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Can Stress Make You Sick?

When you are stressed out, your body will respond with physical warning signs. Too much stress may trigger headaches, muscle tension, neck or back pain, and sleep problems. When stress is left unchecked, your risk for disease is higher. Chronic stress may lead to high blood pressure, heart disease, obesity and diabetes. Please be aware how stress that we deal with on a daily basis can be detrimental. Stress can affect your body in a number of surprising ways:

Can Stress Make You Sick?

1. You are more likely to get sick. Research suggests that people with high stress levels have lower immune response when exposed to cold viruses. When you are stressed out, your body’s inflammation levels elevate, thus making is easier for you to develop cold symptoms.

2. Wounds may take longer to heal. Women under chronic stress of caregiving for a loved one with Alzheimer’s or dementia took nine days longer to heal from a small skin wound. Dental students healed more slowly during exam time than when they were on vacation. And for couples, a half-hour marital dispute slowed the healing of blisters.

3. You may gain weight. The body releases a hormone called cortisol from your adrenal glands when you are under stress. High levels of cortisol can lead to a thicker waistline.