Constant stress and anxiety can lead to serious health problems, many of which require visiting a physician as soon as possible. A doctor is necessary to get prescription medications designed to relieve intense anxiety that causes long-term symptoms. While everyone occasionally has a stressful event to cope with for a few days or weeks, when anxious feelings continue, it is time to contact a psychologist or general practitioner.

Sleeplessness

Stress raises the adrenaline in the body to help someone escape physical danger. Unfortunately, modern life gives people a mental type of stress that is not easy to get away from. Instead of feeling anxious because of attempting to flee a wild animal, individuals are dealing with stressful events at work or home. The result of this excess adrenaline is the inability to sleep at night.

Indigestion

When stressed, many individual’s bodies excrete additional digestive juices into their stomachs, leading to indigestion. Frequent indigestion makes it difficult to consume a normal meal along with creating symptoms such as burping, nausea or diarrhea. Large amounts of digestive acids in the stomach can cause additional health problems, including acid reflux or ulcers. Individuals with an upset stomach may avoid consuming nutritious foods, causing them to feel worse.

Headaches

Anxious feelings each day can cause someone to develop excruciating headaches. The headaches are often a result of high blood pressure, insomnia and muscle tension. When someone feels stressed on a daily basis, they may tense their tendons and muscles in the neck and face, causing jaw clenching. In addition, lack of sleep and hypertension causes cluster or migraine headaches that are difficult to control with over-the-counter medications.

Suicidal Thoughts

Anyone experiencing suicidal thoughts due to stress should contact a doctor immediately for assistance. Thoughts about suicide are an emergency that requires fast intervention. Anxiousness can escalate in the mind and body until someone thinks the only way out is their death. A family physician or psychologist can admit a patient for treatment to provide therapy and medications to alleviate poor thinking patterns such as suicidal thoughts.

When to Get Help

The best time to get help for stress and anxiety is before the feelings become overwhelming. Physicians now have better ways to control difficult emotions to ensure patients do not begin to have additional health problems. There is no need to feel embarrassed or self-conscious concerning asking for help because many individuals receive treatment for anxiety and stress.

Informational credit for this article to Matthew Case, a PhD candidate with a Bachelor’s in Psychology, who is currently involved in clinical research on chronic anxiety.

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