Take care of that body... You'll need it later!
The grieving process puts a huge strain on your body. It can lower your resistance and leave you open for true physical ailments. And normal grief can cause so much physical discomfort that you may even have signs and symptoms of real illness. It is likely nothing serious, just normal grieving.
When to go for
a checkup? When you deep down feel something is really wrong, or when worry
about your health is starting to contribute to your already significant anxiety
and stress. It'll be worth the money to get checked out and bring peace of mind.
You may not know this, but during sleep, your mind works... at making sense of what happened to you during the day. If you interfere with this normal sleep pattern (alcohol and sleeping pills mess this up), you wake up exhausted. Your mind is not as capable of helping you through your grief-work.
Try activities that help you relax, like yoga or meditation. If you would like a simple free guide to help you get started with meditation, click here: FREE MEDITATION GUIDE.
At bedtime, drink some warm milk and put on soft soothing music. Grab a really boring novel, and settle in.
Try Benadryl or Valerian Root, an herbal, for occasional use only on really difficult nights. Do NOT get in the habit of taking sleepers every night. Very bad for your health and your grief.
You might find that as your grief
matures, you are overwhelmed by stress and anxiety from coping. For some
excellent new strategies and tools to help fight excessive stress and high
anxiety, join up for our free
STRESS MANAGEMENT E-COURSE.
If you were on an exercise routine before your tragedy struck, try to get back to it as soon as you can. If not, go for a slow jog or brisk walk at least every other day. Get on a bike and tour the neighborhood. Get out in the fresh air and sunshine.
Exercise releases stress and tension. It will do you good to get out
of the house for a few minutes, and your body will thank you later.
I know, it can be difficult to even eat right now, but you must provide your body with fuel. Grief expends an enormous amount of energy. You may not be able to face a big plate of gooey lasagna, but surely you can nibble on some grapes and cheese, right?
Get rid of all the ice cream, chips and candy. Stock up on nourishing snack foods. Fruits, cheeses, cereals, and yogurt are all very good and easy on the stomach.
Eat frequent small nourishing snacks to keep you going. Take a
stress-tab multivitamin daily, with a meal. And now is not the time to go on a
The pain of grief is so overwhelming, especially in the beginning, that you may feel tempted to avoid it with alcohol or drugs. An occasional respite with a glass or two of wine won't hurt. Getting drunk every night will. Alcohol is a depressant, you know.
Artificial quick fixes will only postpone the inevitable, and add to your problems. It's only too easy to fall into the trap of avoidance and become dependent on chemicals to get you through the day.
You are strong enough to face
this squarely and make it through without them. Don't add addiction to your
"Grief is itself a medicine" -William Cowper (1731-1800)
Prescription sleeping pills and anti-anxiety medications are some of the most addictive drugs out there. If you were already on an antidepressant before this happened, by all means continue it, and let your doctor know what has happened.
But be very careful of accepting new treatment for depression just because you
are grieving. How to tell the difference between normal grieving and clinical
AN EXCELLENT GUIDE TO DEPRESSION.
P.S.: This is not a good time to quit smoking. Smoking cessation, though well worth doing, is a hugely stressful undertaking, one you don't need to tackle right now.