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Negative Effects of Stress on the Body

Stress can affect our health in a number of ways. The following PsycholoGenie article discusses the negative repercussions of stress.
PsycholoGenie Staff
Stress is the body's response to situations that simply cannot be handled. Although the body is capable of tolerating stress up to a certain level, when it is persistent and occurs repeatedly, it can affect overall well-being. It is discussed below:

How Stress Affects Our Health

Prolonged stress can disrupt normal bodily functions. Impact of stress can elevate blood pressure, increase the likelihood of a heart attack and stroke, and accelerate the aging process.

Excessive stress can make the person susceptible to mental illnesses such as depression and anxiety.

Repeated stress can cause irreversible hair loss which may eventually lead to baldness. People under stress have a hard time getting quality sleep. They often face poor concentration and memory, which can halt their progress in life. In general, when stress overpowers you, health issues that may erupt are as follows:
  • Fatigue
  • Headaches
  • Insomnia
  • Weight fluctuations
  • Chronic pain
  • Muscle tension
  • Irregular heartbeats (heart pounds faster)
High levels of stress can also contribute to the development of gastrointestinal disorders like irritable bowel syndrome, diarrhea, and constipation. Inability to bear the daily stresses and strains of life like can also impair the immune system, thereby making the body vulnerable to wide range of infections.

Stressed out people can be besieged with skin problems like eczema, hives, and psoriasis. The impact of stress can also interfere with the digestive system. This may cause increased acidity, stomach upsets, and poor digestion.

Other effects of stress on the human body include:
  • Sexual dysfunction
  • Metabolism declines
  • Ulcers
  • Periodontal disease (tooth and gum disease)
Socially unacceptable behavior such as alcohol abuse is commonly noticed in people exposed to high levels of stress. Stress is one of the biggest contributor to the increased incidence of anti-social behavior that mainly involve domestic and workplace violence. There have been instances where people have succumb to stress and committed suicide.

Although stress is something that cannot be avoided, the good news is that it can be easily managed by following stress management techniques like yoga and meditation. These practices not only reduce stress but also allow to lead a healthier lifestyle.

Disclaimer: The information provided in this article is solely for educating the reader. It is not intended to be a substitute for the advice of a medical expert.