Everyone wants to be happy. That’s why we strive for success and accomplishments because these make us proud and happy. We long for the presence of loved ones because they bring us joy. We eat foods that are bad for us because they put us in high spirits. Basically, everything we do in this world is for the sake of being happy, whether it’s for your own or those of the people you care about if you’re selfless.
Unfortunately, sadness is pretty much inevitable, too. And since it’s a negative feeling, it has some unpleasant manifestations that affect our health. For instance, unhappiness disrupts your sleeping patterns. Worse, it can even contribute to increased risk of heart attack or stroke.
It’s fine to be sad every now and then. Eventually you’ll move on from whatever is causing you emotional affliction. But know that not heeding prolonged periods of sadness can be harmful to your health. Hence, it is crucial that you’re made aware of what happens to your body when you experience bouts of gloom. This can help encourage you to form healthier means to deal with your sadness. It could even prove useful to regain your cheerful frame of mind.
On the other hand, if your ways don’t work and you continue feeling miserable for weeks, it’s the time to see a doctor before your emotional issues become a huge obstruction in your life and relationships. Here are the things that happen to your body when you’re not feeling it:
Your heart is in pain, quite literally
Broken heart has since stopped being a figurative expression when it was found that grieving for the loss of a loved one, for instance, could augment your risk of forming a disorder called cardiomyopathy, which is also called the “broken heart syndrome”. When this takes place, your body may mistake your sorrow for stress that it weakens your immune system. It then becomes easier for your sympathetic nervous system to kick-start your fight or flight mechanism.
When this reaction is initiated, your body responds by secreting stress hormones cortisol and adrenaline. High amounts of these hormones can result to high blood pressure and high blood sugar. To make it worse, encountering a severe bout of cardiomyopathy could lead to your heart stopping to pump blood, resulting to signs of heart attack including chest pains, shortness of breath, achiness in the arms, and sweating. Cardiomyopathy can lead to heart failure as well.
Better facial recognition ability and recall
There are upsides to feeling gloomy, too. In a 2011 study at a university in England, it was shown that sad individuals are better at facial identification compared with those who feel great or those in neutral frame of minds. As evidence suggests, sadness leads to a more involved way of thinking and this kind of thinking enables one to make out faces with more ease.
Moreover, being sad also helps us remember the things that have happened in the past more vividly. It was reported that feelings of melancholy actually enhance one’s attention to detail. This is because being happy makes someone less attentive, reducing their capacity to process information. This may be the reason your down times feel more profound and intense than your happy times simply because you’re more focused when you’re sad.
Your appetite suffers
Certainly, food is the last thing on your mind when you’re emotionally confronted with issues that make you sad. This is because severe feelings of sadness lead to increased stress, weakening your immune system. And because your immune system is situated in the stomach, voila, your appetite is screwed.
During a period of heartbreak, the body becomes under a state of restoration, which constitutes to it working so hard and for an extended period of time to regain its state of restfulness. Until then, your appetite remains messed up.
The bottom line here is that being said goes beyond being not in the mood. It has physical manifestations that can prove to be detrimental to your health. Sadness puts your body in a state of stress that can have negative results. It is true that when the mind suffers, the body cries out.
Melancholy over a break-up or any issues going on in your life is not just something that you can easily ignore, which surely is the usual advice you get. Given this, you should take good care of your body even when you’re feeling down. It’s much harder to get over your sorrow if it takes a toll on your body. Nevertheless, being sad is real and serious and there are no inspirational words that can make it better in an instant. Sometimes you have just to allow yourself to feel it. Also know that with every bit of sadness, there’s an emotional development that makes you more resilient.