Kim Castro
December 7, 2022

What are the key signs of stress affecting mental health?

Ever feel like you’re struggling to keep your head above water?

We do too, and it’s totally normal.

The levels of stress have seen a record-breaking high during the pandemic. Because of this, more and more people are experiencing anxiety and panic attacks. Life is a lot of work, and we all have a million things going on at once. However, it’s important to remember to take care of yourself so that you can be the best you possible.

Stress affects us all.

You may notice symptoms of stress when rushing a project with a tight deadline, disciplining your kids, when managing your finances, or when coping with challenges in your relationships. Stress is everywhere; and while a little stress is normal for everyone, too much of it can wear you down. The first step to controlling stress is to know the symptoms of stress and understand how it is affecting your mental health.

Here are the key signs of stress affecting your mental health.

Physical symptoms of stress include:

  • Low energy
  • Headaches
  • Upset stomach, including diarrhea, constipation, and nausea
  • Aches, pains, and tense muscles
  • Chest pain and rapid heartbeat
  • Insomnia

Emotional symptoms of stress include:

  • Becoming easily agitated, frustrated, and moody
  • Feeling overwhelmed, as if you are losing control or need to take control
  • Having a hard time relaxing and quieting your mind
  • Feeling bad about yourself (low self-esteem), and feeling lonely, worthless, and depressed
  • Avoiding others
  • Depressed
  • Uninterested in life
  • Like you've lost your sense of humor

Stress can also make you behave in certain ways like:

  • Finding it hard to make decisions
  • Unable to concentrate
  • Unable to remember things, or make your memory feel slower than usual
  • Constantly worrying or having feelings of dread
  • Snapping at people
  • Biting your nails consistently
  • Picking at or itching your skin consistently
  • Grinding your teeth or clenching your jaw consistently

There are lots of breathing exercises you can do to help relax.

One of the best ones is belly breathing; it’s simple to learn and easy to do. If you have never done deep breathing exercises before, this is a great place to start.

Belly breathing, also known as diaphragmatic breathing, is a great way to relieve stress, drop into your body, and relax. Diaphragmatic breathing is intended to help you use the diaphragm correctly while breathing.

As you ponder on the ups and downs of life, the daily challenges, and the mental health stigmas, give this a try:

1. Sit or lie down in a comfortable, quiet place

2. Put one hand on your chest and the other on your stomach, just below the ribs

3. Inhale slowly through the nose - try not to let your chest move, instead concentrate on sending the air into the palm that's on your stomach

4. Exhale slowly through the mouth - purse the lips into an 'o' as if you are going to take a sip of water through a straw

5. Repeat at least 3 times!

Try this breathing exercise for 5–10 minutes at a time, around three to four times each day. Just imagine that each breath is sweeping away your stress, and can help calm your anxiety in just a minute or two.

We hope you found this helpful.

If you want more content around mental health and well-being, follow us on social media or subscribe to our blog.

Your mental health matters.
Check out our website or follow us on social media for more content
around mental health and wellness.
Our goal is to spread awareness around mental health and well-being. If you found this helpful, please feel free to share this with someone you think would benefit from this.
P.S.: This blog was created with AI software as a tool to supplement the author, accompanied by Wellnite Staff overview and supervision.
Recent blog posts
All Posts

Bottling Up Emotions: How to Let Go

Read more

What is Compassion Fatigue?

Read more

Healthy Coping Skills You Can Try

Read more