Top 10 Things That Happen to Your Body When You're Heartbroken

Script written by Spencer Sher The science behind heartbreak is so interesting. We all know what it feels like to be heartbroken. In this countdown we take a look at the Top 10 things that happen to your body when you are heartbroken! Not only will you be stressed but your dopamine levels dip and are replaced by cortisol, a nasty stress hormone. Your immune system will be weakened. Humans fight off sicknesses everyday without even noticing it. But when our systems are weakened, such as after a nasty breakup, the body produces fewer white blood cells, making it difficult to ward off sickness.
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Top 10 Things That Happen To Your Body When You're Heartbroken


As if getting broken up with wasn’t already hard enough! Welcome to MsMojo, and today we’ll be counting down our picks for the Top 10 Things That Happen To Your Body When You're Heartbroken.

For this list, we’ll be taking a look at the physical and emotional things that happen to your body when you experience heartbreak.

#10: Your Heart Rate Drops


They don’t call it heartbreak for nothing! Research has shown that in the moments after a breakup your heart rate has the potential to slow down. This can cause muscle fatigue and should definitely be followed up on if it begins to cause you any real pain. Why does this happen? Well, as it turns out, when human beings experience a social rejection it can wreak havoc on their cardiovascular system, which in turn can affect your heart rate. As always, don’t just assume you’re keeling over because your boyfriend left you. If you think it’s serious, go see a doctor.

#9: You’ll Be Stressed


It goes without saying that most people won’t be jumping for joy after getting their heart broken. The reality is that heartbreak can lead to major emotional stress; and this can be quite serious. It all has to do with the chemicals in your body. When you’re in love, your body is shooting dopamine left, right and center, making you feel like you’re on top of the world. But the moment you get your heart broken, your dopamine levels dip and are replaced by cortisol, a nasty stress hormone. You can thank all that extra cortisol for why you’ve become permanently tense. This is something worth monitoring, as too much stress can be dangerous to your health.

#8: You’ll Have Trouble Sleeping


Getting dumped can throw your regular sleep pattern into frenzy. That’s because sleeplessness is an unfortunate side effect of having your heart ripped out and smashed on the floor. But why does this happen? Is it because your brain can’t stop going over the events of the break up? Nope, it’s all about chemistry. You see the dopamine levels in your body will start going a little crazy after a breakup. And because dopamine is in part responsible for regulating sleep it can cause you to wake up at random times throughout the night. If you’re still having trouble sleeping weeks or months after a breakup then it might be time to speak with your doctor.

#7: Your Critical Thinking Will Be Impaired



A nasty breakup can make you do all sorts of crazy things. You may start mixing up days of the week, forgetting appointments or putting things in places they don’t belong. You may also notice that your impulse control has gone out the window. Don’t worry, it’s normal. When you get your heart broken the brain will often take a hit, resulting in impairment to both your critical thinking and your ability to refuse that extra slice of pizza. This occurs because your brain is struggling to comprehend what just happened. Questions like “why did he leave me?” will take a front seat to “where did I park my car?”

#6: You’ll Experience Withdrawal Symptoms


When someone who is using drugs is cut off, they go through withdrawal – a period of mental and physical suffering. The body craves the drug in question so badly, it is literally fighting against itself to get it back. The same thing happens when you’re heartbroken. In fact, new research has shown that the areas of the brain that light up when a person is doing drugs or craving them is the same area that lights up when you see a picture of your ex. It can create an intense feeling of longing, which in turn can make you feel like complete crap. But don’t worry, just like drug withdrawal, it will all be over soon.

#5: Your Immune System Will Be Weakened


Have you ever noticed that after a breakup you tend to come down with a cold? It’s not supernatural. In fact, because of the hormonal change that occurs when a person gets their heart broken, the body is more susceptible to colds, flus and other unwanted maladies. This is because stress hormones negatively affect the human immune system. Humans fight off sicknesses everyday without even noticing it. But when our systems are weakened, such as after a nasty breakup, the body produces fewer white blood cells, making it difficult to ward off sickness.

#4: Your Hormones May Change


When you’re in love, you’re flying high. All that happiness is due to increased levels of positive hormones like dopamine. However, when you get your heart broken, your body swaps out the good hormones for bad ones such as cortisol. This is a stress hormone and can make you feel like the world is caving in on you. Additionally, the lack of dopamine in your system can make getting sexually aroused much harder than it should be. For men, this can mean erectile dysfunction and for women it can make getting pregnant harder. So basically getting broken up with is the worst.

#3: Your Weight Might Fluctuate


Well, duh! Polishing off two tubs of Neapolitan ice cream will do that to you! Okay, we don’t just mean you’ll eat your feelings away in a two-day chocolate binge. When life rears its ugly head, it can affect your hormones. This in turn can cause you to crave salty, carb-heavy foods that will no doubt cause you to gain a couple of pounds. However, there is a flip side to this equation in that some people choose to eat nothing after having their heart broken. They are so overcome with grief that eating takes a backseat to dealing with the emotional pain. Either way, it won’t last forever.

#2: You'll Question Your Identity


Who hasn’t gotten dumped and spent the next few weeks going over every single painstakingly innocuous detail? Breakups cause us to look inward. They make us wonder where it went wrong and whether or not there was something that could have been done to prevent it from happening. All of that self-questioning can get ugly and will ultimately take a toll on your psyche. You may start to question your own existence; because you clearly aren’t the person you thought you were if Joe Blow no longer wants to date you. Keep in mind that while introspection is good for your health, it is best done in moderation.

#1: You’ll Think You’re Physically Hurt


Ah yes, the classic “the break-up was so bad, it literally hurts” excuse. Well, as it turns out this is less of an excuse and more of a reality. You see the part of the brain that processes loss is the same part that is responsible for telling your body when it’s been physically hurt. Our bodies are weird and they will often interpret our emotions in unexpected ways. This is why a broken heart can sometimes feel like getting hit by a train. Our bodies react in a similar fashion when under large amounts of stress, leading to stomach or chest pain and headaches. Just keep breathing and remember it’s only temporary.

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