Anxiety is a state of constant fear, worry and a sense of impending doom. Anxiety is one among the many emotions a person experiences, not once but many a times. However if this feeling of fear, doom or worry occurs much too often it can be fatal. When anxiety attacks become frequent it is recognized as a mental illness in need of treatment. Like depression, anxiety can assume many forms. Sometimes the symptoms of anxiety are easily recognizable whereas in some people it can remain latent.
Symptoms of Anxiety
There are both physical as well as psychological symptoms of anxiety. Most people feel both when they experience an anxiety attack. The common identifiable symptoms of anxiety are –
- Heart burn
- Stomach ache
- Panic attacks
- Fear of people
- Fear of new environment
- Fear of eating socially
- Sense of impending doom
- Lack of concentration
Types of Anxiety
Anxiety disorder is identified in varying forms. Some people can experience more than one type of anxiety. It is also very common for people to suffer from anxiety and depression at the same time. It is key to identify the type of anxiety one is suffering from. If detected early, it can be treated by the person through various behavioral and lifestyle changes.
- Generalized Anxiety Disorder (GAD)–A person suffering from GAD continuously feels anxious and worried. This feeling doesn’t leave. Sometimes anxious and panic attacks can last for more than six months at a stretch.
- Social Anxiety Disorder – An incomprehensible fear of social events is identified as social anxiety disorder. In this a person experiences an intense fear of being embarrassed in public, of speaking in public, eating among other people and/ or even making small talks.
- Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD)–If a person has experienced a traumatic event in their lifetime, it can lead to PTSD. Upsetting dreams, inability to relax, vivid flashbacks of past events are identifiable symptoms of PTSD.
- Obsessive Compulsive Disorder (OCD) – The unnecessary need to keep re-checking things, or re-counting numbers or tidying up things are symptoms of OCD. Usually a person experiences OCD if there are underlying thoughts that are fearful or causes anxiety.
- Phobia –Phobia is pretty common – everyone has some kind of phobia. But when that fear usurps daily activity it can become a cause of worry.
What Can Help to Relieve Anxiety?
Among the many misconceptions people have about mental illness, one is that most forms of illnesses are untreatable. This isn’t true. Anxiety, panic attacks and depression can be cured. While there are several types of antidepressants and other medicinal options often prescribed by doctors, it is always better to start treatment at home without relying on medicines.
You would be surprised to know that there are several ways to curb anxious feelings without seeking medical help. Though it must be reiterated that there is nothing wrong with seeking medical advice especially if you want to hear the expert speak. What we are going to mention below are only lifestyle and behavioral changes that helps in regulating anxious feelings and panic attacks.
Ways to Reduce Anxiety Naturally
- Activity Helps Reduce Anxiety – One of the best ways of anxiety treatment without medication is staying active. It is often hard for a person suffering from anxiety to remain active. It is easier to sit at home, think and over-stress about small things and do very little. However if you want to tackle anxiety, you must engage yourself in useful activities. Take more interest in household chores, put in more hours at your workplace, hang out with friends. Do what makes you happy.
- Watch What You Eat and Drink –Things like caffeine, alcohol, oily and fried food, snacks etc. are enjoyable, but only for a short period of time. They have a long-term effect on your mental health. It is important that you watch what you are eating and drinking. Limit your caffeine levels to the minimum. Eat home-cooked, healthy meals. Maintain a diet.
- Sleep More, Rest More –Sleep is very important for a healthy mind. In most cases people suffering from anxiety and stress are sleep-deprived. They stay up late wondering and thinking. It does no one any good. It is recommended that you try to get a good 6-8 hours of sleep daily. If you are suffering from insomnia, count sheep, read a music, meditate, pray or simply listen to music. Do anything that calms you down.
- Meditate and Practice Deep Breathing –Starting your day on a good note is imperative for a good day, especially for someone battling anxiety. Meditation helps in calming the nerves. Practice deep breathing while meditating and you can start seeing the results in a few days.
- Exercise – Working out helps to keep the mind relaxed. Exercise every day. Start your day by practicing yoga. Stretch, walk a mile, jog a mile extra. Stretching the muscles helps in curbing anxious thoughts too.
- Include Supplements With Your Meals –Among the many things recommended under anxiety and relief, one that has been found to be quite effective is mood lifting supplements. The ones that are produced using naturally found herbs and plants are believed to work best. You will find several types available in the market. However be careful to choose something that has the following ingredients –
- St. John’s Wort
- Chamomile Extract
These are age-old ingredients which have been used in various civilizations over centuries to treat anxiety, stress and panic. They contain serotonin, essential vitamins and more that relaxes the muscles and stops anxious thoughts.
Anxiety disorder is one of the most common mental illnesses affecting millions of people. Women are more often diagnosed with anxiety disorder than men. The good news is that it can be treated with conscientious steps towards a healthier life. It is not difficult. You can do it! However if you think you should seek medical help, you should. There is no shame in seeking help.