Stress can sometimes be a motivator that can help us to shine like a star in most difficult situations but at other times it can be really tough on us. Do you sometimes feel sick when you are stressed out? Want to find out more? Find below 5 facts that you might help you out:
It Weakens the Immune System
Anxiety releases a hormone called cortisol which weakens your immune system. This is for good in periods of intense stress since cortisol can reduce the inflammation caused by anxiety. But cortisol is helpful only for short-termed bursts of stress. For prolonged stress, cortisol continues to suppress stress which in turn weakens your immune system.
It can Decrease Lymphocytes
Stress can decrease the level of lymphocytes in your body which are T-cells or white blood cells that help to fight off the infection and external diseases. The lower is the level, the more your body is at risk and can be exposed to viruses, infection and diseases including the common cold and cold sore.
Older People are More Affected by it
According to a research study by researchers of John Hopkins School of Medicine, the meta-analysis has revealed that people who are sick and have chronic or sub-clinical mild depression can supress their immune system to a higher degree. They had weaker lymphocytes (or T cells) responses to two mitogens which makes them exposed to viruses and infection.
Lack of Social Support Can Cause Stress
A research study by health psychologists from Crnegie Mellon University’s Laboratory for the Study of Stress, Immunity and Disease have reported that social isolation, feelings of loneliness and lack of social support can independently weaken the immune system of students in the college.
It Can Cause a Number of Diseases
It can reach higher levels and can be accompanied by chronic inflammation that can cause the development of a number of immune system diseases such as arthritis, lupus, psoriasis, inflammatory bowel disease, and fibromyalgia. If you sustain your anxiety levels for longer durations, you also have the risk to develop cardiovascular issues such as heart diseases, gastric ulcers, troubled breathing and higher heart rates, type 2 diabetes, various forms of cancers and mental health decline.
It can be avoided by following anxiety reduction strategies such as meditation and yoga. Actually, stress is not all bad since it can be helpful in acute situations. But one should avoid prolonged stress and stay fit and healthy.