For many of us, stress is a daily reality. Work stress, home stress, and just about everything in between can really leave its mark on us. Despite the realization that most of us live with daily stress, are we missing out on just how stressed we really are? Here we will look at 15 signs that your stress level is taking a significant toll on your overall wellness.
Stress Sign #1: Headaches
It is all too common to hear American adults complaining of headaches. While they can be caused by things like sinus pressure, illness and dehydration, most tension headaches are caused by stress.
Stress Sign #2: Less Than Perfect Annual Physicals
Another red flag that stress is weighing on your health is if you have an unusually bad trip to your doctor. Minor changes in blood pressure, cholesterol and pulse rate can occur as a result of high stress levels.
Stress Sign #3: Muscle Pain
Stress has a unique way of setting up shop throughout our bodies. One place stress has a knack for settling is in our muscles, specifically in our neck, shoulders, and back. If you are experiencing muscle pain and tension, there’s a good chance it is stress related.
Stress Sign #4: Difficulty Sleeping
Yet another sign that stress is impacting your life is when you find that sleep isn’t coming as easily as it usually does. Whether you struggle with falling or staying asleep, a lack of sleep only compounds your stress level.
Stress Sign #5: A Lack of Focus
If you have recently felt like your ability to focus is a struggle, you know that stress is weighing heavily on your mind. When stress levels rise, many people will experience a significant dip in their ability to focus.
Stress Sign #6: Increased Irritability
Have you been more short than normal with those around you? Are you finding that you are more irritable and easily agitated than you usually are? Chances are this rise is due to peaking stress levels.
Stress Sign #7: Feeling Overwhelmed
High stress levels are also commonly associated with feeling out of control and overwhelmed. Feeling overwhelmed is the brain’s way of signaling that stress is reaching high levels.
Stress Sign #8: Upset Stomach
Another physical manifestation of high stress levels is digestive upset. From nausea to heartburn and everything in between – when stress rises so to do stomach issues.
Stress Sign #9: Constantly Feeling Tired
Chronic exhaustion is one more way you can tell you are stressed. Even if you are managing to get adequate sleep, life pressure can take its toll in the form of feeling constantly tired.
Stress Sign #10: Changes in Your Sex Drive
Stress impacts just about every part of our minds and body’s when it reaches extreme levels. Changes in your sex drive are frequently experienced when someone is under a great deal of stress.
Stress Sign #11: Feeling Sad or Lonely
The combination of worry, exhaustion and physical symptoms can leave you feeling sad, lonely and isolated. Unfortunately, these feelings will only exacerbate your other stress symptoms.
Stress Sign #12: Avoiding Social Situations
If you are finding yourself turning down plans you usually would have accepted or spending higher amounts of time alone – this is a sign that your stress level is out of control. High stress levels often leave people feeling isolated and alone.
Stress Sign #13: Turning to Food, Tobacco or Alcohol
A telltale sign that stress is impacting your health is if you are turning to things like overeating, drug or alcohol use and tobacco products. While these seem like they might alleviate your stress, it is only a short-term solution that can cause more stress in the long run.
Stress Sign #14: Chest Pain
While chest pain can be a sign of serious problems and should never be ignored, it can be a sign that your stress level is excessive.
Stress Sign #15: Avoiding Exercise
If you are typically an active person and find yourself shying away from exercise, this may be another symptom of stress. What’s unfortunate about this is exercise can be a great way to alleviate high stress levels.
If you are experiencing some of these symptoms this is your body’s way of raising the red flag on stress. While you may be aware that stress is impacting you, you might be missing how big the impact is. By listening to your body, you can better understand how and why now is a good time to start managing and reducing your stress and tension.