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Man looking stressed sitting at a desk

How Does Stress Impact Mental Health?

Stress Can be More Serious Than You Think

When the brain is working properly, it is a marvel of nature; however, stress can derail many brain functions and make life unbearable. The burning fire that is stress does not only decimate the brain, but sends its flaming tendrils out to the entire body, causing potentially devastating illnesses.

Generalized Anxiety

This condition speaks to stress that is not associated with any particular trigger. This gets actualized in daily life with feelings of dread, unease, palpitations, racing thoughts, changes in appetite, irritability, and muscle pain. The treatment for this condition is especially challenging, as there are no particular habits or behaviors that can be targeted. Medications tend to be the best option for this condition.

Chronic Stress

Occasionally stress continues unrelenting for a long, long time. This is not simply the normal and appropriate anxiety that comes from such events as selling a home, taking an important test, and so forth. The workplace is a common location for this type of stress to thrive. Dealing with angry coworkers, overly demanding bosses, and impatient consumers can wear on any employee. Counseling can be of inestimable benefit in this type of situation, as it gives a perspective of the world outside the job and where it fits in the grand picture of a person’s life. Medication may also be effective in taking the edge of this type of stress.

Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder

Perhaps the most horrifying of all types of stress, PTSD can burn a mind to a cinder without intervention. This disorder occurs after experiencing a traumatic event. The mind becomes so shocked by this experience that it conjures up frighteningly realistic flashbacks of the event. This is living a nightmare to end all nightmares that repeats over and over again. This disorder is common among military veterans and was at one time referred to as “shell shock”. Treatment for this condition is extensive, lengthy, and becomes harder and harder if the longer the disorder is present.

One of the great challenges in medicine is to understand the mind and the causes and effects of stress upon it. For sufferers who are helped by medications and/or therapy, the joy at resuming their lives stress-free is elating. For sufferers still struggling with the mind-burning fire of stress despite treatment, relief cannot come soon enough.