What Happens When You're Stressed?

Thursday, November 29, 2012

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Stress can be uncomfortable. It can cause you to feel overwhelmed or tense, your heart to beat faster, and an upset stomach or headache. As you worry about your stressors, you may feel anxious or depressed. Does this sound like you? 

So what’s going on?

  • Body Prepares for Action
    When you are stressed, you might find that your heart rate goes up, your stomach is upset, you sweat, or you notice your muscles—like in your shoulders, neck, or back—are tight. This is partly because your body responds to stress to try to be ready to face the stressor head on.

     

  • Body and Mind Respond
    Once your body is activated, digestion slows down and thinking narrows to focus on the stressor. This is not always a bad thing. For example, when facing a big work deadline, we might need a little surge of energy and mental focus to get the job done!

     

  • Body and Mind Forget to Turn Off
    When we’re stressed, our bodies and minds are constantly “on.” It can be hard to sleep and hard to focus on anything other than the stressor.

     

  • The Consequence
    Too much stress over long periods can also weaken your body’s immune system, making it harder to fight off sicknesses like colds and flus. And stress can make you irritable, depressed and anxious—possibly leading to problems in your relationships and at work or school—which can cause even more stress!

Although being alert and ready for action can be a healthy response in some situations, it’s not healthy for our bodies and minds to be chronically “on.” Learn how to deal with stress in a healthy way with 8 Tips to DE-STRESS!

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