Our body collaterally responds when we go through heartbreak or experience something that is both saddening and shocking. The pain we feel is real and not something our mind makes up; calling it an overreaction is not fair. Feelings are a part of our system and they make us human. They affect our mood and can even cause other kinds of physical pain because our brain is interrelated with all of the other body parts by the nervous system.
So when you are heartbroken and feel like your appetite is dying, that is because your body reacts to your emotional pain. Stress is capable of changing some processes in your body that can make you feel different; therefore, heartbreak is not a completely abstract thing.
These are some things that happen to your body when you are suffering through heartbreak:
1. Rejections Can Slow Down Your Heartbeat:
Psychologists say that social rejections can result in low heart rates and researchers verify the fact that breaking can definitely be a form of social rejection. So after you face a sudden emotional change that you were not expecting at all, it affects your heart rate; it slows down a bit. And a slow heart rate may or may not be healthy but it can surely affect the other parts of your body if not taken back to normal in a suitable time period.
2. Stress Can be Dangerous:
When you finally get over the shock, you usually start feeling stressed out. All kinds of thoughts start to hit you and you start wondering and over-thinking about them. You wonder if you did something wrong or if you are a bad person or if someone will ever love you again. All of these unpleasant thoughts are forms of stress and stress can cause damage.
Stress can activate your sympathetic nervous system (SNS) which can increase your inflammation levels and raise your hydrocortisone level too. You may not feel too hungry even when you have not eaten all day, your immune system can also be affected and lack of sleep is also one of the common side effects.
In rare cases, stress can literally break your heart. Some studies suggest that emotional distress can cause damage to the heart, not causing any serious heart diseases but only as a result of the pumped up sympathetic nervous system.
3. It is Okay to Feel Physical Pain:
It is okay to feel physical pain even when there is no wound or injury anywhere on your body. Heartbroken people often express that they feel like their bones are breaking and their chest opening up, it is because the region of our brain that processes mental pain is the same one that processes physical pain. A Current Directions in Psychological Science research suggested this is why we feel so.
4. Cocktail of Emotions:
The basic reason for all the emotional confusion is the cocktail of emotions. Looking back at their picture, our brain entertains a fight of two different types of feelings. We are well aware of the fact that they are gone and the connection is broken, but we still feel attached to them to some extent. A battle begins in our brain as suggested by neuropsychologists.
Certain areas of our brain, that show we are craving for a drug, light up at that time along with the areas that constantly tell us to move on and that it is all not so bad. All of these regions of our brains obviously have proper scientific names. Two opposite regions activated can cause chaos up there.
5. Forgetful and Impulsive:
Being forgetful and impulsive while suffering through heartbreak is quite common. Our attention diverts from what we are currently doing and consequently, we end up doing something we were not supposed to do, like OCD patients. According to research, self-control decreases after a social rejection and we can do awful things on impulse. It is also one of the reasons why some of the heartbroken people eat a lot rather than killing their diet.
6. Tight Talk:
Due to low progesterone levels, we fail to realise that we are spending a lot of time alone, and if not alone then quiet around people. In the beginning, the low hormone level can determine and change our talking habits. We feel like hello’ and thank you’ are the only words that exist but over time, the progesterone level increases and we feel an urge to talk to more and more people. The social animal awakens and we start getting back to normal.
7. Hair Loss:
Almost two to three months after you have overcome the stress, you may experience some hair loss. A condition called ‘telogen effluvium’ turns the state of your hair follicles from growth to rest when you are stressed. The reason why it happens so late is that you hair growth cycle takes that much time. Do not freak out, though, upon seeing your hair going down the drain because they will eventually grow back.
All of the above conditions and reactions are suggested by psychology and neurology experts.
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