The term ” nervous breakdown ” is used to describe a stressful situation in which a person is temporarily unable to function normally. It can occur when stress becomes physically and emotionally overwhelming. Nerve breakdown is not a medical term, but many people use it to describe a mental breakdown caused by depression, anxiety, or stress. Read on to be on the lookout for when you or someone else may be about to have a nervous breakdown, and what to do.

6 warning signs of a nervous breakdown

Long-term stress takes its toll on our bodies and minds. There is a limit to how much we can bear. By learning to recognize the signs of a nervous breakdown, it can help you get help before you get to the bottom of the breakdown. And for you and for someone close to you who is suffering from these symptoms, it is important that you consider that this state should never be underestimated, since it can lead to more severe mental health problems.

1. Irregular heartbeat prior to a nerve attack

A nervous breakdown can be accompanied by an irregular heartbeat. You can feel your heart beat against your chest and it will be difficult to breathe. You can also start to sweat. A panic attack has symptoms similar to a nervous breakdown. Practice deep breaths with long inhales and exhales, and do stretches to open your chest.

2. Lack of concentration

Chronic stress affects your attention span and your ability to concentrate. The constant lack of concentration makes it difficult to perform normal functions every day. In severe cases, the stress hormone cortisol can affect memory. It is important to recognize when your stress levels are reaching a high level, and to make an effort to reduce them.

3. Tension headaches

Chronic stress can also cause headaches. Stress retention affects the inside and outside of the body. Your neck and shoulder muscles can become stiff, and you may feel more down. Stress affects the muscles, especially around the head and neck area. Constant tension headaches can be a sign that your stress is becoming overwhelming.

4. Sleep problems

Lack of sleep is one of the most common causes of mental stress. Without adequate sleep, your body and mind are unable to function properly. Insomnia symptoms include lying awake for long periods of time before falling asleep, short sleep intervals, being awake for most of the night, and the overwhelming feeling of not having slept at all.

5. Anxiety as a prelude to a nervous breakdown

Occasional anxiety is common. For a person with an anxiety disorder, it is not easy to manage. Instead, it gets worse over time. Constant anxiety can interfere with daily activities like job performance and relationships. Doing something to lower your stress levels, such as yoga, exercise, or finding a creative outlet, may be able to help with your anxiety.

6. Depression

Depression can severely affect a person’s thoughts, behavior, feelings, and sense of well-being. It can also be the underlying cause of a nervous breakdown. If you’re feeling hopeless or depressed, have restless or suicidal thoughts, it’s important to seek professional help. Untreated depression can lead to mental and physical health problems.

By Dr. Eric Jackson

Dr. Eric Jackson provides primary Internal Medicine care for men and women and treats patients with bone and mineral diseases, diabetes, heart conditions, and other chronic illnesses.He is a Washington University Bone Health Program physician and is a certified Bone Densitometrist. Dr. Avery is consistently recognized in "The Best Doctors in America" list.

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