Signs and Symptoms of Stress

Unless we are faced with a sudden and traumatic event, such as a death, job loss or accident, we don’t normally see stress.  It can creep up on us as we get used to what is going on around us and accept it without realising how much it is actually affecting us.

It is, therefore, necessary to look out for the signs and symptoms of stress in your life.  These include:

Behavioural Symptoms

  • Excessive tiredness or lethargy
  • Inability to sleep
  • Eating too much or too little
  • Withdrawing from others
  • Putting things off for no real reason
  • Nervous habits (eg nail-biting, picking at the skin around the thumbs)
  • Becoming more reliant on alcohol or drugs to relax

Physical Symptoms

  • Pain (eg Fibromyalgia)
  • A feeling of being run down
  • Frequent colds or sickness
  • Chest pain, rapid heart rate
  • Irritable Bowels – constipation or diarrhoea
  • Loss of sex drive

Mental Health Symptoms

  • Depression
  • Anxiety
  • A feeling of loneliness and isolation
  • Mood swings
  • Irritability

Cognitive Symptoms

  • Lack of concentration]
  • Memory problems
  • Overthinking
  • Negative thinking
  • Anxious or racing thoughts
  • Constant worrying