Let’s take a day out of your life, your pulse is racing at a speed you didn’t think was possible, your palms are sweaty and for some reason, everything looks a lot gloomier than normal.You’re jittery, constantly on edge, and feel as though life itself is coming at you like a bullet train at full speed. You’re constantly suffering from an irritating headache and you’re always tired in spite of sleeping more than eight hours a night. You might be wondering: ‘what is going on with my body’ yet it is actually quite simple. You are suffering from anxiety.
Anxiety disorder: symptoms and causes
What is “Anxiety”?
Anxiety disorders are very real and can be quite terrifying. Today, many people around the world experience anxiety in their day-to-day lives without even knowing it. Lots of others suffer terribly from its symptoms. Anxiety can be caused by many factors with the most commonly found reason underlying them all. Stress . Of course, everyone at one point in their life will say ‘Golly I am so stressed’. Anxiety, however, can rear its ugly head even if you don’t recognize that you’re stressed. Whether it be that you’re not physically well or that you’ve experienced a traumatic incident or even if you have a lot to do in a short period of time, underlying all those issues is stress. Over time, these can build up into an overwhelming heap that results in anxiety taking over your body. This causes you to not feel right at all, hindering you from partaking in your normal activities.
If you are debilitated by anxiety, it can be quite tricky to determine. Anxiety has a vast array of symptoms that can be masked as physical but are rather mental representations of the stress the mind is under. This results in very real physical symptoms that can be quite scary. Among the most common physical symptoms are chest pain, heart palpitations, hyperventilation, insomnia, dizziness, nausea, and shortness of breath.
These symptoms elevate the levels of anxiety further if not identified. However, there are other symptoms that can affect your mental health. Whilst not only altering your personality, these mental symptoms to help with escalating levels of anxiety. Such as constantly worrying about every little thing to the point beyond paranoia and not understanding the concern.
People with anxiety can often recognize it but feel helpless when trying to overcome it. Living with anxiety can very easily to turn into depression which only inhibits your ability to live a full, valuable life. This is why most people who do suffer turn to prescribed medication to help relieve anxiety’s dire effects.This being because they believe it’s the only solution to their problem. This may seem like the right solution but may end up hindering your life in a different way due to their adverse side effects.
Anti-anxiety medications and why to avoid them
If you were told you could find relief from your anxiety by taking a pill every day would you take it? Of course! Most people would agree without batting an eyelid. The real question is of course whether you would still take that pill if you were told that it had the potential to make your anxiety worse. There are a vast number of Anti-anxiety medications on the market. It is important to understand how they work.
Anxiety is commonly treated with Benzodiazepines, more commonly known as Xanax, Ativan, Klonopin or Valium, that were designed to bring immediate relief to anxiety sufferers. The medication takes effect within a mere thirty minutes, allowing it to help those who suffer from severe anxiety that leads to panic attacks. It works by putting the nervous system into slo-mo, causing the body to relax completely, both mentally and physically. Miracle drug you must be thinking! Quite the contrary actually. Anti-anxiety medications often have negative side effects.
What the doctors seem to omit to mention are the extreme side effects caused by the nervous system being inhibited, that throw you into a state of delirium that is far from being natural. These side effects include memory confusion, slurred speech, very poor coordination, dizziness, headaches, drowsiness and impaired vision. How is that any better than your original state of distress. It essentially takes away one problem by replacing it with another. Not only are the side effects a problem, but if you wish to stop the treatment it is extremely difficult. Benzodiazepines are extremely hard to come off as they cause intense withdrawal symptoms to the consumer. This often, ironically, causes you to become more anxious than you were to begin with.
This, of course, would cause a normal individual to become quite apprehensive with regards to their treatment. It would be perfectly natural to feel conflicted if a professional were offering you a quick, yet controversial, fix, to your problem. That is why it is important to know there are other options available to treat anxiety that would not only benefit you and your health in the short term but also the long term. Helping you essentially treating the root of the problem instead of what lies purely on the surface.
We are not suggesting that all anxiety meds are all bad, all the time. We simply recommend looking at a few free home remedies and some natural remedies for anxiety.
Alternative methods of treatment
Decreasing anxiety symptoms with herbal remedies:
There are a number of natural remedies for anxiety. There is a way for you to be anxiety free with these alternative herbal remedies! We will give you some ideas on how to deal with anxiety naturally.
Throughout cultures all around the worlds, there are many herbal alternatives that have special properties suited to different ailments. Often these herbal remedies are a lot less harmful to the body, as they just use the bodies composition in conjunction with their properties to restore your health to where it should be.
