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What To Know About Emotional Stress, Including Warning Signs and Coping Techniques

You're never going to be completely stress-free—here are the emotional stress symptoms and how to manage them

By | Maggie O’Neill |

Stress is unavoidable. Yes, you can keep your stress levels relatively low through practicing mindfulness and working out regularly, among other things, but living a completely stress-free life is, unfortunately, impossible.

“Sure, there are logistical ways to cut stress out of our lives, but we cannot do that for all stressful events or we would have nothing left,” Shannon O’Neill, PhD (no relation to author), an assistant professor of psychiatry at Mount Sinai Hospital in New York, tells Health.

“Because stress, in general, induces all kinds of emotions—panic, sadness, excitement—most stress can be classified as ’emotional stress,’ or stress that activates your emotions,” Adam Borland, PsyD, a psychologist at Cleveland Clinic’s center for behavioral health, tells Health. Emotional stress, too, can trigger physical manifestations of stress, like increased heart rate, rapid breathing, and digestive issues.

The key to managing stress—both emotional and physical manifestations of it—is recognizing your own triggers, and then identifying coping mechanisms. Here, experts dig into the signs of emotional stress to keep on your radar, and what you can do once you recognize them.

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