Stress affects us all. You may notice the symptoms of stress after a difficult day at work, coping with a challenging relationship or managing your finances. Stress is everywhere and it is impossible to avoid. And while some stress in your life is normal, even beneficial to your well-being, too much stress will wear you down, make you sick and make you suffer physically and mentally.

Stress is a natural reaction to life experiences. We all express stress from time to time. But when your stress responses don’t stop firing, elevated and prolonged stress will take a toll on your body. Northern Colorado Laser and Skin, your massage therapy spa in Greeley, offers the effects of stress on your body.

Immune System

Stress stimulates your immune system, which is a good thing at first. The stimulation helps you heal wounds and avoid infections. However, long-term stress taxes your immune system and reduces your body’s response to foreign invaders. Those of you under chronic stress are much more likely to catch a cold or flu as well as other infections. Stress also increases the amount of time it takes to recover from these ailments.

Muscular System

When you get stressed out, your muscles tense up to protect themselves. Once you relax, your muscles will release again. But when you are constantly under stress, your muscles don’t get the chance to relax. Tensed up muscles are cause for a number of problems including headaches, body aches and back pain.

Over time, you might stop exercising due to muscle pain. Even worse, you might rely on pain medication for relief.

Digestive System

In stressful situations, your liver produces extra blood sugar, which gives you a boost of energy. Which means that is you are under constant stress, your body is overproducing glucose. Chronic stress might increase the chances of developing type 2 diabetes.

With the rush of hormones, increased heartbeat and rapid breathing associated with stress, your digestive system can be disrupted. Chronic stress can lead to such ailments as heartburn and acid reflux. Stress can also affect the way food moves through your body, leading to constipation or diarrhea. Chronic stress may also lead to nausea, vomiting and a stomachache.

Cardiovascular and Respiratory Systems

In stressful situations, you breathe faster in an effort to quickly distribute blood throughout your body. But if you already have a breathing problem such as emphysema or asthma, it makes it harder to breathe.

As your heart pumps faster under stress, your blood vessels constrict and divert oxygen to your muscles, which raises your blood pressure. Chronic or frequent stress makes your heart work too hard and increases your risk of having a stroke or heart attack.

Emotional Impact

People who are stressed out may show signs of anxiety and depression. The continuous presence of stress hormones in the body may alter certain aspects of the nervous system, which can mess with cognitive functioning.

If stress is a part of your life, get relief through massage therapy at Northern Colorado Laser and Skin. Give us a call today.