7 Chronic Stress Symptoms You Need To Take Action On Now
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7 Chronic Stress Symptoms You Need To Take Action On Now
I’m sure you know that too much stress is bad for you, but do you know when that point is reached. The fact is, the body is capable of handling stress- but just to a certain extent. After that, chronic stress symptoms become highly visible that something is going terribly wrong. Sadly doctors often misdiagnose these symptoms and don’t realize the root cause is actually stress.
Then they make guesses and offer all they know a prescription medicine to fix that symptom. The prescriptions end up causing even more problems and may not even address the symptom you went to the doctor for to begin with.
#1 Premature Aging may be one of the chronic stress symptoms you have noticed.
We all have different speeds with which we age, and that’s ok. However, you can identify something is drastically wrong when you start greying significantly before the age of 30, and with neither parent having similar traits. You may also notice your skin looking in poorer health than normal, and that is largely a result of cortisol’s actions. It can’t be reversed, but it’s never too late to start implementing correct changes now to offset what has started.
Many young people are becoming busy business executives, jobs that require countless hours at the office and many sleepless nights. This takes a toll on your body. Premature aging is your body literally telling you that stress is slowly killing you.
#2 Are you always tired?
While sleep is an amazing remedy for what ails you, sadly stress is a massive beast that it is not always easy to leash. There is a seemingly unacknowledged condition known as adrenal fatigue, which occurs following periods of chronically high cortisol and adrenalin production, which results in a suppression of its actions.
The normal get up and go our adrenal glands allow for is no longer present. Drive and motivation become increasingly difficult to maintain without the use of stimulants that force action of these hormones, and the result is a state of constant grogginess and exhaustion.
Now, Adrenal Fatigue is something I have experienced first hand. I even wrote a whole blog series about it. You can read it here: Adrenal Fatigue what is it and what can we do about it?
#3 Do you get sick frequently?
The immune system is unique. It consists of a team including white blood cells, organs, chemical mediators, and antibodies, which collectively try to safeguard the body from foreign invaders that may occur in cells or in the blood.
In addition, while the immune system is very efficient at removing these invaders, including bacteria, viruses, or cancer cells, it can become compromised because of external interference, in this case chronic stress.
Cortisol suppresses our immune system after being recruited for long periods of time. As a result, the cells of the immune system become less capable of handling threats that may pose a harm to the body. Even the trivial seasonal flu which you typically avoid may seem like the plague when you have a suppressed immune system.
#4 Do you find it impossible to lose weight?
You may be thinking it is just willpower or not working hard enough, but no this could definitely be one of the chronic stress symptoms. While cortisol itself doesn’t result in weight gain, it very well may lead to that outcome. For one, cortisol is a bit of a hoarder, trying as hard as possible to store as many calories in your body as it can. This is because cortisol recruitment is a primitive survival instinct. Secondly, is the action it has on blood sugar.
It causes the liver to convert stored glycogen into glucose and pour it into the blood, in the event you need fast energy. Insulin follows sugar wherever it goes, and this is what causes fat storage and blockage of fat burning.
#5 Your Brain Refuses to Work At 100% Efficiency
This is one of the most overlooked of the chronic stress symptoms. We tend to contribute it to everything else. When your cortisol increases so do a neurotransmitter in the brain called Glutamate. As glutamate increases so do the generation of reactive oxygen species. This actively damages cells in the brain causing them to die. It has been implicated as a factor in the development of Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s.
This wouldn’t be such an issue if new cells were being formed, but it’s not the case. Stress has a way of shutting down this recovery as well. Lack of recovery speeds up aging and deterioration of the brain. This can explain why some people experience significantly more cognitive issues under high stress.
The brain possesses a natural “barrier,” aptly called the blood-brain barrier. Under normal circumstances, this barrier prevents entry of toxins and pathogens that cause disease. However, under the influence of cortisol, this barrier becomes much more lenient, allowing more and more unfavorable elements to enter into the brain.
With chronic stress symptoms, you feel like a space cadet groggy, near impossible to focus, concentrate or formulate complex plans. Add horrible memory to the mix and you can see why stress brings you close to death.
#6 Chest Pains/ Hypertension
This is one of the most serious of the chronic stress symptoms and by the time you have them, it could be too late. Stress accelerates blockages of the arteries on and around the heart, as well as restricting the blood vessels’ ability to relax, causing your blood pressure to spike and your stroke risk to go up. You become easily winded and experience chest pains with the least bit of exertion.
Could high blood pressure be one of the chronic stress symptoms?
Let’s talk about blood pressure for a moment. Cortisol promotes sodium retention, which is bad by itself but made worse because it also promotes water retention by the body. The more water the body retains, the greater blood volume is. Higher blood volume, coupled with small blood vessels is a horrible recipe for hypertension.
What about the build-up of plaque as a chronic stress symptom?
How does High cholesterol fit into all this? Well, it is implicated in causing buildup of plaques in arteries, but this is only partly true. Stress hormones cortisol, an enzyme named angiotensin and other factors cause damage inside blood vessels, which then lead to the recruitment of immune cells to the area of damage.
Then, the body forms an internal clot which is compounded upon with deposits of this plaque. These “blobs” are balls of inflammation which keep sending immune signals for reinforcements, and the cycle continues until the heart is unable to get sufficient blood past the blockages and then failure results. So yes, most definitely this can put stress on the body.
#7 You Suffer From Insomnia
Adrenaline is one of the body’s stress hormones. It is the hormone that kicks us into high gear, so we “fight or flight.” Adrenaline makes us alert, increases heart rate, breathing, and eliminates the desire for sleep.
When your stress turns chronic, however, Adrenaline is released around the clock. This prevents us from getting to sleep. Beware when you find yourself unable to sleep more often. That is a way your body may be telling you it has had stress for too long.
Now, what can you do with this information?
It is imperative that you get your stress under control as fast as humanly possible. These chronic stress symptoms can occur gradually over time, but can easily be managed in the early stages.
I created a guide with 101 Stress-Busting Techniques and I would love to send it to you. Just click on the link to get it now.
In this guide, you’ll discover how to manage stress in your everyday life with simple strategies. These strategies work to manage stress and balance your mind and body.
If you have a friend or family member that needs to hear these tips don’t hesitate to share this blog post with them.
Check out the rest of the blogs in this series below: