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The Physical Impact of Grieving

Grief is a complex emotion that manifests differently in everyone.

Some people seem to cope well after the initial shock of losing a loved one, while others display both emotional and physical symptoms that can last for months, even years.

Grieving is a normal human response to loss, and often the only thing that can help is the passage of time.

Here are some of the physical effects grief can cause. It’s important to seek professional help if your symptoms seem to be lasting a long time or impacting your health excessively.

grieving young African woman with crossed arms lying on couch at home crying

Problems with Appetite

Grieving people often lose their appetite temporarily and may feel nauseated. They might also experience digestive upsets such as stomach cramps or constipation.

At the other end of the scale, some people might start to overeat to make themselves feel better, or eat too much of the wrong foods.

Either problem can lead to weight loss or gain.

Mood Swings and Irrational Behaviour

Grief can cause people to feel a wide range of emotions, often one after the other and many people have trouble coping or balancing their moods.

Mood swings, lashing out and behaviour that’s out of character is a common symptom of grief, especially in its initial stages before the person has accepted the loss of their loved one.

Be patient and understanding and give yourself time to heal emotionally.

Trouble Sleeping

Sleep disturbances are another common symptom of grief and trauma in a person’s life. Falling asleep, staying asleep or sleeping too much are all signs that your brain is having trouble coping with the loss.

Lack of sleep can lead to poor focus and coordination, so it’s vital that you don’t operate a vehicle or heavy machinery, or do anything else to endanger yourself or other people.

Too much sleep can be just as detrimental and can leave you feeling groggy and fatigued.

Decreased Energy

Intense grief can really do a number on your body and leave you feeling tired with very little energy for day to day living.

This is normal for a time, until you learn how to cope with your loss, but it can also be a symptom of your poor appetite and lack of sleep.

Looking After Yourself

Although it might be the last thing you feel like doing, it’s important to eat properly, get some fresh air and exercise, and adequate sleep.

Just staying properly hydrated and eating a nutritious meal can make a world of difference to how you feel.

Realise that what you’re experiencing is normal and will improve over time if you look after yourself properly.

Arranging a Funeral

Personal Farewells understands the grieving process, and we’re here to support, guide and help you choose the right funeral service and a meaningful farewell for your loved one.

We offer a range of funerals to help you honour and celebrate their life, with genuine compassion and personalised services to suit your individual requirements.

Call us on 1300 95 95 33, email us on [email protected], or fill out our contact form for more information and support to help you through the funeral process.


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