Have you ever experienced being so worn out to the point that it makes you frustrated and irritable? Was this accompanied by dark and negative thoughts feeding your fears and nervousness in your mind? Then that means you have experienced stress and anxiety. Stress is a demand that can be felt both in mind and physically whereas anxiety is the feelings of worry. Sometimes it appears separately from stress, but it can also occur along with it.
However, this two mental health issues shouldn’t always be viewed in a negative light. For stress, it can be positive stress and harmful stress. Anxiety and stress can also somewhat help motivate you to do better or to beat a challenge in a way. “Stress is a fact of life, but being stressed out is not. We don’t always have control over what happens to us, says Allen Elkin, Ph.D., director of the Stress Management Counseling Center in New York City.
These two are part of daily life. However, if anxiety and stress develop to the point that they prevent you from doing your daily activities or if it negatively affects your physical and mental health, maybe it’s time for an intervention because this could be more serious. If you have been experiencing anxiety and stress for a very long time, perhaps it is essential to go to a specialist for help.
How Do Stress And Anxiety Feel?
The symptoms of these two can appear in many different ways. Its symptoms can either be physical, psychological, or both. For physical symptoms, see the following:
- You’re experiencing stomach ache even if you didn’t eat anything spoiled or there is no diarrhea.
- The muscles in your body are too tensed and strained.
- There is a terrible headache, or you’ll feel symptoms of a migraine for no logical reason.
- Your breathing is increased, and your heart rate will inevitably go up.
- You will be sweating a lot which is accompanied by dizzy spells.
- It is a nervous reaction, and you will be urinating a lot.
- You will most definitely experience diarrhea, too.
- There is a sudden change in your sleeping and eating patterns. You might be sleeping a lot and laying in bed most of the day, or you won’t be sleeping much at all. As for the eating, it can go one in two ways – you may be overeating which can cause weight gain, or you’re not eating much which can make you lose weight. Both conditions are incredibly unhealthy and medically alarming.
- You will be fatigued all the time.
As mentioned earlier, psychological or mental symptoms may also occur. Some of them are the following:
- constant feelings of worry
- being distracted or losing focus
- anger issues
If the said are experienced for a long time, it may negatively affect one’s health like developing heart diseases, diabetes, and mental illnesses like depression.
Common Causes Of Stress And Anxiety
“Stress is a direct result of negative emotions that are out of control,” says stress consultant and life coach Elaine Sanders. Normal levels of anxiety and stress may disappear over some time for a lot of people. However, some anxiety and stress do not. Usually, what decides this is the cause of the stressor.
Some of the common causes of stress and anxiety combined may include:
- moving to a new place or going to a new school
- starting on a new job
- experiencing illness or injury
- loss of a friend or a loved one
- having a child or experiencing childbirth
- other significant life events
Drugs And Medications
Sometimes taking medications may worsen the said mental health conditions. It is because of the content of the drugs that may have stimulants in it. Constant drinking of caffeine and usage of drugs like cocaine can worsen your problem.
Some of the said drugs that can worsen it are medications for thyroid and diet pills.
How To Cope With Stress And Anxiety
Cope with stress and anxiety through breathing. “Breathing from your diaphragm oxygenates your blood, which helps you relax almost instantly,” says Robert Cooper, Ph.D. You can also try other self-help methods as well. But if you can’t improve through self-help techniques, then you need the assistance of a specialist. A therapist, counselor or psychologist specializing in stress and anxiety cases can help you with managing and coping with your mental health issue. A program will be designed for you, and hopefully, in 10 sessions or less, you can start functioning better.