When You Feel Heartbroken, Your Physical Heart Might Hurt Too, Science Says
A broken heart has been utilized as an image to describe what the deepest sadness can truly be. It usually comes from losing a partner or being placed in a spot of desperation and destructive depression. It’s a moment of time that leaves a person distraught and at a loss for what to do next. It’s one thing that many face when dealing with a terrible breakup or when a person they care for passes away. It has probably happened to you before, and whether or not you have overcome it, just know that others have gone through it and have felt the tearing apart of the heart that comes with the feeling.
It Feels Like A Heart Attack
Researchers have been studying if feeling heartbroken has a physical side too, as it’s always been just a way of expressing how upset or distressed a person is about the current situation. What they have found is something called “stress cardiomyopathy,” which causes a person to feel like they are having a heart attack. But now, new research has been done on atrial fibrillation, in which the stressors involved with the event cause the heart to beat in an irregular pattern. In the American study, researchers found that there is a high chance of developing atrial fibrillation as soon as a month after a loved one passes, and this risk remains high for up to a year. The more suddenly the event happened, the more at risk a person would be. They found that younger people have a greater risk of developing the irregular beat pattern.
This study is another example of how beautiful the human body is, showing a connection between both the mind and the heart. When the mind is in a mental state of despair, the body takes notice and reacts. In this case, it’s not entirely certain that the atrial fibrillation was directly caused by the experienced loss, but the positive correlation suggests that it helps increase the risk. That is what is important here. The body reacts to the news and shock in its own way, a way that potentially causes the beating muscle that is often associated with love itself to go into its own shock and change. It’s heavily indicated by the research that extreme traumatic stress can mess with how the heart and body continue to function, almost leaving a person feeling like a shell, trapped by their deep sense of heartbreak.
“Bereavement is a major life event, which is known to increase the risk of cardiovascular disease, mental illness and death,” notes the study. All three of these factors together can run rampant in a person’s body and cause them to feel trapped. Hearts can actually be broken.
What To Do
There are other ways to try and decrease stress caused by heartbreak. These include meditation, yoga, exercise, finding new hobbies, and centralizing your breathing. I remember a friend of mine telling me that breathing is the best way to soothe the corrupt soul that arises from stressful situations. “Ten deep breaths,” she always told me. I have believed in this ever since, and now I wonder how much simply breathing deeply can help you deal with heart-breaking feelings. A heart doesn’t have to be broken.
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