Skip to content

COVID-19 is an emerging, rapidly evolving situation.

Get the latest public health information from CDC:
Get the latest research information from NIH:

I’m So Stressed Out! Infographic

View the related fact sheet for more information.

Stress vs. Anxiety

Stress Both Stress and Anxiety Anxiety
  • Generally is a response to an external cause, such as taking a big test or arguing with a friend.
  • Goes away once the situation is resolved.
  • Can be positive or negative. For example, it may inspire you to meet a deadline, or it may cause you to lose sleep.

Both stress and anxiety can affect your mind and body. You may experience symptoms such as:
  • Excessive worry
  • Uneasiness
  • Tension
  • Headaches or body pain
  • High blood pressure
  • Loss of sleep
  • Generally is internal, meaning it's your reaction to stress.
  • Usually involves a persistent feeling of apprehension or dread that doesn't go away, and that interferes with how you live your life.
  • Is constant, even if there is no immediate threat.

Ways to Cope

  • Keep a journal.
  • Download an app with relaxation exercises.
  • Exercise and eat healthy.
  • Get regular sleep.
  • Avoid excess caffeine.
  • Identify and challenge your negative thoughts.
  • Reach out to friends and family.

Find Help

If you’re struggling to cope or the symptoms of your stress or anxiety begin to interfere with your everyday life, it may be time to talk to a professional. Find more information about stress and anxiety and getting help.

National Institutes of Health
NIMH Identifier No. OM 20-4319