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Symptoms of stress

By Charles Hopkins Published 08/8/2006 | Health

The symptoms of stress can be physical, emotional or relational. That is why each symptom calls for a different approach. Physical symptoms are the easiest to notice and treat. In most cases appropriate medication can solve the problem. Here it is important to keep in mind that stress may not be the sole cause for a medical problem. But undue stress can worsen the problem.

Back and shoulder aches, migraine and headaches are a few of the mild symptoms of stress. As the intensity of stress increases the symptoms also become severe. Hair loss, chest pain, hypertension and shortness of breath have been commonly observed among individuals suffering from stress.

Stress is closely interlinked with the functioning of the gastrointestinal system. Excessive stress experienced on a regular basis can result in appetite disorders like bulimia and anorexia. Studies have confirmed that peptic ulcers become worse due to stress. There is also a higher incidence of stomach burns due to inflammation and formation of gas. In some cases diarrhea and constipation can also become a problem.

Under stress the white blood cell count also decreases significantly. This results in poor immunity levels. Stressed out individuals are therefore more prone to cold, flu, skin problems and other microbial infections. The immune response time also goes down.

Since these symptoms can be seen, they can be treated by undertaking an appropriate medical treatment. It is better if you are able to identify the symptoms at an early stage. The treatment process becomes faster and simpler.

It is the emotional and the relationship problems that are more complex and challenging. Stress can lead to a total burnout and breakdown of individuals if it is ignored and left untreated. Some people commit suicide since they are unable to cope with stress and pressure.

Depression, anxiety and frustration are few of the behavioral symptoms experienced by people under constant stress. Even their thought process is affected. They are unable to make or take decisions quickly due to which their work suffers. This often becomes another reason for stress. They are unable to concentrate and focus on a single event properly.

Stressed out people often use anger and aggressiveness as a mode to vent their frustration and to get rid of their problems momentarily. Sometimes they might resort to violence also.  All this can affect their relationship with friends, family and colleagues. People slowly start to move away from them.

Isolation is a major cause for people falling into deep depression and losing interest in life itself. The worst affected is their family life. It becomes difficult for them to maintain relationships. Even the smallest of issues trigger negative responses. Divorces become more common.

Mood swings are common. Unable to control their emotions they take to smoking and drinking. These bring an unnatural calm and respite. But these feelings are only temporary. They soon turn into nasty habits that act as stressful agents themselves. That is why it is important to seek proper counseling to deal with stress as soon as possible.