Stress symptoms in women can be very different from the Stress Symptoms Experienced by Men as you may already read in our last article. But, How to Help a Woman with Stress Symptoms? Is it different from how a partner can help a man undergoing stress? Let’s find out.
Before anything, though, let’s touch on stress.
What is Stress?
At some point in our lives, likely we all have experienced stress. A study has found at least 33% of people are reported to be living with ongoing stress. In the study, women were more often shown to have increased levels of stress.
Stress occurs due to a chemical reaction in the brain. The condition dates back a long time to our ancestors when they had to live by the fight or flight method of life and had to be wary of predators. The release of adrenaline would help us outrun or outsmart them and keep us out of harm’s way. Small amounts of stress and adrenaline are designed to keep us safe such as enabling us to get out of the way of danger.
But, as the world changes and expectations and demands are so much higher on everyone. Many more people are experiencing stress for long periods of time, and this is creating many more problems in our bodies.
Stress can lead to a complete physical or mental breakdown in the body, and it can also lead to several other more severe conditions if left untreated.
That is why it is important to look at the symptoms caused by stress so that you will be able to recognize if you or someone you know may be suffering from the condition. Especially, if your partner, wife or a friend undergoing stress symptoms.
Causes of Stress in Women
Several factors can cause stress, including family problems, work overload, fertility issues, financial problems, unemployment, moving to a new house or changing job.
There may be other things that are not on the list that can cause stress, too, and not all of them will cause stress for every person.
Not to forget, there are a lot of women who spend too much time comparing themselves to others and thinking if someone else isn’t stressed about it so not doing anything about it until it causes more severe long-term problems. So be sure you don’t compare your reactions to other females.
They are your stresses, and you are the only one that knows what stress is like, and if it seems out of the ordinary for you, then it is probably best to get seen to by a medical professional. No two women are the same when its come to stress, and what is stressful for one person may not be for another.
Stress Symptoms in Women
There are many symptoms of stress, and they can manifest in both physical and emotional symptoms.
In this article, the symptoms are broken down into three different categories: Physical signs, emotional symptoms and symptoms specific only to women.
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Physical Symptoms of Stress in Females
Research studies have shown that acne can increase when stress levels do. This is partly due to the fact that women with higher levels of stress will touch their face more often increasing the bacteria in those areas.
Stress can be a common trigger for headaches and migraine, and one study showed that of women presenting with chronic headaches and migraine, that 45% of those were caused by stress.
- Chronic Pain
Some studies have shown that a few women suffering from Chronic Pain have been shown to have increased levels of cortisol, which is a hormone released when the body is stressed.
- Frequent Illnesses
Due to the toll, the stress can take on a person’s immune system; commonly, female suffering from higher levels of stress are more likely to be sick more often.
- Digestive Issues
Often issues like diarrhea and constipation can be caused by high-stress levels.
- Increased Heart Rate & Beats
It is a very common symptom of stress that your heart rate and heartbeat will increase, which is due to the rush of adrenaline that is pumped into the body.
This is on a short term is okay and helps get the blood pumping to run faster and think smarter, but is becoming more of a problem now we are experiencing it more often.
Many females experience an increase in sweating when they experience increased stress levels.
- Bleeding Gums
Bleeding from gums can be partly because some people when stressed clench their jaws or grind their teeth. But, scientists say it can also be due to the stress hormone cortisol affects the immune system.
- Itchy Skin
Many females that experience stress can experience itchy skin.
- Muscle Tension
Around 30% of females experiencing stress often indicate that they are dealing with muscle tension and stiffness.
Emotional Symptoms of Stress in Females
Let’s explore the emotional stress signs and symptoms now.
- Fatigue and Trouble Sleeping
Women presenting with higher levels of stress quite often have trouble sleeping many struggles to wind down to get to sleep, and many will wake up constantly through the night.
Without sleep, this increases the fatigue but often, regardless of how much sleep has been had sufferers of stress will find themselves feeling fatigued all the time.
- Changes in Libido
Quite often, when stress levels are high women find themselves uninterested or not having enough energy to partake in sexual activities.
- Changes in Appetite
When stress increases in a person, they can find their appetite changing either way. Some women may not feel like eating at all, and some women will find themselves unable to stop eating food. This change to appetite can be associated with certain medications and other conditions as well.
Several studies have indicated that sometimes depression and depressive episodes can be bought on by an increase in stress or long-term stressful periods.
- Becoming Agitated and Moody
This is because of the adrenaline that is constantly coursing through your body. That makes the stressed person a lot more on edge.
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- Bad or Weird Dreams
Stress can cause many imbalances in our hormones which can cause imbalances in our sleep and our dreams. These dreams can both cause sleeping problems and be caused by sleeping problems.
This symptom of stress is far more common in women than it is in men.
Stress Symptoms Specific to Women
Let’s explore the signs and symptoms specific to only females.
Many women who have high levels of stress will have issues falling pregnant.
Unfortunately, women having problems falling pregnant will also become more stressed, which can cause a never-ending cycle if treatment is not investigated.
Premenstrual syndrome is a lot more dominant in women who are experiencing higher levels of stress.
Bad Period Cramps
Women who suffer from stress are found to be twice as likely to have painful period cramps.
While there are many studies to show the link between stress and the above symptoms, there is still much more to learn about stress, and a large number of studies still taking place and many more yet to come.
With our ever-changing society and the increase in demand for instant products and replies, the levels of stress will continue to increase. But, when it’s time to draw a line and convince her to see a doctor?
Let’s find out.
When Should She See The Doctor for Stress Symptoms?
If you feel or think that your love one is experiencing a number of these symptoms, it is recommended to see your doctor. Your doctor will be best to help diagnose what is going on and what the best course of action will be for you/her to reduce your stress levels.
There may be other symptoms of stress that have not been listed. The symptoms listed can also be indicative of several different conditions. They should all be discussed with your doctor to make sure they are due to stress and not another underlying condition.
The doctor may recommend several options for you. This may include meditations, mindfulness exercises, relaxation techniques, a personal wellness plan and in more severe cases, even a referral to a counsellor or psychologist. If the symptoms are severe, you may even consider seeing a Psychiatrist.
Tip: Art Therapy can help to manage stress better.
Don’t be afraid to go back or even to another doctor for a second opinion if you find the recommendation is not working.
Long term stress can be very harmful to the body and cause a lot more issues than short term stress. Stress will start to affect the immune system and cause other illnesses if it is not taken care of.
How To Help a Women with Stress
Let’s gather everything we learned so far, and let’s be practical on how to help your wife, partner or friend who may undergoing stress-related situation.
It is essential you be aware of the above signs so that you can recognize stress in yourself or in others. If you feel someone you know might be suffering from stress, try to talk to them and encourage them to do something relaxing with you.
Often it is tough to talk about stress or admit that you have too much stress in your life. So, if you can help someone else deal with it, you may help them in more ways than you realize as stress can often be linked to many much more serious conditions that are not being addressed.
To avoid becoming too stressed you should always make sure that you take time for yourself. Do something you enjoy, often as you can, and take deep breaths and stretch regularly. Give yourself a break, be kind to yourself and have a holiday if you can. Don’t be too hard on yourself.
As always, a medical doctor is the best to give you complete advice on your specific unique situation.
Stress is a very common condition these days, and it is not considered weak to suffer from it or need to seek help.
Stress can affect anyone at any time. The best way to prepare yourself with how to deal with it is to know what symptoms to look for in the first place.
Tip: Here are the Best Supplements for Stress.