If you want to know How to stop anxiety, or at the very least reduce it, take a look at a few of the following herbs for anxiety, panic attacks and stress.
Try valerian for treating anxiety and insomnia
There is a brilliant herb called Valerian that can be used as an effective substitute for Valium or Xanax. It is native to Asia and Europe and has been used throughout history to treat ailments, especially insomnia. The medicinal part of the plant is the root, that is dried and can either be taken by capsule or as a tea. As expected from herbal medications it can take up to two weeks before the treatment is fully effective. But has been found to be extremely effective for those who suffer from insomnia and it provides great anxiety relief.
Another herb that works like valium is Kava kava or Piper methysticum as some people call it. It has been used for hundreds of years by Pacific Islanders, initially as a ceremonial drink.
Recent clinical research has shown that it has a great calming effect and give the user a feeling of tranquility and relaxation. It has numerous other health benefits and is available as a supplement from health food stores.
Drink chamomile and green tea to calm down naturally
Among the herbal remedy collection, there is of course tea! What would history be without herbal tea and all its benefits? As an anxiety sufferer, it would be highly beneficial to incorporate chamomile tea into your daily regime to help you to remain calm. With chemicals such as luteolin, apigenin, and bisabolol that have to be known to soothe the nervous system it aids well in calming anxious people and insomniacs. You could routinely add 3-4 cups of chamomile tea into your day if you are extremely anxious or rather just have a cup when you start to feel anxious or stressed to help combat it. Through providing relief for your anxiety it offers you the opportunity to analyze the situation in which you were stressed, allowing you to do things differently in the future to help prevent you from feeling the way you did originally. You can also find chamomile capsules if you are not fond of drinking tea.
Another natural remedy for anxiety are herbal remedies for anxiety include that of green tea! Whilst it is very well known for its digestive benefits, for losing weight and cleansing the system, this great herbal tea is also perfect for those who suffer from anxiety and tiredness. The excellent herbal remedy is suitable for anxiety as it has a chemical called L-theanine that has very prominent calming effects on the brain when consumed. Again, aiding you in combatting the worry and fear that anxiety contributes to your everyday life. Try incorporating 4-7 cups of green tea into your daily routine to help ease your anxiety symptoms efficiently.
Use lemon balm to quickly lower stress and anxiety
Another herb useful in aiding anxiety sufferers is simply Lemon Balm, a simple aromatic soother. Lemon balm is related to the mint family and has aromatherapy properties that help reduce anxiety and stress symptoms quickly and efficiently. It is believed that the herb has calming effects that serve as a sort of tranquilizer, helping to reduce any feelings of distress. Simply buy it as a supplement, either in liquid form or in capsules, preferably at night when you can relax and allow it to help you sleep.
How to get rid of anxiety? Try Ginkgo Biloba. It is a very popular herbal treatment. Although used mainly for its memory-enhancement properties, it has also been found to be a great stress reliever. Studies have shown it to provide very similar benefits to benzodiazepines.
Another gentle herb that has been in use for hundreds of years is the Passion Flower. It has a calming effect resulting from stimulating the activity of the neurotransmitter GABA. It is one of the mild remedies for stress and can be used safely with other natural remedies for anxiety.
Hypericum perforatum , or St. John’s Wort as it is commonly known is a herbal supplement for overcoming worry and fear. Many clinical studies have been conducted and its ability to treat anxiety, as well as depression, have been well documented.
What’s the bottom line: Be open to natural remedies that can aid you on a day to day basis to eliminate the anxiety and its symptoms. Allowing you to work through the main issues that are causing the anxiety in the first place without severe side-effects.
Physical activities for getting rid of anxiety
Numerous studies have proved the calming and stress relieving effect exercise provides. Most people know the feeling of relaxation after physical activity. Exercise is good for the body, mind and soul. Most of us are aware of this, yet we tend to neglect this simple stress relieving solution.
Exercise more (it’s a non-drug anxiety treatment!)
You do not have to spend hours in the gym or run 10 kilometers every day. Make exercise fun and interesting. There are a number of ways to do this. Get you friends involved, walk the dog, cycle to work or join an exercise club. All you want to do is get the heart rate up. Don’t make it a chore that you dread.
Don’t rush it, build it up slowly, but make it part of your daily routine. You will feel the benefits immediately.
Have walks in nature for mental relaxation
A pleasurable way to achieve this, that will further improve your relaxation, is a walk in nature or along the beach (if you are fortunate enough to live near one). It does not have to be a 3-hour hike, but a simple walk through a local forest or lush park will do wonders for your anxiety.
