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We’re committed to helping people improve their mental health, which is why we’ve created lots of useful information about mental health and wellbeing. Anyone can use it, even if you don't have health insurance with us.
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Stress can cause a number of physical symptoms. These can include aches and pains, headaches and diarrhoea or constipation. It may make you feel more tired and you may have trouble sleeping. Stress can also affect your sex life. For more information, see our section on symptoms.
There are lots of things you can do to help yourself feel better. Doing some exercise can be beneficial, and it’s important to take some time to relax. There are different relaxation techniques you can try. It will also help to look at practical changes you can make – like organising your time better. Our section on self-help has more information.
Stress affects people in different ways. A little bit of stress can be a good thing because it may motivate you. But it can start to cause problems if it’s having a negative effect on your health. You may feel irritable, overwhelmed, depressed and anxious. Stress can cause physical symptoms too. You can read more about the signs of stress in our section on symptoms.
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This information was published by Bupa's Health Content Team and is based on reputable sources of medical evidence. It has been reviewed by appropriate medical or clinical professionals and deemed accurate on the date of review. Photos are only for illustrative purposes and do not reflect every presentation of a condition.
Any information about a treatment or procedure is generic, and does not necessarily describe that treatment or procedure as delivered by Bupa or its associated providers.
The information contained on this page and in any third party websites referred to on this page is not intended nor implied to be a substitute for professional medical advice nor is it intended to be for medical diagnosis or treatment. Third party websites are not owned or controlled by Bupa and any individual may be able to access and post messages on them. Bupa is not responsible for the content or availability of these third party websites. We do not accept advertising on this page.
- How to manage stress. Mind. mind.org.uk, published November 2017
- Stress. Mental Health Foundation. mentalhealth.org.uk, last updated 17 September 2021
- Fight-or-flight response. Encyclopaedia Britannica. www.britannica.com, accessed 9 November 2021
- Mental health. Oxford Handbook of General Practice. Oxford Medicine Online. oxfordmedicine.com, published online June 2020
- Seeking help for a mental health problem. When should I seek help? Mind. mind.org.uk, published December 2017
- Complementary and alternative therapies. Mind. mind.org.uk, published April 2018