The Effects of Stress on the Body (17+)

This blogspot will answer the question “what are the effects of stress on your body?”. It will be based on the topics; The short term effects of stress on the body, The long term effects of stress on the body, the physical effects of stress on the body, the effects of stress on the brain, the effects of stress on the social life, the effects of stress on the social life, the effects of stress on the executive life.

What are the short term effects of stress on the body?

The short term effects of stress on the body include:

  • ·         Disturbed eating pattern
  • ·         Disturbed sleep pattern
  • ·         Irritability
  • ·         Mood swings
  • ·         Restlessness

What are the long-term effects of stress on the body?

Research studies reveal that when stress is prolonged it may lead to many different negative health symptoms in the human body. The long term effects of stress on the body include:

  • ·         Generalized anxiety disorder
  • ·         Panic attack
  • ·         Heart attack
  • ·         Disturbed social life
  • ·         Disturbed interpersonal relationships
  • ·         Behavioral addiction
  • ·         Substance abuse
  • ·         Arthritis
  • ·         Infertility

What are the effects of stress on the human brain?

The effects of stress on human brain are as below:

  • ·         Stress leads to memory problems
  • ·         It decreases our concertation
  • ·         It leads to negative thinking patterns among humans
  • ·         It leads to developing automatic racing thoughts
  • ·         It disturbs the hormones and neurotransmitters of the brain
  • ·         Stress leads to a state of constant worrying.
  • ·         Stress leads to overproduction of the cortisol.
  • ·         Stress also leads to an adrenaline rush in the human brain.

Researchers provide empirical evidence in favor of structural and functional changes in the human brain due to stress (Asalgoo et al. 2015). Stress greatly affects the hippocampus and amygdala regions of the brain. Thus the brain functioning related to short term memory, long term memory and emotional experiences often gets impaired due to stress (Lupien & Lepage, 2001).

What are the effects of stress on physical health?

Stress has the following effects on human physical health;

  • Stress disturbs the functioning of the central nervous system.
  • Stress creates hormones imbalance
  • Stress decreases the sex drive (libido)
  • Stress leads to muscle and joint pain.
  • Stress causes cardiac arrest, tachycardia and bradycardia
  • Stress creates symptoms of hypertension and diabetes
  • Stress causes conditions of palpitations and respiratory issues.
  • Stress leads to digestion issues.
  • Stress often causes irritable bowel syndrome
  • Stress leads to tensed jaw bone and facial muscle
  • Stress leads to weak immunity
  • Stress disturbs the reproductive system
  • Stress leads to pains and somatic complaints in the musculoskeletal system
  • Stress leads to fertility problems
  • Stress leads to skin conditions like acne and melisma
  • Stress leads to poor hair growth and frequent hair loss.
  • In males, stress often leads to erectile dysfunction.
  • In females stress produces disturbed menstrual bleeding.
  • Stress leads to early menopause among females.
  • Stress leads to migraine
  • Stress leads to tensed muscles and headaches.

Many researchers have also highlighted the effect of stress on the human body (Monnikes et al., 2001). The effect of stress on the gastrointestinal tract has been emphasized through various research studies (Bhatiaa & Tandon, 2005).

Konturek et al. (2011) also highlighted the effect of the brain bowel axis. He emphasized that due to stress humans often experience conditions like irritable bowel syndrome, peptic ulcer and inflammation of the intestine.

Further, the effect of stress on the cardiovascular system also has an empirical validation.  Rozanski et al. (1993) researched the positive association between stress and various cardiovascular symptoms among humans. Both short term and prolonged stress have a strong negative effect on the human cardiovascular system (Herd, 1991).

Eagler and Eagler (1995) found that stress has both stimulatory and inhibitory effects on the cardiovascular system.  Lazarus et al. (1993) postulated that stress causes activation of the autonomic nervous system and also alters the function of the cardiovascular system.

Herd (1991) elaborated that the effect of stress on the sympathetic nervous system results in decreased sodium secretion in kidneys, rapid heart rate, and vasodilation in arteries of the musculoskeletal system.

Highlighting the effects of stress on the parasympathetic system Pagani et al. (1991) enlisted stimulation of the limbic system, decreased heart rate and declined blood pressure to be the major influences of stress.

The role of stress in decreasing immunity among humans has also been studied by researchers for over a decade. Impaired immune system among humans results when the stress mediators act upon the blood brain barrier and hence suppresses the immune system (Dantzer & Kelley, 1989).

Furthermore the mutual relationship between stress and endocrine system has been of great interest for the researchers (Charmandari et al, 2005). Stress has a broad effect on the hormones and neurotransmitters. The effects of stress on the human endocrine system are complex (Sapolsky, 2002).

Stress alters the function of the pituitary gland, hypothalamus and adrenal glands.  Thus due to stress various hormones may get increased or decreased in human body and thus hormonal imbalance may occur (Tilbrook et al., 2000)

What are the effects of stress on the psychological life of humans?

