AUG 24, 2017 04:19 PM PDT

Why You're More Likely to Get Sick When Stressed

WRITTEN BY: Xuan Pham

Stress is an unavoidable aspect of life. At any age and at any circumstances, we are exposed to stress. While some small amount of stress can be beneficial, too much stress can make you sick, physically and mentally.

In response to stress, the body releases a cascade of molecules, including cortisol and steroids. The body is not built to be exposed to these stress molecules for the long-term. Chronic stress takes a toll on the heart, increasing the risk for high blood pressure, heart disease, and heart attacks. The stomach also doesn't fare well when exposed to stress for a long time. People with chronic stress can develop gastrointestinal problems such as ulcerative colitis, and irritable bowel syndrome. At the immune level, stress can make people prone to infections because stress weakens the immune system. This is why you always seem to catch a cold when under stress.

Fortunately, some stress can be relieved through exercise and getting a good night's rest. Moreover, stress management with a trained counselor may also be beneficial in helping you relieve your stress.
About the Author
  • I am a human geneticist, passionate about telling stories to make science more engaging and approachable. Find more of my writing at the Hopkins BioMedical Odyssey blog and at TheGeneTwist.com.
You May Also Like
NOV 20, 2019
Cardiology
NOV 20, 2019
Parkinson's Disease is Present in the Blood
Parkinson's disease is a progressive disorder of the nervous system. Often starting with a barely noticeable tremor in one hand, the disease affects a...
NOV 20, 2019
Plants & Animals
NOV 20, 2019
Deep-Sea Critters Opportunistically Munch on a Sunken Whale Carcass
The ocean floor can be a lifeless and desolate place to be; so much so that marine animals have taken notice. It’s not often that you’ll find f...
NOV 20, 2019
Space & Astronomy
NOV 20, 2019
Here's What We Know So Far About Titan's Liquid Methane Oceans
Titan is perhaps one of the most captivating moons orbiting Saturn today; so much so that astronomers spent a lot of time studying it when the Cassini miss...
NOV 20, 2019
Plants & Animals
NOV 20, 2019
Triggerfish Are Lobsters' Worst Enemies
Lobsters, just like many other animals, follow migration patterns. They are often observed traveling in large packs, marching in straight lines across the...
NOV 20, 2019
Earth & The Environment
NOV 20, 2019
"Sea-thru" Algorithm Clarifies Underwater Photos
Have you ever tried to take photographs underwater, only to be sorely disappointed by the results? Pictures of vivid underwater scenery usually appear very...
NOV 20, 2019
Health & Medicine
NOV 20, 2019
Climate Crisis Will Impact Children The Most
Many are already feeling the impacts of climate change around the world. Heat waves, severe storms, and flooding have affected humans of all ages. However,...
Loading Comments...