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The Effects of Stress on the Body

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Stress is a normal physiological response, but too much of it isn’t good for us. It’s natural to feel a bit of tension before an exam or big meeting, or during major life changes. A little bit keeps us alert and ready, motivating us for action, but chronic stress is harmful. It has many serious effects on the body, and should not be taken lightly. Read on to learn more about how a constant state of stressfulness and worry impacts the body. 

Chronic Stress

It is a normal response to triggering events. In the short-term, it helps you to handle serious situations. The body’s response includes hormone releases that boost your heart rate and breathing, so your muscles are ready to fire and respond quickly. However, if this physiological change continues for a long period, your stress levels stay up beyond the necessary amount of time for survival. This chronic state is damaging and can impact your overall health in many ways. 

The Effects 

Stress is a visceral response, impacting every aspect of the human body. Commonly, it can affect both your body, mood, and behavior. 


Some of the ways it can affect your body include:

  • Fatigue
  • Upset stomach 
  • Change in sex drive
  • Sleep issues
  • Chest pain
  • Muscle tension/pain 
  • Headaches

It also affects your mood and mental health.

Chronic stress often leads to:

  • Anxiety 
  • Depression
  • Insomnia
  • Irritability
  • Anxiety 

Managing Stress

Chronic stress quickly becomes cyclical and can lead to muscle tension and headaches. The feeling of tight muscles and a pounding brain cause you to get more wound up and hold on to your anxious feelings longer. Soon, you have a constant level of tension and higher stress levels. At this point, stressing is not helping you anymore, in fact it is can become hard to bring under control. 

If you have symptoms of stress, chronic or otherwise, you must take active measures to reduce them. Stress management is key for your overall health and wellbeing. In addition to humor, physical activity, and hobbies, tackling the physical impact will also help. Loosening up your muscles with yoga and meditation can help you find relaxation. 

Integrative Family Wellness in Smithtown on Long Island, New York has several holistic practices that can help you relieve the physical symptoms of stress and practice deep relaxation. Our customers report incredible benefits from many of our practices, especially massage. Don’t live with unbearable stress any longer, contact the team at IFW in Suffolk County to set up your appointment today.