if you’ve ever experienced a headache after an extended week at work, then you’ve had a glimpse of the physical effects of stress on your body. But beyond that headache, alongside the classic racing heart and strained muscles, stress can cause some lesser-known, even peculiar, symptoms.
The stress doesn’t need to be major to try to to it: Frederick Chen, MD, chief of family practice at Harborview center and professor within the Department of family practice at the University of Washington School of drugs, says even small stressors — aggravating emails, subtweets — have an impact.
“The small stresses of lifestyle can cause daily, low-level stress that activates stress hormones within the body, which ultimately affects how people feel,” he says. “The interesting thing is that we don’t always know why people respond within the way they are doing .”
Often, a long-term build from these minor stresses — when the body doesn’t return to “normal” — causes people to experience weird symptoms. “Acute stress tends to not have an impact on health,” says Sharon Bergquist, MD, a professor of drugs at Emory University School of drugs. “It’s the activation of chronic stress when people don’t return to their baseline of rest and recovery, that tends to affect people.”
Here are a number of the foremost unusual things stress can cause within the body: