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Physical Manifestations of Grief

The death of a loved one can be very painful. Grief can be so overwhelming, it frightens us. Many people worry about grieving the "right" way and wonder if their feelings are normal.

Most people who suffer a loss may find themselves experiencing one or more of the following:

  • Tightness in the throat
  • Heaviness in the chest
  • An empty feeling in the stomach
  • Loss of appetite
  • Difficulty concentrating
  • Difficulty completing tasks
  • Difficulty sleeping
  • Recurrent dreams about the loved one
  • Restlessness
  • Aimlessness
  • A sense of loneliness and isolation
  • Mood changes over the slightest things
  • Inability to picture the loved one before the illness
  • Crying at unexpected times
  • Neglecting one's own health
  • Experiencing some of the same physical symptoms as the loved one
  • Preoccupation with the life of the loved one
  • Anger at having been abandoned by the loved one
  • A need to tell and retell the experience of the loved one's death
  • Assuming a need to take care of others who seem comfortable by avoiding discussing one's loss
  • Visualization of the deceased loved one
  • A need to remember and retell things about the loved one

It's okay to cry.