JoDa Hodge
Effects Of Stress (Reposted by JoDa Hodge) (Recommended by JoDa Hodge)

American Institute of Stress

Effects Of Stress

Stress is difficult for scientists to define because it is a highly subjective phenomenon that differs for each of us. Things that are distressful for some individuals can be pleasurable for others. We also respond to stress differently. Some people blush, some eat more while others grow pale or eat less. There are numerous physical as well as emotional responses as illustrated by the following list of some 50 common signs and symptoms of stress.

1.  Frequent headaches, jaw clenching or
     pain

26. Insomnia, nightmares, disturbing
      dreams
2.  Gritting, grinding teeth

27. Difficulty concentrating, racing thoughts
3.  Stuttering or stammering

28. Trouble learning new information
4.  Tremors, trembling of lips, hands

29. Forgetfulness, disorganization,
      confusion
5.  Neck ache, back pain, muscle spasms

30. Difficulty in making decisions.
6.  Light headedness, faintness, dizziness

31. Feeling overloaded or overwhelmed.
7.  Ringing, buzzing or “popping sounds

32. Frequent crying spells or suicidal
      thoughts
8.  Frequent blushing, sweating

33. Feelings of loneliness or worthlessness
9.  Cold or sweaty hands, feet

34. Little interest in appearance,
      punctuality
10. Dry mouth, problems swallowing

35. Nervous habits, fidgeting, feet tapping
11. Frequent colds, infections, herpes sores

36. Increased frustration, irritability,
      edginess
12. Rashes, itching, hives, “goose bumps”

37. Overreaction to petty annoyances
13. Unexplained or frequent “allergy”
      attacks

38. Increased number of minor accidents
14. Heartburn, stomach pain, nausea

39. Obsessive or compulsive behavior
15. Excess belching, flatulence

40. Reduced work efficiency or productivity
16. Constipation, diarrhea

41. Lies or excuses to cover up poor work
17. Difficulty breathing, sighing

42. Rapid or mumbled speech
18. Sudden attacks of panic

43. Excessive defensiveness or
      suspiciousness
19. Chest pain, palpitations

44. Problems in communication, sharing
20. Frequent urination

45. Social withdrawal and isolation
21. Poor sexual desire or performance

46. Constant tiredness, weakness, fatigue
22. Excess anxiety, worry, guilt,
      nervousness

47. Frequent use of over-the-counter drugs
23. Increased anger, frustration, hostility

48. Weight gain or loss without diet
24. Depression, frequent or wild mood
      swings 

49. Increased smoking, alcohol or drug use
25. Increased or decreased appetite

50. Excessive gambling or impulse buying

As demonstrated in the above list, stress can have wide ranging effects on emotions, mood and behavior. Equally important but often less appreciated are effects on various systems, organs and tissues all over the body, as illustrated by the following diagram.

There are numerous emotional and physical disorders that have been linked to stress including depression, anxiety, heart attacks, stroke, hypertension, immune system disturbances that increase susceptibility to infections, a host of viral linked disorders ranging from the common cold and herpes to AIDS and certain cancers, as well as autoimmune diseases like rheumatoid arthritis and multiple sclerosis. In addition stress can have direct effects on the skin (rashes, hives, atopic dermatitis, the gastrointestinal system (GERD, peptic ulcer, irritable bowel syndrome, ulcerative colitis) and can contribute to insomnia and degenerative neurological disorders like Parkinson’s disease. In fact, it’s hard to think of any disease in which stress cannot play an aggravating role or any part of the body that is not affected (see stress effects on the body stress diagram) or. This list will undoubtedly grow as the extensive ramifications of stress are increasingly being appreciated. Additional information is available at Current and Past Stress Scoops, Current and Past Newsletters and elsewhere on www.stress.org

Links to sites with additional information on the effects of stress include:

© The American Institute of Stress 2011

(Reposted by JoDa Hodge) (Recommended by JoDa Hodge)
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