The Affects of Stress on Your Brain

How does stress affect our brain

By: Evan Nghe, "Journalist"

Stress can come from many things, usually from things that we don’t like. If that is the case, is stress good for your brain and body? What effects does it have on us?

Is stress always bad?

Sometimes, stress isn’t bad although it comes from bad things. It can awaken our minds or trigger our flight/flight senses. However, too much some something is never good. Too much stress can affect your brain in many ways.

How does stress work?

Before we talk about the effects of stress, we should talk about how stress works. HPAA, or hypothalamus pituitary adrenal axis is the chemical system happens when events that lead up to stress occur. A chemical called cortisol is released from the HPAA whenever something that causes stress happens to you. Cortisol causes your body to act with a fight or flight response. So what happens when your brain creates lots of cortisol over time?

How does stress affect our brain?

Stress uses activity in the amygdala, which controls what your brain fears. As our brain produces more cortisol, our hippocampus, which controls how we control stress, how we learn, and our memories, slowly decays. Eventually, cortisol causes your brain to shrink. On top of all of that, it can cause your hippocampus to produce fewer brain cells. All of this can lead up to memory loss and learning difficulties.

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  • Meditate
  • Open up
  • Sleep well
  • Take care of your body