Culture shock is more than having a few unexpected circumstances come your way after moving to a new country. It can be a physical illness, cause emotional distress, and create complete disorientation.
Everything is unfamiliar when moving to a new country. The things that were once part of the usual routine are now gone.
Although most side effects of culture shock are minor, it can cause some severe health issues that may require medical attention.
List of the Culture Shock Symptoms You Should Take Seriously
Culture shock is experienced in stages. Most people feel a honeymoon stage when they move to a new country. It doesn’t take long for the charm to wear off! Your body craves the chance to get back into the usual routine, and you’ll eventually come to a point where you realize that outcome isn’t possible.
That’s when the distress stage occurs. You start to feel alone, confused, and unable to find the supports needed to thrive.
You may experience any or all of the following symptoms during that stage.
- Small problems feel overwhelming and unsolvable.
- You feel depression, anger, or vulnerability often.
- You’re having trouble getting to sleep without some kind of resting aid.
- You start checking on your health to soothe your concerns.
- You have sadness or loneliness that doesn’t go away.
- Allergies, headaches, or joint pain develop unexpectedly.
- The new culture becomes your latest obsession.
- You’re unexpectedly insecure or shy in social situations.
- You start questioning the reason why you decided to move to a new country.
- The best way to spend your day feels like it is cleaning your home.
- You start sleeping more than usual.
- When you head outside, you feel lost or confused.
It takes some time to accept the differences you experience with a new culture. You might even feel like rejecting it. If you give things some time, you’ll reach an independence stage where you don’t feel isolated, and the new country will become home.