How Stress Affects the Body

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Chronic Stress and Your Health

While it's normal to experience elevated levels of stress every now and then, too much stress can wreak havoc on your body. The health experts at Kirby Medical Center are here to shed some light on the ways that chronic stress can affect your health.

Mental & Emotional Health

When your body’s stress response is triggered for an extended period of time, it can be increasingly difficult for your body’s hormone levels to return to normal. This causes stress hormones like adrenaline and cortisol to continue to affect your body, including your brain. This can lead to the following mental health issues:

  • Mood swings
  • Anger
  • Anxiety
  • Depression
  • Increased irritability
  • Impaired decision-making skills
  • Issues concentrating
  • Memory problems

Cardiovascular Health

Exposure to stress hormones can also have a significant impact on your cardiovascular health as well. In fact, high stress levels increase your risk of developing the following heart health issues:

  • High blood pressure
  • Elevated heart rate
  • High cholesterol
  • Heart attack
  • Stroke
  • Heart disease

Digestive Health

Another common area for people to experience stress-related health issues is the gastrointestinal system. With millions of neurons that communicate with the brain, there is a direct relationship between your stress levels and your gut health.

Too much stress can cause the following gastrointestinal symptoms:

  • Heartburn
  • Burping
  • Acid reflux
  • Muscle spasms in the bowels
  • Esophageal spasms
  • Diarrhea
  • Nausea and vomiting
  • Constipation
  • Stomach aches
  • Decreased appetite

If you have concerns when it comes to your stress levels and how you can better regulate them, reach out to your primary care provider.

Contact Kirby Medical Center

At Kirby Medical Center, we are dedicated to helping our community learn how to stay healthy and safe. If you are concerned about your health risks and the types of vaccines that are right for you, contact Kirby Medical Center at 217-762-2115 to learn more about how we can assist with all your healthcare needs

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