By Pierre Mouchette | Bits-n-Pieces
It is the middle of the night, and you are exhausted but cannot sleep. You are at home, so it is a comfortable, sleep-friendly environment, but nagging thoughts keep you awake. Maybe there is a project at work that you cannot stop thinking about, or you suddenly remembered an awkward conversation you had. What you are doing is fixating on something that you cannot change, and, as much as you would like to, you just cannot let it go. Does this scenario sound familiar? If it does, you are experiencing stress!
The adverse impact of stress on your mind and body is bad news. The good news is that there are ways to diminish stress's effects. Figuring out what stress does to your body and the best exercises to de-stress can help you stop fixating on disruptive thoughts, which in turn, will allow you to get a good night's rest.
The Impact Of Stress On Your Body
Your body releases cortisol when it feels threatened or stressed. Cortisol is a hormone that increases sugar in your bloodstream, increases glucose in your brain, and slows down your immune and digestive systems. A natural fight-or-flight response to danger and your stress response can also have lasting unintended effects. That is, when your brain perceives inconveniences as threats, it continuously releases cortisol, which negatively affects your physical health. Chronic stress is harmful to your body. Headaches, digestion issues, muscle tension, fatigue, frequent bouts of sickness, and sleep issues are linked to chronic stress.
The effect of stress on your mental health will also impact your mental well-being. This affects your mental health, which manifests in mood changes, feelings of anxiousness, sadness, restlessness, being overwhelmed, irritability, loss of motivation, and an inability to calm your mind.
Stress impacts your sleep both physically and mentally. Fortunately, your brain and body can best manage stress after a good night's sleep, so being stressed and having trouble falling asleep can feel like you are stuck in a negative cycle.
While it might be impossible to negate all stressors in your life, there are ways to manage them so that they do not significantly impact your overall health.
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