Anxiety

Brain Facts

Posted by Safe In4 Hub

Chronic anxiety and stress can wreak havoc on the body

This list motivates you to take the small, cumulative steps and actions you need to acknowledge and manage anxiety and fear's influence.

Inhibited Immune System ? During normal stressful reactions to fear and anxiety, the body produces white blood cells. These are the cells which fight infections. While healthy white blood cell count is essential for health, chronic stress and anxiety lead to the overproduction and eventual suppression of white blood cell activity. The result? People living with constant anxiety and stress are more prone to infections of all kinds.

More Frequent Skin Conditions ? Fear's activation of the stress response releases many hormones which can negatively affect skin health. Psoriasis, hives, eczema, and acne may all exacerbate under prolonged anxiety.

Cardiovascular Disorders ? The fear response increases your heart rate and blood pressure. It also increases your body's lipid (fat) levels. Over time, and through repeated stress, these lipids may spike cholesterol levels and prompt atherosclerosis, a disease where the heart's blood vessel's build up with fatty plaques, which may lead to heart disease. The chemical cortisol, released during the stress/fear response, can also lead to weight gain and diabetes. Lastly, certain "indirect" behaviors, such as coping through alcohol, overeating, or substance abuse, also damages heart health.

Gastrointestinal Disorders ? The stress response turns most digestive functions off to better aid the "fight, flight, or freeze" response. As a result, people with anxiety tend to experience diareha, excessive belching or gas, stomach cramps, and may even put themselves at greater risk for developing Irritable Bowel Syndrome (IBS). Stress that is chronic also affects appetite, which may lead to overeating, itself linked to everything from diabetes, strokes, and heart disease.

Resperitory Disorders ? Studies have shown that anxiety can exacerbate asthmatic symptoms. It has also been linked to chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD), with panic attacks reported alongside the condition. Though the relationship may not be causal, anxiety symptoms decrease life quality for people already suffering from respitory disorders.

Musculoskeletal System ? When you are stressed or frightened, the muscles in your body tighten and contract. People with chronic anxiety often report mild to severe muscle aches and pains. Muscular spasms, migraines, and even joint dysfunction are assoicated with chronic muscle tension.

Zexual Dysfunction ? Both men and women's reproductive systems can be negatively affected by chronic stress and anxiety. The stress hormones released can increase menstrual disorders and discomfort, while men can experience erectile dysfunction. Zexual desire can also dissipate for both sexes as a result of the chemical aftereffects of anxiety.

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