While the world still has a strong stigma against mental health, there are more efforts today being made to understand many of the different mental health disorders. Much of the younger generation has worked to help the older generation understand how things like depression and anxiety effect the lives of people who have these disorders. More and more people are beginning to understand the effects of these things on the mind, but what about their effects on the body? How does something that is entirely brain related effect your physical being? These are the things we often don’t think about, unless of course, they are things that affect us personally. Mind aside, what are the physical effects of anxiety?
When you have an extended period of time where your mind is riddled with anxiety, it can begin to take its toll on your body. I’m not talking about the migraines and digestive issues that are extremely common side effects of chronic anxiety (both of which I experience on a regular), I’m talking about common things people feel all the time… from physical activity. Anxiety is exhausting. All you want to do is lay in bed, because even the simplest of tasks completely wear you out. Your arms and legs feel like you did an intense work out, your feet ache with every step, your neck is sore, your shoulders throb, your back is stiff, and that’s the stuff easiest to manage. Soon after, your heart is racing, your head is throbbing, your whole body shakes and twitches, and you can hear your blood pounding in your ears. Your throat and mouth are dry and your body can’t seem to decide if it’s hot or cold. It leaves you feeling drained, and it seems like there is a fog surrounding you, dulling your senses. All you want to do is sleep, but you’re far too anxious for that. So, there you sit, trapped in your own mind, feeling your own body slowly turn against you.
Anxiety is far more than a simple disease of the mind; it effects every single part of you. So, don’t say that anxiety is an excuse to lay around all day. Don’t say that anxiety is easily overcome. Don’t say that anxiety is all in your head. It’s draining and exhausting. It’s unbelievably difficult to manage. It goes much further than just the brain. Instead of belittling us for falling down, applaud us for having the strength to get up.