Excessive stress is a new epidemic in today world. From childhood to old age, everyone is suffering from it. The level of stress is going up everyday in every individual. Chronic stress has become an epidemic now. Many people facing difficulty to cope with high stress. It leads to several chronic mental and physical illness.

Stress is mainly devided into two types. Acute stress and chronic stress. Sudden short timed threatening event is acute stress. Ongoing problem is chronic stress.

Acute and chronic stress

The level of stress changes the hormones of our body. We have several stress hormones in our body which help us in coping in difficult situations. Our adrenal gland helps in releasing cortisol, which is our stress hormone. It has several bad effect on our body. If someone has chronic stress, the hormone remains elevated causing several problems inside our body.

Effect of excess cortisol

It has several bad effect on our brain. According to scientists, chronic stress is one of the worst enemies of brain. It causes several changes. Along with it stress causes other problems like sleep difficulty, poor nutrition, emotional distress, alcoholism etc. They increase the harmful effects.

Stress brain loop

– Stress creates free radicals which destroy brain cells:

Cortisol creates a surplus of the neurotransmitter glutamate. While glutamate is a necessary and important brain chemical, in excess it turns against your brain and becomes a neurotoxin. It produces free radical and destroy brain cells.

Stress causes memory loss

Stress causes neuronal injury in hippocampus, which is the site of memory. Finally it causes memory loss.

Stress makes you emotional, fearful

Chronic stress fortifies the emotion centre of brain. It increases neuronal activity in amygdala. It causes more fear. More fear gives rise to more stress and it goes on.

Stress stops the happy hormones

Chronic stress decreases the happy hormones like serotonin. It makes you depressed. It also decrease the motivational hormone dopamine leading to apathetic behavior.

– Stress makes you stupid

In examination, interview excessive stress causes thought block.

– Chronic stress shrinks the brain

Excessive stress decrease the brain size causing early dementia and behavior problem. It also causes early death in brain cells.

– Excess stress impairs the sleep

Stress causes sleep deprivation causing many dangerous effects on brain. It causes more stress. This vicious cycle goes on.

– Chronic stress causes chronic pain

Stress is a common cause of Chronic pain. It decreases the threshold of pain causing several difficulty. It also causes a vicious cycle.

Stress can do impairment in many other ways too. We can discuss it in another Sunday mirror.

We use many scores to know stress level. There are many easy scores too. Even you can know stress level in your life by using this score. It’s dependant on your last month feelings. It’s easy for non medical person too. So what is your stress count. (Perceived stress scale – 4,5,7,8 are positive items. In those items the numbers are reversed 4 is never and 0 is very often. Others are negative items)

Know your stress score, destress yourself. How to fight stress and save the brain, it is another discussion topic in another Sunday mirror.

This is the last Sunday mirror of the year 2019. Loads of thanks for the love and support for this weekly awareness initiative. Leave your all stress and worries and step into the twenty-twenty. Be happy and welcome the 2020 with physical and mental prosperity.

May the new year 2020 brings all the happiness to your neurons.


#stress #mental health #anxiety



  1. Happy New year To THE NEURON team for being a part of our life and making awareness among all. Special thanks to Dr SUBHANKAR sir.


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