We all know about the more common symptoms of stress. Feeling frazzled and overwhelmed can raise blood pressure, suppress the immune system, increase the risk of heart attack and stroke, contribute to infertility, and speed up the aging process. Long-term stress can even rewire the brain, leaving you more vulnerable to anxiety and depression.
Obviously none of these are good. But stress can also cause some not so common symptoms. Watch for these unusual signs that you may be under too much stress.
A Sore and Achy Jaw
A sore jaw can be a sign of teeth grinding or clenching which many people do subconsciously when they are under stress. Visit your dentist. Many times they can see signs of wearing of the back teeth from grinding. Ask your dentist about a mouth guard to wear at night. Up to 70% of people who use one say it helped reduce or stop their grinding.
You may be stressed during the week, and then relax on the weekends. A sudden drop in stress can bring on migraines. To minimize these headaches, stick closely to your usual weekday sleeping and eating schedule.
More stressful women tend to get more painful cramps than those that are less stressed. Stress can upset the balance of hormones. Severe stress can even alter your cycles, causing irregular periods. Exercise is good medicine to soothe cramps and relieve stress.
Most of the time, dreams get progressively more positive as you sleep so we wake up happier than before you went to bed, says psychologists. But when stressed, you wake up more often, disrupting this process and allowing odd dreams. Try to get 7 to 8 hours of sleep per night, and avoid stimulants like coffee, alcohol, chocolate, and other caffeine before bed.