We often think of stress and anxiety as only affecting our mood and emotions. However, there are many physical symptoms that can’t be ignored. According to Marla Ahlgrimm, anxiety disorders, including PTSD and social anxiety, can take a toll on the body. Keep reading for more insight.
Q: What are some of the physical side-effects of anxiety?
Marla Ahlgrimm: One of the first is a racing heart. When you are feeling anxious or stressed, your adrenal glands kick in and produce more adrenaline than normal. This gives your body the ability to flood your muscles with blood, which is a biological advantage that gives you a bit more strength so that you can fight or flee from threat. Shortness of breath and stomach pain are also common.
Q: Why do I have trouble sleeping when I’m anxious?
Marla Ahlgrimm: Adrenaline might be a culprit here as well. In addition to your mind racing, your body produces more hormones when you’re stressed. Cortisol is another potential contender when it comes to placing blame on your sleepless nights. The added coffee drink in the mornings after you don’t get enough sleep can also contribute to your lack of sleep the next night.
Q: Is sweating normal during times of high stress?
Q: Is it true that anxiety can mess with your menstrual cycle?
Marla Ahlgrimm: When your body produces cortisol, other hormones, such as progesterone and estrogen, are affected. This can result in skipped cycles or even more intense PMS pain.