The role of breathing in anxiety control
Everyone knows that breathing is an essential aspect of living. The thing is people all over the world underestimate the importance of this simple action. As an anxiety sufferer, it can help you rid yourself of the fear and stress that can engulf you at any given moment.
When you’re feeling anxious, short of breath and experiencing chest pain your first reaction would be of course to give in to the feeling. You begin to panic, causing your anxiety levels to rise even higher. This is when it’s essential to know some truly effective breathing exercises that can bring you back into control.
When you’re having a panic attack or feeling extremely anxious it is common to become out of touch with reality and your surroundings. This aids in making you feel isolated and scared thus only making it worse. Being able to ground yourself in that moment is the key to being in control. Grounding oneself can be achieved through mindful breathing techniques that allow you to once again gain control of your body and mind resulting in your relaxation. When you begin to panic it is important to notice that you are breathing in a shallow, superficial manner (almost hyperventilating) that causes you to feel out of breath.
Learn mindful breathing technique to relax and stay present
In order to combat this, you would need to stop whatever it is you are doing and become conscious of your breathing. Place your hand on your stomach and take a deep breath in through your nose. Make sure that your stomach or diaphragm area expands when you inhale and goes down again when you exhale. Do this 5-10 times allowing your body to fully relax. You will notice that you will feel calmer and in control of yourself and your surroundings. This will help to return you to a normal breathing pattern whilst overcoming feelings of panic.
Try holding your breath for stress relief
Another highly beneficial breathing exercise in helping you overcome the worry and fear anxiety instills in you is actually holding your breath! No, not until your blue in the face, but actually just enough to allow your cells to be rejuvenated with oxygen. Due to your shallow breathing whilst being stressed, it is common for your body to harbor a lot of carbon dioxide within your cells which contributes to your feeling of malaise. The theory is to extend your inhalation, for example, five counts then hold it for five counts then exhale for five counts. This causes the body to absorb more oxygen and efficiently exhale all the pent up carbon dioxide in the body. It also helps to calm the mind as you are forced to become conscious of your breathing.
Use scents to reduce anxiety symptoms
Aromatherapy also has amazing calming effects and is know to relax and reduce anxiety and improving one’s mood.
There are a number of herbal extracts or essential oils that can be used to great effect. They all have slightly different effects but all will improve your overall feeling.
Experiment with a few of the following and see which ones work best for you:
Basil, Clary Sage, Frankincense, Geranium, Jasmine, Lemon, Lavender, Marjoram, Roman Chamomile, Sandalwood and Ylang-Ylang.
How To Use Essential Oils
There are a number of ways the oils can be used.
One of the most common methods is to add a few drops into a warm bath for calming, relaxing soak. They could also be added to your diffuser or add a drop or two to your pillow in the evening. Some are quite powerful so be careful not to add too much that the aroma is overpowering.
They can also be inhaled by adding a few drops to the palms of your hands, rubbing them to release the aroma and breathing in through your nose with your hands cupped over your nose.
Using diet to deal with anxiety and depression
Before you turn to prescribed medication for your anxiety it would be very important to reflect on your nutritional habits. This is another natural remedy for anxiety What are you putting in your body and how it is benefiting your health.
Get plenty of fatty acids instead of anxiety meds
Anxiety breeds off malaise. You may not realize how your nutritional habits are impacting on your mental health. Often people who are highly stressed don’t eat well. This has an adverse effect on your emotional state of being.
No herbs at hand? Have a quick snack to manage anxiety
Starving your body of nutritious food leads to a weakened immune system which may be already compromised by your stress levels. Thus only adding stress to your body whilst trying to function normally. By replacing your high in sugar or oily meal with a more naturally balanced one with a higher nutritional value you are aiding your body in combatting stress.
It comes down to this: The higher the quality of fuel you put in your car, the longer the engine lasts.
This applies to humans too. Especially those whose performance is already compromised by stress. You have even more of a reason to make sure your diet is higher in fatty acids, vitamins, and minerals to help with neural functions and boosting your immune system. It is also very important to eat in general.
Have your morning meals to stay calm and balanced
If you are riddled with stress and anxiety you will feel a hundred times worse when your blood sugar level drops. It is essential when fighting symptoms of anxiety that you eat regularly, along with snacks in between meals that will help to maintain a normal sugar level throughout the day.
Anxiety can be a horrid ordeal that many people face on a daily basis. Before reaching out for prescribed medical help, try these at-home remedies that can help you guide yourself back to a more stable and enjoyable life with only great side-effects!