Stress is a natural reaction to everyday life experiences. Stress is something almost everyone experiences from time to time.
Stress is caused by the same receptors in the brain that trigger the flight or fight response. Stress may come in different forms for different people.
For some it might be the stress of a busy and hectic work schedule, for some it may be the stress of a relationship, for students it may be the stress of an exam or a test, no matter what the reason is when our mind detects a certain threat, the fight or flight response or stress is triggered.
In daily life, everyone feels some stress which is not bad for our health, but if you feel stressed for long periods of times in situations that aren’t that stressful, you may have a problem of chronic stress.
Chronic stress is very bad for the human mind and body, and it can have some very adverse effects on our health. Here is a list of ways stress affects our bodies, minds and our hair.
Effects of Stress on the Mind
1. Stress can hurt your memory
Stress has very bad effects on the mind, among which weak memory is a major effect. Chronic stress can really damage our ability to remember stuff.
Chronic stress takes a huge toll on the hippocampus of our brain, which among many other things is largely associated with memory and learning.
In this way, by damaging the hippocampus, stress causes memory loss and makes you forgetful in the long run.
2. Stress can reduce brain cells
According to a recent study conducted by the Rosalind Franklin University of Medicine and Science, it was discovered that even a single stressful event could kill a significant amount of new neurons in the brain’s hippocampus.
And apart from controlling memory functions, the hippocampus is also one of the two areas of the brain responsible for neurogenesis, or in other words the formation of new brain cells.
So, chronic stress decreases the capabilities of our mind.
3. Stress increases the risk of mental illness
Stress is a very serious mental condition, and it also significantly increases the chances of developing severe mental diseases like depression, hypertension, anxiety, and many others.
According to a study published in Molecular Psychiatry, researchers discovered that chronic stress changes the brain in the long term.
According to the research, these changes might play a critical role in the development of many mental disorders, including depression and various other emotional disorders.
The researchers also discovered that chronic stress also has negative effects on the brain’s hippocampus, which is a brain organ located in medial temporal lobe
Effect of Stress on the Body
1. Stress can weaken the immune system
In short immediate situations, stress can actually stimulate the immune system. But over longer periods of time, stress hormones such as cortisol will weaken your immune system.
Chronic stress can reduce the response of your body to foreign invaders and diseases.
People who suffer from chronic stress are usually more susceptible to viral diseases like the flu and the common cold. People who feel chronic stress are also at a higher risk of developing infections.
And chronic stress can also increase your recovery time from injuries and diseases.
2. Stress can affect the digestive system
Chronic stress can also upset your digestive system.
If you feel stressed all the time, you are at a higher risk to have heartburn because of an increase in your stomach acid.
Stress doesn’t really cause ulcers, but it can cause existing ulcers to flare up. Chronic stress also affects the way food moves through your body.
And it can lead to many other digestion related health problems like diarrhea, stomachache or constipation. Stress can also make you experience symptoms like nausea and vomiting.
3. Stress can cause diabetes
When you are under stress, your liver makes extra blood sugar to give you an energy boost.
If you are affected by chronic stress, then your body may not be able to keep up with this extra surge of glucose, which can increase your blood glucose levels dangerously.
Chronic stress increases your risk of developing type 2 diabetes. And diabetes is a disease that can actively take years of your life.
4. Stress can cause heart disease
Chronic stress is bad for our cardiovascular health, and it can actually significantly increase the risk of heart disease in people.
When you stay under chronic stress for a long time, your heart pumps blood faster, and stress hormones like cortisol cause your blood vessels to constrict more oxygen to your muscles.
But this effect also increases your blood pressure.
The heart of people who suffer from chronic stress frequently stays under this condition for a long time and has to work very hard which increases your blood pressure and your risk of having a heart attack or a stroke.
5. Stress can cause respiratory disorders
Among many other problems, chronic stress also causes problems for the human respiratory system.
During a stress response, your breathing becomes faster to increase the distribution of oxygen-rich blood to your body quickly.
This effect can make it harder for you to breathe if you already have a breathing problem like asthma or emphysema.
Effects of Stress on the Hair
1. Stress can cause hair fall
Stress causes many problems in the human body, both physically and mentally. Chronic stress is also very bad for the health of our hair.
People who suffer from chronic stress are at a higher risk of losing their hair.
Stress increases hair fall and it even causes our hair to get thinner and weaker. Chronic stress can also lead to a dry and itchy scalp.
There are many ways to reduce stress, some people opt for pharmaceutical drugs, but they have a lot of adverse side effects.
A great natural remedy with no long term side effect is cannabis. One of the main effects of cannabis is stress relief. So, before you go for any other solution also check out some cannabis strain for natural and organic stress relief.