11 Signs You’re Stressed (But May Not Realize It!)

11 Signs You’re Stressed (But May Not Realize It!)

Unfortunately, in the American culture, stress levels are at an all-time high. From family and relationships to finances and work, many factors contribute to stress. While no one wants to live with stress without recognizing it and taking measures to manage or prevent it, overcoming it won’t be completely possible. Everyone handles stress differently, and not every person will have the same symptoms.

Here, we discuss some common signs of stress:

1. You’re taking up risky vices

Lots of us have a glass of wine at night to unwind or a cocktail at the end of a long week. However, when you find yourself relying on drugs, alcohol, or other substances to relieve pressure, you could be making your way into dangerous territory.

Substances shouldn’t be your go-to way of managing stress. So, find healthy techniques to help you cope with stress, like meditating, reading, podcasts, or music.

2. Your head is throbbing constantly

Carrying around a lot of stress can cause tense muscles, and that literally radiates from head to toe. Tension migraines and headaches are common yet painful side effects of stress. However, people with stress may not even realize they’re related, especially if they’re predisposed to headaches.

If you’re experiencing new headaches altogether, or you’re battling more migraines or headaches than is normal for you, your body may be sending a subtle message that you’re too stressed, which isn’t good.

3. You’re finding it hard to make decisions

Whether you’re deciding to make a left-altering change, such as applying for a new job, or deciding what to have for lunch, being under stress can cause your brain to act weirdly. Stress changes how people make decisions.

Stress may make you focus on more positive outcomes. People may try to block out any negative outcomes when they’re under stress, which sounds good until you take a new job offer without carefully considering the impact on your daily commute, for example.

While stress helps people learn from positive feedback, it impairs their learning from negative feedback, which can be your brain’s way of safeguarding you from stress overload.

a woman sitting in front of a laptop

4. You have weird dreams

There’s a solid reason why sound sleepers report remembering their dreams. The fewer stimuli your brain is responding to during nighttime, the less you’ll be able to recall your dreams. So, if you find yourself waking up with bad, vivid dreams, your brain might subconsciously be working through things.

The most emotional modification takes place during REM (Rapid Eye Movement) sleep. This means while you’re asleep, your brain might be managing stressful, negative emotions.

5. You either sleep too much or not at all

If you’re under tremendous stress, you’ll be looking for a solid night’s sleep. In such cases, you end up taking any daytime worries or anxieties to bed, and your brain knows how to bring them back up when you should be getting the sleep you need.

So, if falling asleep is hard, it’s a clear indication that you’re dealing with stress. However, sleeping too much is also a sign that you’re dealing with something bigger.

If you find it impossible to get out of bed in the mornings of late, or suddenly want to stay in bed all day, you may be experiencing signs of depression, which can be associated with excessive stress. So, talk to your doctor; they’ll help you determine what’s happening and get you back to feeling like yourself again.

 a woman touching her face

6. Your muscles are sore

When you’re under a lot of stress, your muscles tense up involuntarily, leading to body pain. When your body is constantly in ‘flight-or-fight’ mode, it produces a stress hormone known as cortisol.

Similarly, you might have soreness from teeth clenching, and you may battle a range of other pains and aches, including neck and back pain. While regular massage helps, determining ways to reduce the amount of stress in your life is the best way to get back to fighting shape.

7. You can’t drink enough water

If you have started drinking more water, you could be dehydrated — thanks to severe stress. Stress causes your body to pump out those stress hormones, which overworks and fatigues your adrenal glands.

These glands are also in charge of producing aldosterone, which helps regulate your body’s levels of electrolytes and fluid. However, with adrenal fatigue, your body drops the production of aldosterone, leading to low electrolyte levels and triggering dehydration.

While increasing your water intake will help you in the short term, it’s still a chronic issue that must be dealt with immediately.

8. You’re facing digestive issues

While you may think that your brain and stomach don’t have much in common, it’s not true. There’s a clear connection between your stress levels and digestive health, giving a cornucopia of horrible side effects, including constipation, diarrhea, or heartburn.

Stress can increase your body’s production of digestive acids.

Stress and anxiety may allow the body to make more digestive acid, causing heartburn. They may also slow down the clearing of food from the stomach, which causes bloating and gas, and may even increase the number of times your colon contracts, causing diarrhea and cramping.

9. Your period is out of whack

Irregular periods may feel like the norm for many people who menstruate — after all, periods are quite unpredictable. However, dramatic changes in your cycle can signify that you’re enduring a lot of stress, and you must pay attention.

By tracking your emotional and physical symptoms every month, you’ll know if your periods are suddenly absent or come late, which is a definite sign that you could be dealing with emotional stressors.

a man lying on bed during relocation

10. Your memory is shot

With more packed schedules, brushing off issues with our forgetfulness or memory is easy. However, it’s usually a clear sign of a bigger issue: you’re extremely stressed.

Whether you’re forgetting things that once came easily to you or finding it difficult to focus, you might be flat-out frazzled. Focusing on your train of thought (or lack thereof) can help you determine if you have too much on your plate and need to scale back.

11. You’ve got jaw/tooth pain

If you’ve been noticing pain or soreness in your teeth or jaw, you may be going through some pretty intense stress. Bruxism, or grinding your teeth, is something you may be doing whether you realize it or not — a lot of us do it in our sleep, which can lead to serious pain once you wake up.

But don’t worry, you can use Clear Comfort Night Guards’ dentist-recommended mouthguard for teeth grinding.

We understand that grinding is a common issue that many people aren’t even aware of. While grinding your teeth can cause sleep issues and lead to oral damage, it can easily be taken care of by purchasing an online mouthguard for teeth grinding from Clear Comfort Night Guards.

Visit our website now for more information on their night teeth guards for jaw-clenching!

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