework Help?”
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