Effective stress management is a crucial skill that every individual needs to possess nowadays given that stress has become so rampant. Although stress is not entirely detrimental and can even be helpful and motivating at moderate levels, chronic exposure to high levels of stress can lead to numerous mental, physical, and emotional conditions. Some of the most common problems include hypertension, heart attacks, depression, anxiety, accelerated aging, and even death.

With the knowledge that stress can bring about harm came the outpouring of information on how to deal with it effectively. As a matter of fact, stress management information is readily available to anyone, often without any cost.

Dealing with stress positively and effectively is not as difficult as many people imagine. The majority of stress-relief methods or stress management techniques are quite straightforward and require nothing more than common sense. The problem that people are facing these days is the inability to recognize that one’s stress levels are already out of hand.

Importance of Recognizing Stress Symptoms

It’s important to learn how to recognize when your stress levels are actually getting out of control. Stress is deceptive. It has its way of creeping up on you so you get used to it and you start to feel a certain sense of familiarity with it. If you are not mindful of your body, you may just be surprised to see that it has already taken its toll on you and has already caused a great deal of harm.

For instance, people who are constantly exposed to high levels of stress may think that they have grown accustomed to the pressure and high surge of adrenaline, but the truth is, there is no such thing as getting used to stress. When you thrive on stress, it’s just difficult for you to discern the symptoms of stress; but this does not mean that your body is not responding to stress. Eventually, something within you will malfunction.

It is important to recognize stress before it actually develops into a serious health problem. And while stress affects different people in many different ways, there are certain factors and symptoms that are common among the general population.

Symptoms of Uncontrolled Stress

Like in any medical condition, the starting point towards the resolution of the problem that is stress is symptom recognition. Stress is your body’s way of protecting you; it is a normal physiological response to any threatening event that comes your way. But beyond a certain point, stress stops being helpful and starts causing harm to your health and life in general. Below are some of the common warning signs and symptoms of too much or uncontrolled stress. If you seem to be experiencing many of the symptoms listed, then it likely indicates that you are not coping with the stress in your life effectively.

Cognitive Symptoms.

Cognitive symptoms refer to problems that have anything to do with brain processes like thinking, attention, perception, memory, reasoning, and problem solving. The most commonly observed cognitive symptoms of poorly managed stress are as follows:

  • Memory problems

  • Decreased concentration abilities

  • Poor decision-making

  • Negativity

  • Unreasonable anxiety

Emotional Symptoms.

Emotional symptoms are those symptoms that are associated with a person’s feelings. Emotional changes can be normal, temporary responses to events; however, disproportionate, extreme, persistent, or unstable emotional reactions may indicate a serious issue. In stress, the following emotional symptoms can indicate stress overload:

  • Extreme mood swings

  • Irritability

  • Constant state of agitation

  • Depression

Physical Symptoms.

Physical symptoms are basically your body’s physical manifestations. They are often characterized by pain, are characterized by discomfort, or are visually observable. The most common physical indicators of too much stress are the following symptoms:

  • Severe headaches or migraines

  • Backaches

  • Chest discomfort

  • GI disturbances

  • Sleep pattern changes

The health problems brought about by uncontrolled stress do not develop overnight. Be wary of these little red flags if you don’t want to find yourself suffering some major health issue.

Quick way to reduce stress: 7 Simple Ways to Lower Your Stress in 15 Minutes or Less

Featured photo credit: Crowds in an urban setting via Shutterstock

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