Warning Signs of Dangerous Stress Exposure

Below are the warning signs and symptoms that become noticeable in an individual who has been negatively impacted by dangerous levels of psychological stress. This is most commonly seen after they experience a high stress situation at work, in their personal life, or after intensified or concentrated exposure to high conflict, elevated tension or repetitive and stressful situations, which could include media overload from viewing crisis events.


PHYSICAL
Fatigue
Sweating
Shortness of breath
Loss or increase of appetite
Nausea or Diarrhea
Elevated blood pressure
Tightness in chest or chest pain
Muscle fatigue or weakness
Insomnia or Hyper-somnia
Increased cold or flu symptoms
Pacing
Heart Palpitations
Shallow breathing
Fainting
Abdominal pain

EMOTIONAL
Anger
Stress
Anxiety
Tension
Apathy
Fear
Panic
Guilt
Uneasiness
Alarm
Numb inside
Impatience
Depression
Shame
Nervousness
Grief
Loss
Irritability
Apprehension
Overwhelmed

BEHAVIORAL
Restlessness
Impulsive
Avoidance
Edgy
Rapid speech
Tense muscles/neck
Easily startled or jumpy
Hyper-vigilance
Withdrawal from others
Accident proneness
Anti-social acts
Inability to rest
Intensified pacing
Increased use of alcohol
Increased use of caffeine

COGNITIVE
Easily Distracted
Poor concentration
Forgetfulness
Errors in judgment
Mental Fog
Decreased decision making
Reduced creativity or mental focus
Diminished productivity
Loss of objectivity
Self-consciousness
Confusion
Fear of losing control
Frightening visual images
Fear of injury, death, pain
Flashbacks-nightmares

The more warning indicators that are identified in a single category or across multiple categories, the more that person may be over-exposed to dangerous levels of psychological distress. Some of these stress-related conditions are quite common, so if only one or two symptoms are present, it is not usually a cause for alarm. However, when in doubt it’s best to review any symptoms that concern you or someone you care about with an experienced mental health professional at the LifeWorks Group. 407-647-7005.

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