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At Lighting The Way, I hope to help the wonderful people of Colorado Springs navigate their loss and grief so that they’re able to begin the healing process and live fuller lives. Grief has many stages, and the experience is different for every individual. There is no set order or timeline that you’re supposed to experience these emotions. I hope with my resources and guidance, you’ll be able to navigate through your grief in a healthy way.

One aspect of grief not many people discuss is the physical toll it can take on your body. Experiencing a loss is an overwhelming, and sometimes traumatic, event. When you’re experiencing grief, it’s hard to notice the physical changes that may be taking place as a result. As we delve into the physical effects of grief, hopefully you’ll be more prepared and have a better chance of noticing when they’re taking place. 

Physical Effects Of Grief 

It can be helpful to learn about the effects of grief so that you’re better prepared and aware of any physical changes that take place as you navigate a loss. With some help, hopefully you’ll be able to minimize, or even avoid, these physical changes.

  1. Fatigue
    • It can be physically exhausting to grieve a loss, and your body needs time to rest and recover. Exhaustion is one of the more common effects of grief. It’s not just normal tiredness; it’s feeling so exhausted that it becomes difficult for you to wake up and get out of bed and complete your normal routine. Some doctors even say that grieving people can become so physically weak that they feel like they are suffering from the flu.
  2. Heart Health
    • One of the more serious physical effects of grief is cardiac problems. When someone’s grieving, their body releases stress hormones. The influx of hormones can lead to cardiovascular complications, such as cardiomyopathy. Cardiomyopathy is when it becomes harder for your heart to pump blood due to changes of the heart muscle.
  3. Headaches
    • Another possible result of the influx of stress hormones is headaches. Stress hormones have a similar effect on the body as the “broken heart syndrome.” When an overwhelming amount of stress hormones are released, it can stun the muscles that they come in contact with. If you’re experiencing a throbbing headache that you go to bed with and wake up with, try your best to relax for a few minutes, and provide your body with some peace.
  4. Digestive Issues
    • When we’re experiencing stress, it’s common for the digestive tract to become more sensitive. You may find yourself binge eating, or losing the desire to eat at all. These sudden changes in behaviors can cause you to feel nauseous, experience intense stomach pain and even experience irritable bowel syndrome. 
  5. Confusion
    • When you experience a loss, it’s not uncommon for you to start experiencing heart palpitations, feeling breathless or experiencing panic. You may begin to feel dizzy and confused due to the increase of adrenaline that’s surging through your body. Unfortunately, some people even begin to experience panic attacks due to the extreme changes in their bodies.

Coping With Grief 

Navigating through a loss can be a difficult experience, but it’s inevitable that everyone will grieve at some point in their lives. During the difficulty following a loss, it’s important to pay attention to your mental and physical health. Although it can feel like the world is ending and there’s no point to anything anymore, I hope to help you realize that there’s a light at the end of the tunnel. I also hope to teach you that while your grief is completely valid, there are healthy ways to cope.

Most people are familiar with the emotional side effects of grief, but the physical effects are less known. Through the resources available through Lighting The Way, I hope you’ll become more aware of the possible physical effects of grief and learn how to minimize their impact. I know that the pain of grief can feel like it’s never going to end, but I promise you, it will. If you’re in Colorado Springs and would like to discuss your situation and emotions further, please get in touch.

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