Symptoms of Stress

by noline

Stress is viewed as a psychological problem, but it has definite physical symptoms. Read on for more information about the symptoms associated with stress...

Stress is defined as any change that a person must adapt to in our ever changing world. In particular, stress is any demand placed on the body and the body’s response to it.

Being stressed can sometimes feel like being on an endless roller coaster ride, with side movements jerking us around and exhilarating climbs and sudden frightening falls. Just as the roller coaster ride may feel never ending, a stressed person may feel helpless as they are unable to get off the ride.

Stress has a significant impact on our lives. In this article we consider the physical, behavoural and psychological symptoms of stress and then look at the short term and long term response to stress...

Wave of Stress

Stress can be seen as a surfer, surfing the big waves. Initially as the surfer is inexperienced the bigger waves are scary. As the surfer becomes more experienced, he looks for bigger and bigger waves and bigger andd bigger challenges. Just like this we also tend to become addicted to stress, always looking for the bigger wave.

Big Wave
Managing Stress: Principles And Strategies For Health And Well-Being

Managing Stress, Seventh Edition, provides a comprehensive approach to stress management honoring the integration, balance, and harmony of mind, body, spirit, and emotions. The ...

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The Relaxation and Stress Reduction Workbook (New Harbinger Self-Help Workbook)

Since its first publication in 1980, "The Relaxation and Stress Reduction Workbook" has become the most indispensable resource for effective and up-to-date techniques for relaxi...

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Physical Symptoms of Stress

  • Sleep disturbances
  • Back, shoulder or neck pain
  • Headaches
  • Muscle tension
  • Upset or acid stomach
  • Heartburn, cramps
  • Irritable bowel syndrome
  • Constipation, diarrhoea
  • Weight gain or loss, eating disorders
  • Fatigue
  • High blood pressure
  • Asthma or shortness of breath



Behavioral Symptoms

  • Isolation from social activities
  • Conflict with co-workers or employers
  • Road rage
  • Domestic or workplace violence
  • Over reactions

Psychological Symptoms

  • Nervousness, anxiety
  • Depression, moodiness
  • Irritability, frustration
  • Memory problems
  • Lack of concentration
  • Feeling out of control

Marc David

... Physiological Response of Stress on Digestion...

Physiological Changes

.. that occur when the body is stressed include...
  • Increased secretion of adrenaline.
  • Elevation of blood pressure.
  • Acceleration of the heartbeat.
  • Greater tension in muscles.
  • Digestion slows.
  • Fats and sugars are released from body stores.
  • Cholesterol levels rise.
  • Composition of blood changes, increasing blood clotting.
  • The pituitary gland increases the production of ACTH, stimulating the release of cortisone and cortisol, resulting in suppressing the immune response.
  • Increased production of adrenal hormones leads to an increase in metabolism of fats, proteins and carbohydrates.

Fight or Flight

High stress levels keep a person in the “fight or flight” mode, over stimulating the autonomous nervous system. When a person is continuously on “the go” and stressed, not giving the body time to rest, the parasympathetic nervous system does not get an opportunity to do its work.

The results of stress can be either acute or long term. The short and long term results are...

Short term Response

... to stress include...
  • Increased heart rate.
  • Increased blood pressure.
  • Conversion of glycogen to glucose to be released to blood.
  • Changes in blood flow patterns resulting in decreased digestive and kidney activity.

Long term Response

... to stress include...
  • Increased blood volume and blood pressure.
  • Conversion of proteins and fats to glucose to be released to blood.
  • Increased blood sugar.
  • Suppression of immune system.
  • Nutritional deficiencies.
  • Slows healing.

Notice - This information is only for information purposes and is not intended to be medical advice.

Updated: 10/30/2012, noline
Thank you! Would you like to post a comment now?


noline on 10/30/2012

:-) Keep an eye out for the next article on the daily steps to reduce stress...

katiem2 on 10/30/2012

Oh boy do I ever relate. Thanks for the list of symptoms of stress and the reminder to diffuse it regaining balance and calm. :)K

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