Alex Saxton


What can Stress do to a Woman’s Body

Let’s talk about stress and how it can mess with your body. Stress is like that unwanted guest who overstays their welcome and starts rearranging your furniture. It can cause all sorts of havoc, especially for us ladies. Stress is a natural response of the body to situations that pose a threat or challenge, while it allows us to respond and adapt to changing circumstances, prolonged stress can also have negative effects on our health. In this article, we will explore what stress can cause in women’s bodies, particularly the impact of stress on menstrual cycles, and provide tips on how to reduce stress.

What can stress cause

Stress can cause a range of physical and emotional symptoms, including fatigue, irritability, and difficulty sleeping. Chronic stress can also lead to more serious health problems, such as cardiovascular disease and depression.

In women, stress can have specific effects on the reproductive system. The hypothalamus, pituitary gland, and ovaries make up the hypothalamic-pituitary-ovarian (HPO) axis, a complex system that regulates the menstrual cycle and fertility. Stress can activate the HPO axis, leading to changes in hormones that can affect the menstrual cycle.

What stress can do to your body

Stress isn’t just a mental thing, it can physically affect us too. When stress hangs around for too long, it can make you feel tired all the time,  and who has time for that when life hands us a thousand things to juggle? It can mess with your mood, making you irritable and on edge. And let’s not forget about the lovely sleep issues it brings along for the ride – for instance stress can prolong sleep onset and cause multiple night wakings.

But here’s the thing: chronic stress can go beyond those daily annoyances and affect your overall health. Stress can take a toll on menstrual cycles and reproductive systems. The intricate dance between the hypothalamus, pituitary gland, and ovaries can get all mixed up when stress barges in uninvited and this can delay your period.

How long can stress delay your period?

Stress can delay menstruation by altering the levels of hormones that regulate the menstrual cycle. Stress hormones like cortisol and adrenaline can inhibit the production of estrogen and progesterone, two hormones that are vital for the menstrual cycle. Changes in the levels of these hormones can cause the body to skip periods or delay ovulation, leading to irregular menstrual cycles.

The length of time that stress can delay your period varies from woman to woman. In some cases, stress can cause a delay of a few days, while in others, it can lead to longer delays of weeks or months. Stress-induced changes in the menstrual cycle can also be temporary or long-lasting, depending on how well the stress is managed.

What can stress do to a woman’s body?

Stress can have specific physical and emotional effects on a woman’s body. Stress doesn’t stop at your menstrual cycle either. It has a knack for spreading its chaos throughout your entire body. High levels of stress can put you at risk for cardiovascular diseases, like heart disease, by cranking up inflammation and blood pressure – giving your heart some extra unwanted workout.

Chronic stress can also reduce the production of estrogen and progesterone, two hormones that help maintain reproductive health. When these hormones are imbalanced, it can lead to ovulatory dysfunction, making it harder to get pregnant. High levels of stress during pregnancy can increase the risk of preterm labor, low birth weight and developmental problems.

And remember, stress isn’t just about the physical stuff. It can mess with your mental and emotional well-being too. It can leave you feeling overwhelmed, anxious, and just plain down in the dumps. Stress can even weaken that wonderful immune system of yours, making you more susceptible to catching every sniffle and sneeze that comes your way.

Tips for Reducing Stress

Alright, enough talk about all the havoc stress can wreak on your body. Let’s shift gears and talk about how to kick that unwanted guest out the front door and reclaim your peace of mind. Here are some simple tips to help reduce stress and bring back that much-needed Zen:

  1. Embrace relaxation techniques: Ever tried yoga, deep breathing, meditation or hypnosis? These relaxation techniques can work wonders in soothing your mind and body.  For instance hypnosis can help you achieve a state of deep relaxation, which puts your mind and body at ease. It’s like pressing a reset button on your stress levels. During hypnosis, a clinical hypnotherapist guides you to focus on positive thoughts and feelings, which helps shift your mindset away from the stressors bogging you down.
  1. Get moving: Exercise isn’t just for sculpting those abs or boosting your mood. It’s also a great stress-buster! Get your heart racing, flex those muscles, release those endorphins and wave goodbye to stress.
  1. Prioritise sleep: When stress is knocking at your door, it’s crucial to get your beauty sleep. Let your body recharge and rejuvenate, so you can wake up ready to tackle whatever life throws your way.
  1. Nourish your body: A healthy diet is like a superhero cape for conquering stress. Fuel up with fruits, veggies, and all those yummy goodies packed with vitamins and minerals. Give your body the goodness it craves.
  1. Seek support: Remember, you’re not alone in this stress-filled journey. Reach out to your friends, family, doctor or even a mental health professional. Sometimes, talking it out can lighten the load and offer a fresh perspective.


In summary, stress can have a range of physical and emotional effects on a woman’s body. In particular, it can affect menstruation, fertility, and cardiovascular health. Therefore, stress reduction and management are critical for maintaining overall health and well-being.  Whether stress is wreaking havoc on your menstrual cycle or leaving you feeling like a tangled ball of emotions, know that you’re not alone. We all struggle with stress at some point. But armed with my tips in this article and a sprinkle of self-care, you’ll be better equipped to show stress the door and reclaim your wellbeing.

Take a deep breath, stay strong, and remember that you’re capable of handling whatever stress throws your way. Please note if you’re experiencing prolonged or severe stress, please speak with your doctor, healthcare provider or a mental health professional for additional support and guidance.

If you need further assistance in reducing stress and anxiety  – check out my “Relax & Release Worries” hypnosis service during which I can help you to feel calmer, less stressed and worry less. To find out more – click this link Relax and Release Worries

I’m a clinical hypnotherapist with over 15 years experience, and to date I have helped over 100 clients from Poole, Bournemouth, Southampton, Bath, London, Bristol, the United States, and as far afield as New Zealand in reaching their goals. Regardless of where you reside, I am fully equipped to assist you in the same manner so do get in touch if you need my hypnosis help too. Here is the link to my website and here is the link to my calendar if you would like to book a consultation