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Little do people know how stress impacts our immune system, be it a simple cold, allergy, headaches and many more. In the level of peer pressure present in one’s life, there is a strong connection with stress and your immune system. Let us now discuss the impacts stress can have on our immune system and also how to deal with it, reduce stress thus supporting our immune system in the best possible way.

The fact is that the immune system of your body plays as a defence mechanism for the body by keeping you protected from bacteria, germs and viruses which we ingest without our knowledge. A healthy body depends on the correct functioning of all our systems, and an adverse effect of stress could topple this. The immune system acts like a border force which is able to deal with invaders and prevent any damage to the body.

Places of Transmission of Viruses

The most common places of transmission of viruses are offices especially the air-conditioned ones, as cold viruses can live on pens, computer keyboards, coffee mugs and other objects for hours, therefore it is easy to get in contact with such viruses in daily life. Once you come in contact with such surfaces and touch your nose, you are in with a cold or allergy. Such indicted office workers would coat up to 40% of a room’s surface with viruses.

The next dangerous spot for these viruses to be transmitted are the banknotes that are exchanged so frequently everyday. These notes can hold influenza viruses for almost up to 17 days which is a real cause of worry.

How does stress weaken our immune system?

Once you have stress, your immune system’s capacity is reduced to fight the viruses that attack it, hence leaving you with cold and allergies. You become more vulnerable to infection, as a result of the healing process also becomes slow as your immune system is suppressed due to dealing with stress. If you are able to keep stress at limiting levels, your heart rate, blood pressure and other systems come to normal and you can resume regular activities.

When stress remains constant, the cells of the immune system would not be able to respond normally and produce levels of inflammation which can increase the risk of health issues.

While the above-mentioned points are a direct effect on the immune system, there are a few indirect effects such as stress can have a tendency to start smoking or drinking too much caffeine and alcohol, eating too much sugar, bad sleep habits, and the irregularity in exercise and unhealthy social habits begin.

There are some studies that show how long term stress can play havoc with the immune system, like catching a cold.

Signs that may indicate low immunity

Low immunity is a condition when the immune system of a person is under-active or performs poorly, and is not able to protect the person against an infection or disease.

Signs that may indicate low immunity

  • Do you catch a cold easily?
  • Do you have more than two colds a year?
  • Are you suffering from a chronic infection?
  • Do you get frequent cold sores?
  • Are your lymph glands sore and swollen at times.?

Chronic infections, like a very mild cold, occur repeatedly only for a person who has a weak immune system which does not allow the recovery soon.  Hence a weakened immune system leads to infection which in turn causes damage to the immune system. The only key to stop this cycle is stress reduction, which reduces the susceptibility to colds, flu and other serious diseases.


Text Credits : A.Vogel