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What are the Key Signs of Stress Affecting Mental Health?

Published on: May 30, 2022

signs of stress

We’ve all been so overwhelmed by stress that we can’t perform simple tasks. Maybe it was when you were in college and studying for a final exam, or it was the day of your wedding when you still had a million things to finish before the big day. Maybe it’s just a stressful day at work. Perhaps it’s always a stressful day at work.

Mental health encompasses your emotional, psychological, and social well-being. It’s not just about whether you have a mental illness like depression or anxiety. Stress, in particular, can be a significant factor in your mental health.

We all feel stressed at one time or another. But when the challenges you face become too much for you to handle, it can affect your physical and mental health.

The key to managing stress is being aware of the signs that indicate that your body and mind are under pressure. Once you notice these signs, you can take steps to mitigate them. Some symptoms of being stressed out include:


Stress might be the culprit if you feel exhausted all day, even though you’re getting adequate sleep. Fatigue is a sign that your body is working hard to deal with the stress—so hard that it has no energy left over for other tasks.


If you find yourself snapping at people or feeling unfairly angry about minor things, your mental health might be suffering from too much stress. When you’re stressed out, cortisol builds up in your system, creating an imbalance that affects your mood and makes you more prone to anger than usual.


If you worry about small things or get hung up on seemingly insignificant details, you might be experiencing too much stress. Our minds become flooded with cortisol and adrenaline, and we cannot prioritize effectively.

Trouble Sleeping

When you have a lot going on in your life, it can be challenging to fall asleep at night because your mind is so active. This can then affect the quality of your sleep and the amount, leading you to wake up even more tired and stressed than when you went to bed.

Feeling sad and hopeless about the future

Stress makes negative thoughts feel bigger than they are, making them seem impossible to overcome or manage. This can lead you to become depressed about things that aren’t usually such a big deal.

Constantly exhausted

Being tired isn’t always a sign that you need more sleep. Instead, it can mean that you’re stressed out and spending all of your energy worrying about things instead of tackling them head-on. If you feel frustrated by your fatigue, try taking some steps to de-stress.

Here are some other common signs of stress affecting mental health:

  1. Lose pleasure in activities you used to enjoy
  2. Overeat or stop eating at all
  3. Feel less energetic or tired all the time
  4. Get sick more often
  5. Have trouble sleeping or sleep all the time
  6. Can’t remember things well
  7. Get irritable or anxious easily
  8. Having more accidents than normal
  9. Lack of concentration or focus
  10. Experiencing frequent headaches

The Bottom Line

So much is going on in the world, and we’re all experiencing it differently. Some of us are experiencing stress, some of us are experiencing depression, and some are experiencing both. But how can you tell what’s what?

The first thing to do when you’re feeling stressed out or depressed is to take a minute to stop and breathe. You’ve got this! Once you’ve given yourself a second to calm down, there are some very specific differences between stress and depression that can help guide your next steps in taking care of your mental health.

For more information about Mental Health Conditions. Visit our Mental Health Library page.  To understand and cope with your psychological symptoms, get help from our Top 10 Psychiatrists, Psychologists, and Therapists who are known for providing the best mental health treatment and psychiatry services. To book an appointment please call us at (800) 457-4573 or submit an appointment request.

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