Anxiety is the body’s natural response to dangerous, stressful, or unfamiliar situations. Feelings of fear or worry that can be mild or severe characterize it. At one point or the other, all of us experience feelings of anxiety. In stressful situations such as job interviews or exams, it’s normal to feel anxious. However, some people experience anxiety frequently and have trouble managing their worries. Their anxiety can seem to be out of control and can affect their regular routines.
Types of Anxiety Disorder
There are several variations of anxiety disorder. These include:
- Social anxiety disorder: a fear of being judged by society.
- Panic disorder: a condition in which individuals experience panic attacks.
- Phobia: extreme fear of certain objects or situations.
- Obsessive-compulsive disorder: an irrational need to perform repeated tasks.
- Separation anxiety disorder: fear of disconnecting from your home.
- Post-traumatic stress disorder: the onset of anxiety after a traumatic situation.
- Illness anxiety disorder: constant worrying over your health.
Ways To Deal With Anxiety
Anxiety and other mental health illnesses should be addressed quickly as postponing your health often leads to worse conditions. Many with mental health struggles wind up abusing a substance as a short term fix for the genuine issues they are facing. NIHM says that “ In 2014, 20.2 million adults in the U.S. had a substance use disorder, and 7.9 million had a substance use disorder and another mental illness.” If you or a loved one has an addiction and a mental illness, it is recommended to talk to a co-occurring substance abuse treatment center and get help from medical experts.
Whenever you feel your anxiety intensifying, practice the 4-7-8 breathing pattern, a technique developed by Dr. Andrew Weil. Lie down on the floor or sit in a comfortable chair to practice the technique. Through your nose, inhale silently and count to four. Hold the breath for seven seconds. Then, exhale out through the mouth while counting to 8. This breathing technique can also be used when you have trouble falling asleep. Learn more about this breathing method to help you calm down by clicking here.
Scents such as chamomile, lavender, and sandalwood have been proven to provide intense relief to counter anxiety. You can choose to burn a scented candle or use essential oil in a diffuser to help these powerful scents ease your anxiety.
Practice Yoga or Go for a walk
Practicing Yoga for a mere 15 minutes can have a positive impact on your body and mind. If you can, take a break from what is triggering the anxiety and practice mindful Yoga. However, that is not always accessible as some of us can get anxious at work. In such cases, one of the best ways to deal with anxiety is by quietly walking out of the stressful situation. Walking away from a nerve-racking situation can give your mind the time to focus on how to control the situation.
When you write down what you are feeling and how it affects your mood, it can help make the situation less stressful. Journaling is an extremely effective therapy for people who deal with anxiety. By getting the thoughts out of your head and onto the paper, you can make light of the situation and make it seem less frightening. Check out these amazing ways to utilize journaling.
Identify Your Triggers
In some cases, you can stop the onset of anxiety altogether by staving off stimulants such as tobacco, caffeine, and alcohol. In other cases, patients must have sessions with their therapists to understand what their specific triggers are.
Some common anxiety triggers can be driving, workplace environment, trauma, pain, phobias, or other illnesses such as depression and overcoming drug addiction. When you manage to identify your triggers, the next step is to limit exposure.
Mindful meditation takes time and patience to get right, but it can help severely anxious people deal with their anxieties better when regularly practiced. It can also help dismiss negative thoughts and stop them from accelerating.
Cognitive Behavioral Therapy
CBT is a therapy that can help treat mental health disorders. The therapist attempts to identify individual patients’ triggers and works with them to change self-destructive behaviors.
Eating healthy can help reduce your anxiety and keep it away. Consuming healthy food and supplements such as green tea, dark chocolate, and omega-3 fatty acids can help anxiety symptoms from escalating.
Working out at least 4-5 times a week and having a healthy sleep pattern can also help you deal with your anxiety. To keep your mind healthy, it is best to maintain a healthy relationship with your friends and family.
Talk To You Doctor
If you feel like your anxiety symptoms are aggravating, and the steps above aren’t helping, it’s time to schedule an appointment with your doctor. A mental health practitioner can prescribe medications to curb your anxiety.
Anxiety can be a part of everyone’s life, but it should, in no way, take over your everyday life. If you find yourself dealing with extreme anxiety, it’s important to remember that it is treatable with medications and therapy. With the right treatment plan, you should be able to deal with anxiety and live an enjoyable life.