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General Signs and Symptoms of a Stressed Person

The first step in stress management is recognition and acceptance that you are stressed. But in order for you to know whether you are stressed or not, you have to know the changes in your body that are attributed to stress. People, however, respond to stress differently. Some may show physical symptoms while others manifest their stress emotionally. Cognitive and behavioral changes can also be a good indication that a person is stressed. Still, the intensity of the signs and symptoms manifested depends from one person to another. Generally, though, signs of a stressed person are the following:

Physiological Symptoms (changes in the body)

  • Indigestion
  • Eczema
  • Loss of sex drive
  • Dizziness
  • Nausea
  • Constipation or diarrhea
  • Rapid heart beat
  • Body pains: neck, (lower) back, chest, torso, arms
  • Recurring colds
  • Weight loss as a result of a decrease in appetite and irregular sleeping habits
  • Weight gain as a result of an increase in appetite

Emotional Symptoms (changes in the behavior)

  • Irritability
  • Short tempered
  • General unhappiness or depression
  • Feeling overwhelmed
  • Moodiness
  • Inability to relax
  • Agitation (blowing things out of proportion)
  • Sense of isolation and loneliness
  • Feeling tense. It sometimes includes dry mouth, a thumping heart, excessive sweating, and a ‘knot’ in the stomach

Cognitive Symptoms (changes in the way a person is thinking)

  • Constant worrying
  • Racing thoughts
  • Anxiety over simple things
  • Negative perception of things
  • Memory problems
  • Inability to make decisions
  • Inability to focus or concentrate due to many things that go through the mind

Behavioral Symptoms (changes in the way a person acts)

  • Oversleeping
  • Inability to sleep properly because of worries going through the mind
  • Change in eating habits (eating less or eating more; loss or gain of appetite)
  • Neglecting responsibilities
  • Procrastinating
  • Isolation of yourself from others
  • Habit attributed to stress such as pacing, irritability, nail biting, and teeth grinding when asleep
  • Drinking alcohol, smoking and using drugs to relax

Take note that the mentioned signs and symptoms can also be caused by other medical and psychological problems. Consult your doctor when you are experiencing any signs of stress and get a full evaluation of your real condition. Your doctor should be able to determine if you are stressed and rule out other possible causes of these symptoms.

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