In our “always on” culture, being in a perpetual state of stress can start to feel normal for many of us. As our schedules get busier and busier, we adjust to a more hectic lifestyle without even realizing that we seriously need to slow the heck down.
You may not feel frazzled, but there’s a good chance there are some subtle ways your body is telling you that you’re stressed, and they can impact you both mentally and physically.
It’s scary but true: There are plenty of silent signs stress is making you sick, or just messing with your well-being in ways you don’t fully realize.
Here are some telltale signs that stress is messing with you, even if you feel perfectly fine.
1. You’ve Got Jaw or Tooth Pain
If you’ve been noticing soreness or pain in your jaw or teeth, you might be under some pretty intense stress. Grinding your teeth, known as bruxism, is something you may be doing whether you realize it or not – many of us do it in our sleep, which can lead to serious pain during waking hours.
2. Your Memory Is Shot
As our schedules get more and more packed, it’s easy to brush off issues with our memory or forgetfulness, but it’s often a clear sign of a bigger problem: You’re too stressed.
Whether you’re finding it hard to focus, or you’re forgetting things that once came easily to you, you might be flat-out frazzled. Paying attention to your train of thought (or lack thereof) can help determine if you’ve got too much on your plate and whether you need to seriously scale back.
3. You’re Facing Digestive Issues
You may not think your stomach and your brain have much in common, but it turns out that digestive health is very closely linked to your stress levels, giving a cornucopia of unpleasant side effects including heartburn, diarrhea, or constipation.
Deborah Rhodes, MD, a Mayo Clinic internal medicine physician, told Parents.com that stress can up your body’s production of digestive acids.
4. You Can’t Drink Enough Water
If you find yourself heading to the water cooler more often and can’t figure out why you could be dehydrated thanks to too much stress.
Dr. Robert Kominiarek, DO, a family physician in Springboro, Ohio, explained to The Huffington Post in 2014 that stress causes your body to “pump out” those stress hormones, causing your adrenal glands to be overworked and fatigued.
The adrenal glands are also in charge of producing a hormone called aldosterone, which helps regulate your body’s levels of fluid and electrolytes. “As adrenal fatigue progresses, your body’s production of aldosterone drops, triggering dehydration and low electrolyte levels,” according to Dr. Kominiarek.
So while upping your H2O intake will help in the short term, it’s still a chronic problem that needs to be addressed.
5. You’re Having Weird Dreams
Sound sleepers rarely report remembering their dreams, and there’s a solid reason why: The fewer stimuli your brain is responding to at night, the less you’ll be able to recall your dreams. So if you find yourself waking up with vivid or otherwise bad dreams, your brain might be subconsciously working through things you haven’t yet dealt with during daytime hours.
There are actually 21 signs on this list and if you’d like to read the full article written by Arielle Tschinkel for MSN.com, you can click here!
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