Stress has various effects on the psychological health of humans. These include;

  • ·         Stress leads to depression among humans
  • ·         Stress leads to anxiety among humans
  • ·         Stress creates psychosomatic complaints among humans
  • ·         Stress leads to insomnia and hypersomnia
  • ·         Stress often causes social anxiety among humans
  • ·         Stress lead to frustration among humans
  • ·         Stress leads to anger issues among humans
  • ·         Stress leads to disturbed emotional expression among humans
  • ·         Stress leads to irritability among humans
  • ·         Stress leads to negative thinking among humans
  • ·         Stress leads to distorted cognitions among humans
  • ·         Stress leads to inadequate self-image.
  • ·         Stress leads to mood disorders.
  • ·         Stress produces mania and hypomania among humans.
  • ·         Stress is a major factor behind psychotic breakdown among humans.
  • ·         Stress leads to audio, visual, tactile and somatic hallucinations among humans.
  • ·         Stress can produce brief psychotic episodes.
  • ·         Stress leads to isolation among humans.
  • ·         Stress leads to lack of pleasure among humans.
  • ·         Stress often produces loss of interest in life among humans.
  • ·         Stress may lead to suicidal ideation among humans.
  • ·         Stress leads to disturbed interpersonal relationships among humans
  • ·         Stress leads to intolerance among humans.

Stress greatly influences the cognitive functioning among humans. It reduces the span of attention among humans. Researchers suggest that the learning process among humans and working memory are greatly affected due to stress (Kohler et al. 2010).

The effects of stress on brain parts like the hippocampus and prefrontal cortex result in deterioration of memory and judgement ability among humans (Sandi, 2013).

Similarly Brocel et al. (2008) emphasized that stress negatively influences the spatial memory among humans. Montaron et al. (2006) also suggested that stress causes a decrease in secretion of gluco-corticosteroids  and leads to impaired spatial learning.

What are the effects of stress on social functioning?

Stress has the following effects on an individual’s social functioning:

  •  Stress disturbs the quality of interpersonal relationships of humans
  • Stress leads to conflictual relationships
  •  Stress reduces a person’s ability to form new meaningful relationships
  •  Stress often causes social anxiety in an individual
  • Stress gives rise to negative emotions in an individual

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What are the effects of stress on an individual’s executive functioning?

Stress greatly influences an individual’s executive functioning. Stress can lead to

  • ·         Poor planning ability among humans
  • ·         Poor time management skills among humans
  • ·         Stress reduces ability to efficiently organize  life events
  • ·         Stress often distorts learning process among humans
  • ·         Stress reduces human motivation to work
  • ·         Stress leads to performance anxiety among humans
  • ·         Stress interferes with stored memory in human mind
  • ·         Stress reduces academic achievement

What are the positive effects of stress on our body?

Stress has the following positive effects on our body:

  • ·         Stress is the driving force behind human’s internal motivation
  • ·         Stress produces anxiety that drives human to thrive for success
  • ·         Stress produces flight or fight response in our body in emergency situations and helps to deal effectively

Conclusion

The current blogspot answered the question “what are the effects of stress on the human body?” We learned that stress has many negative effects on human health. It deteriorates the physical, psychological, social and executive functioning of humans. Due to stress, the human body has a dysfunctional brain, endocrine system, reproductive system, digestive system, cardiovascular system and weak immune system. It also has an effect on sexual performance and leads to erectile dysfunction, vaginismus, and decrease in libido.

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Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs): What are the effects of stress on the human body?

What are the 5 effects of stress on the human body?

The 5 effects of stress on human body are:

  • ·         Stress leads to poor digestive system and cardiovascular system
  • ·         Stress leads to psychological problems
  • ·         Stress leads to weak immunity
  • ·         Stress negatively affects human brain functioning, learning ability and memory
  • ·         Stress leads to infertility

What are the long-term effects of stress on the body?

The long-term effects of stress on human body are:

  • ·         Stress leads to brain stroke and heart attack.
  • ·         Stress can cause hypertension and diabetes among humans
  • ·         Stress is a source of depression among humans
  • ·         Stress leads to generalized anxiety disorder
  • ·         Stress causes impairment in personal, academic and occupational functioning.
  • ·         Stress causes disturbed sleeping patterns
  • ·         Stress leads to disturbed appetite

How do I know I am stressed?

The major signs of a stressed individual are following:

  • ·         Irritability
  • ·         Pressurized speech or low speech
  • ·         Loss of appetite
  • ·         Sleeping pattern is disturbed
  • ·         Difficulty in concentrating on routine activities
  • ·         Low self-esteem
  • ·         Continuous negative thoughts
  • ·         Distorted thinking patterns
  • ·         A continuous feeling of worry

How to get rid of stress?

Following strategies are recommended to get rid of stress:

  •  Maintain a healthy lifestyle
  •  Eat a balanced diet
  •  Add more vegetable and fruits to diet
  • Consider taken multivitamins to reduce stress
  •  Socialize with people to feel active  and reduce stress
  • Spend more time with friends and family
  •   Reduce caffeine intake and try to limit drinking tea, coffee or carbonated drinks
  •  Drink more water and fresh juices
  • Share your thoughts with a trustworthy person
  • Write your thoughts in a dairy
  •  Seek professional help for distorted thinking pattern
  • Try to use a mindful approach to living
  • Exercise helps in reducing stress
  • Meditation helps in reducing stress
  •  Deep breathing helps in reducing stress
  •  Seek a psychiatrist for anti-stress medications to ease stress management
  •  Playing sports reduces stress
  • ·Gardening often helps in reducing stress

What stress can do to your body?

Stress can add many adverse effects to the human body. It results in sudden weight loss or weight gain. It affects the quality of skin. It results in acne and freckles on skin. Stress also leads to significant hair loss and grey hair. Due to stress, body pains and psychosomatic complaints are also very common among humans.

CITATIONS

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Pagani M, Mazzuero G, Ferrari A, Liberati D, Cerutti S, Vaitl D, et al. Sympathovagal interaction during mental stress. A study using spectral analysis of heart rate variability in healthy control subjects and patients with a prior myocardial infarction. Circulation. 1991;83:II43–II51.

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