Why your pain is among the physical effects from stress electricity year invented


We often complain of the stress of work or life, yet, what is stress, really? The term ‘stress’ is most often used to describe feelings of nervousness, tension, anxiety, or being under pressure. These are all psychological aspects of stress. They express feelings. Yet people also experience physical effects from stress. Amongst the most common physical effects of stress, we count headaches, upset stomach, diarrhea or constipation, nausea, and low energy levels.

A study conducted on a number of healthy young men was aimed at determining their response to pain when subjected to psychological stress. The study found that when the subjects were subjected to acutely stressful situations, their sensitivity towards pain tended to change. The more stress they were under, the more difficult they found it to modulate pain. This implies that acute stress impacts your pain experience negatively. In other words, the more stressed you are, the worse pain you experience.

This does not mean that your pain is actually worse, however. In fact, the study revealed that there was no visible effect on the subjects’ pain threshold or their tolerance. What happened, however, was that their pain modulation decreased. In other words, there was a decrease in the body’s pain inhibition capability.

Your body has a built-in ability to manage stress. Stress itself can be physiological, psychological, or environmental in nature. This response to stress is automatic, and something we have no control over. It is known as the NeuroEndoMetabolic (NEM) Stress Response.

During a period of constant stress, the NEM Stress Response requires more cortisol, so more and more cortisol is manufactured from pregnenolone in order to meet the need. The result is that less of this crucial hormone is available for the manufacture of other essential hormones. As a result, a hormonal imbalance can occur.

Prolonged cortisol production suppresses the immune system and inflammatory pathways, thereby putting you at risk for illness and disease. Additionally, as your digestion is compromised when higher levels of cortisol are secreted, you may be confronted with bloating, gas, constipation, or diarrhea. These are symptoms of irritable bowel syndrome (IBS), also referred to an as leaky gut syndrome.

Due to the constant production of cortisol and thus the continued higher levels of glucose in your body, your pancreas secretes more insulin into your system, until it is no longer able to do so. This can leave your body insulin resistant and in danger of developing diabetes.

The adrenal glands are also impacted by the constant, heightened demand for cortisol. At some point, the adrenal glands are no longer able to keep up this production level, and adrenal fatigue sets in. The consequences, especially during the latter stages of this condition, are debilitating.

Pain is perceived in part by the hypothalamus, which sends pain signals to the autonomic nervous system. It is, essentially, the link between the endocrine system and central nervous system. One of its main functions is the secretion of releasing-and-inhibiting hormones that result in the starting or stopping of the production of other hormones throughout the body. This includes cortisol in the adrenal glands. In this way, the hypothalamus is responsible for most of your bodily functions and ensures balance in the body.

One of the hormones found in the hypothalamus is dopamine. Its main functions include inhibiting the release of growth hormone, modulating your motor control centers, and activating your brain’s reward centers. When under constant stress, your dopamine production is reduced, as is the case with other hormones due to the increase in cortisol production. A decline in your dopamine levels leads to many of the symptoms associated with adrenal fatigue, including depression, constant fatigue, and anxiety. Low dopamine activity also influences your pain tolerance levels.

Instead, stressed people feeling increased pain may be due to lowered dopamine levels. Stress increases cortisol which takes pregnenolone from other hormones, reducing dopamine production. Thus, your body’s ability to modulate pain is affected, leaving you feeling like your pain is more severe than it is.