Have you noticed yourself feeling under the weather more often than you used to and started wondering what your cough means? You might want to consider the possibility that excess stress could be making you sick. Although there are several ways you can prevent stress-related illnesses, from instituting a stronger work-life balance to getting into a special morning routine to reduce stress, understanding the culprits behind your symptoms first is essential.
Here are five warning signs that could indicate stress has been leading to sickness.
1. You’ve Been Getting Colds More Frequently
One surefire sign of excess stress is if your immune system seems to have taken a sudden nosedive for the worse. If you’ve been getting colds more frequently than you used to and have needed to stock up on extra cold prevention meds just in case, it could be a sign that your immune system cannot cope with current levels of stress.
2. You’re Experiencing Persistent Emotional Symptoms
Not all warning signs of stress are purely related to colds and other illnesses – in fact, emotional symptoms are common as well. Any of the following emotional changes, especially when persistent, could point to overly high stress as the culprit.
- Frustration and agitation
- Feelings of anxiety and trouble calming down
- Constantly becoming overwhelmed throughout the day
- Low self-esteem
- Developing anti-social tendencies
- Feelings of depression or loneliness
3. You Have Stomach Problems Such as Nausea, Diarrhea or Constipation
Sometimes stress can have physical manifestations. For example, people who have never had gastrointestinal conditions but who suddenly start to experience severe stomach problems such as nausea, diarrhea, or constipation on a regular basis may have their high-stress levels to blame.
4. You’ve Lost Interest in Your Hobbies and Pleasure Activities
A major warning sign that your stress is starting to get to you is losing interest in the hobbies and pleasure activities you once loved. If you find yourself suddenly losing interest in any of the following, you may want to take a serious look at the stressors in your life.
- Time with friends and family
- Relaxing or pleasurable activities
5. You Find It Hard To Focus and Your Mind Is Always Racing
Last but not least, consider that simply not being able to concentrate can be a sign of excess stress and its resultant wellness impact. If you constantly find it difficult to focus on various tasks, you’re experiencing frequent heart palpitations and you feel as though your mind is always racing, there’s a good chance you’re currently overloaded with to-do items or feel overwhelmed and stressed out by other factors in your life.
Unfortunately, it’s not uncommon for overwhelming levels of stress on a regular basis to start taking a physical toll on the body. If you’ve recently experienced any of these five warning signs and have been feeling under the weather more often than you used to, it’s possible that your stress levels could be making you sick. Once you’ve identified the cause, you can start working towards promoting a better balance in your life, for your mental and physical health.