Have you ever wondered about the impact our emotions can cause on our body and mind? You won’t believe what kind of an impact our emotions can have on our physical health.
Emotions are feelings or sensations that we have when we are around some type of stimuli. Along with humans, even animals too experience emotions. We as human beings are more progressed, to experience emotions and express them in a better way. We can feel the emotions surge in our body, for example the tingly feeling we have on our back, our body hair standing up when we experience fear, is how we as a species experience emotion. The human body and mind in a similar way experience several emotions throughout our lifetime.
Depending on the type of emotion, it is felt in certain or all parts of our body. Having said that it is really necessary to let out all the emotions that you are feeling, it is necessary to express them. If these emotions are not let out, they can have a negative impact on your mental health as well as physical health.
Whenever we experience a positive emotion, it most often expressed immediately and it lingers on for not so long, for example; love, happiness, joy, excitement etc. We have surge of excitement, our chest often feels heavy when excited, but the excitement dies as soon as we complete the task or get engaged in completing the task, the feeling of excitement may comeback when we think of the moment again, but it will not linger on in our body and mind.
But more than often times we experience negative emotions, and we are not even aware that we just experienced a negative emotion.
Negative emotions are not immediately expressed and if expressed, they are suppressed immediately, For example, If someone scolds you and become sad, and come to point of crying, you will suppress your sadness, until you are alone and then cry and express your sadness when alone.
This happens more than often because of the assumption that the society will judge the person who is expressing “negative” emotions, but these negative emotions which are not suppressed can linger on for a long period of time, the sadness you did not express, will always be on your mind, the embarrassment you felt because of being scolded in front of everyone will always stay with you, the guilt, you didn’t stand up for yourself, will always stay with you. Emotions like sadness, embarrassment, guilt are categorized as negative emotions.
One such emotion that the society judges for being expressed is anger and hence anger is the most repressed and suppressed emotion. People will force themselves to shove down anger deep, back into the depths of their minds, no matter how frustrating, stressful the situation is or was, and how much aggression it generated, a person will try to not express that aggression and anger, that’s why people with a short temperament are often left alone and have fewer social interactions, because they are unable to control their anger, and will shout out, or act violently without a second thought, and if they suppress it, they will take out that anger on inanimate objects, or themselves, or shove it down and express it at a very wrong time or place.
Anger is emotion that is a double-edged sword, if anger is expressed immediately, the person expressing can act in rage and do something very wrong, not necessarily being violent, but verbally abusing a loved one, or someone important, or saying something that shouldn’t be said, and if not expressed the suppression of that rage can burst out after many days, months or even years and no one can estimate how it will be expressed.
Suppressed anger has many forms of outbursts, but the most common are violent outburst, a person may physically harm someone, or verbally harm them, that can lead to a lot of emotional problems, mental problems, physical problems, and if the outburst was extremely violent it can lead to problems with the law, hence controlling anger is what we are taught since our childhood. However, anger can also lead to alcohol abuse, substance abuse, just to keep the anger suppressed. Problems
like OCD and can also lead to severe mental disorders like depression, anxiety issues, bipolar disorders etc. Depression and anxiety are two disorders that are often observed in people who are suppressing their emotions, namely negative emotions like anger, which mainly occurs because of the stress that comes with the suppression. However not only that, suppressing anger can have a significant impact on the mental health of a person, but it can also have a severe impact on their physical health too.
The efforts the mind and the body have to go through to keep the anger or any negative emotion suppressed generates a lot of a stress. The stress that comes due suppressing or repressing anger can lead to hormonal imbalance, which can lead to the development of gastrointestinal disorders, cardiovascular disorders, obesity etc. The hormonal imbalance can also lead to the development of ulcers in various places and these ulcers and can cause damage to the immune system and lead to cancerous growth in certain body parts.
Now this statement is not just coming from reading certain articles or research papers, but this comes from experience. Last year in December my mother was diagnosed with cancerous activity. Though it was not cancer, it was a call and we lucky enough to discover about it sooner, before any more damaged could be caused. Luckily, it was not harmful, and we are taking all the precautions so that there would be no harm of any kind in the future. But the circumstances that my family had to go through made us think what could be the reason that my mother was diagnosed with something as dangerous as cancer.
That’s when my father contacted a doctor friend of his and he was doing research on a very interesting and peculiar subject. He mentioned to my father that suppressing and repressing anger can lead to the development of cancer in our body. This made me think that how dangerous it can be if we suppress our anger. And it’s just not anger, it’s all the emotions, all the negative emotions. Suppressing all the negative emotions can lead to something dangerous to our mental and physical health.
The motive of writing this is to spread awareness about how dangerous not expressing emotions can be.
My mother for the majority of her life would suppress her emotions no matter how tensed or disturbing the situation would be and all that accumulation of her anger and all the emotions she suppressed for years, came out in a very dangerous form. We could never clearly see the symptoms, but they were all laid out there, she had suppressed a lot of rage and anger from all the instances that had happened in her life in the past, and slowly was becoming highly anxious and depressed due to it, she even had violent outbursts, but we never imagined that her suppressing her emotions, her anger would lead to this. If only we would have read the signs clearly and given her the way and medium to express her emotions through therapy or any way possible, we could have avoided the possibility of emotions accumulating into something dangerous.
Though there are other factors that need to be taken into consideration, like diet, overthinking, lack of exercise are some other factors that need to be taken into consideration, but all these other factors also happened because she was suppressing emotions, mainly anger that lead to these other factors and that seems the most appropriate answer for my mother’s diagnosis.
There is active research going on in this field and I thought that because my mother, my family and I have been through this experience, it would be appropriate to share this information to make people aware that if you or anyone you know, your loved ones, are going through this problem and before it turns into something dangerous, prevent it, take action on it, the signs are right in front of us, ask them if they are feeling good, give a medium to express their emotions, and if you think you cannot be helpful, then be helpful by taking them to a therapist or a mental health professional and then let them help them overcome those challenges.
Having said that the experience and information I have shared here is just a theory. There are several other factors that play a part in the development of cancer and this could potentially be one of the reasons that could lead to cancerous growth, I had an experience with it and hence I would not rule out the possibility that the power that our mind has over our body can lead to something dangerous if not treated on time.
In the end, I would like to say, just take care of people you care, look out for any symptoms if you feel someone is suppressing or repressing their emotions. Look out for symptoms like unexplained weight loss, chronic coughing, chronic headache, difficulty swallowing, a sore or wound that does not heal, an unobvious lump; These could be signs of cancerous growth, and taking early precaution can save you from the troubles you and your loved ones will face.