Emotional Wellbeing

Mental Health

Mandy Kloppers

Effects of Stress on Students

Many people wonder how students can be so anxious and stressed when they haven’t even lived half their lives. The truth is that students experience the most anxiety due to college burdens. Does it harm them? Yes, and we’ll look into these effects in great detail today.

Muscle tension

If we could live a stress-free life, it would be a dream come true. Such a utopian world, however, does not exist. Instead, we have all experienced anxiety at some point in our lives.

Numerous students have complained in their early years of life that they feel a strain on their muscles even when they haven’t done anything strenuous. What could be the reason for this? Stress. Did you know that one of the most common anxiety symptoms is muscle tension?

There are numerous essays on about the adverse effects of worry. Reading them will help you understand how serious the problem can be for your body.

You may be asking yourself many questions at this point.

  • What exactly is muscle tension;
  • Is it a recurring occurrence;
  • What can we do to avoid muscle tension?

Don’t worry, and we’ll go over everything with you. Muscle tension occurs when you fret, or anxiety causes your body to enter “fight or flight” mode. It causes a surge of adrenaline to be released. What happens now is that your muscles contract automatically to signal that you are in danger to the brain and body.

It is, without a doubt, a valuable reflex for the time. However, if you are anxious for an extended period, you will experience muscle tension. An extended period of muscle tension can cause intense pain, difficulty moving, and discomfort.

Students can no longer deal with such pain and stress simultaneously. In addition, it severely interferes with concentration, making sitting in class difficult.

Here are some methods for relieving muscle tension:

  • Getting a massage;
  • Taking warm showers;
  • Taking pain relievers;
  • Practicing yoga.


Overindulgence or Reduced Appetite

It is a known fact that stress can interfere a great deal with your diet. A healthy diet is essential for college students because they need high energy levels to study, work, and maintain their routines. Therefore, any effects of stress on students are harmful.

Stress can cause your body to reject food in the short term. So yes, imagine your stress levels causing you to lose your appetite. It may appear to be an ideal situation for some to lose a few pounds. But hold on. There’s more to it than that.

As previously stated, the fight or flight response activates your brain, causing your appetite to be suppressed for some time. It is due to epinephrine, which temporarily prevents you from eating.

However, if the stress lasts for a more extended period, the story completely changes. Your brain will send signals to your body, causing it to produce cortisol. Cortisol is a hormone that stimulates appetite. Not only should it be triggered, but it should also be increased in the long run. Here is what you’ll notice: the desire to eat all the time because food can deal with stress for students just as it does for others.

Another thing that worrying does when eating is altered your food preferences. When combined with cortisol, high insulin levels are lethal to your diet. Then, sugar cravings and high-fat foods enter the picture. Do you know what stress-eating is now? It could be a problem for you as well!

Memory Loss

Stress affects students’ performance in multiple ways. A student has countless tasks to finish during the day. Shuttling from college to part-time jobs, studying for exams, focusing in class, preparing lengthy assignments. And so on. What do you think students need for all these minor tasks?

A good memory is a student’s most valuable asset. They must learn a variety of skills to complete several courses. To perform well in your exams, you must retain a certain amount of information.

Stress interferes with exams and causes students to lose sight of the most fundamental things. You’ll find yourself worrying about where you’ve kept the keys when you’re supposed to meet everyone for dinner, what you ate last night, or how much of the syllabus you’ve covered so far.

Let’s understand the logic behind why stress affects academic performance. First, anxious individuals have a hard time forming memories. Be it short-term memories or long-term ones, and you will not be able to retain your memories. That simply explains why learning becomes a more significant challenge. Not only that, if you are anxious during an event, you lose your focus and aren’t able to remember much of it.

There are some tips and tricks you can practice regularly under anxiety to retain your focus and improve your memory:

  •                 Practice slow breathing a couple of times, breathe in, and then breathe out;
  •                 Move around, walk a bit, listen to some songs, and groove to the beat to relax.

Get Less Sleep

Humans cannot function without a regular sleep schedule. If you want to thrive, you must maintain a regular sleep schedule. Many people seek refuge in the form of sleep. Most people don’t realize that stress makes it difficult to sleep.

Insomnia is the medical term for this condition. The problem of hyperarousal occurs as a result of worry. It has been shown to disrupt the balance of sleepiness and wakefulness. However, it’s more than just a lack of sleep. Students also complain about the amount and quality of sleep they get when under stress.

It can also cause daytime drowsiness, irritability, and fatigue. You may not realize it, but approximately 10% to 30% of adults have insomnia. Consider how difficult it is for them to function daily. In addition, it is harmful to students because it lowers their energy levels, causes aggression, impairs social interaction and performance, and increases the likelihood of making mistakes during assignments and exams.

Effects of stress on college students are massive, but we tend to ignore it countless times. It interferes with their creativity and prevents them from having a suitable college life where they learn and enjoy. It should always be taken seriously instead of brushing it off your sleeve so you can find ways to reduce your anxiety levels.

Stress is an inevitable part of our lives. Unfortunately, we can’t do much about it, but we can avoid it for a healthier, better lifestyle. If you want to do better academically, instead of focusing your energy on anxiety, try to find ways to get away from it in the long run.

Best wishes!