Anxiety is common at some time in everyone’s life. It is a fear or reaction to stressful or dangerous events. When the anxiety does not subside naturally once life quiets down, then individuals can be suffering from the more chronic condition, called Generalized Anxiety Disorder. Referred by medical professionals as GAD, this is a syndrome of feeling fear and anxiety when no real stress or danger exists. The symptoms can include a fear of worry and dread without explanation. Sweaty palms and a racing heart may exist as well as insomnia. Low energy and lack of socialization are also other symptoms.
Many individuals hide their anxiety and do not seek treatment as embarrassment can occur. This is an error as anxiety and other mental disorders are no longer as stigmatized as they were years ago. Especially after Covid-19 more individuals now are suffering from anxiety as Covid did make individuals worldwide more anxious than ever.
When to seek treatment for anxiety disorder?
When anxiety overwhelms an individual that the work and social life are impacted it is time for treatment. Some individuals do experience such severe anxiety that they lapse into a total panic attack where they may feel as if they are dying and can have such a rapid heartbeat and breathing difficulties that a trip to the local emergency room may be in order. Panic attacks can come on suddenly without any factors for why these occur. Usually, panic attacks happen after years of suffering from anxiety. A panic attack creates even more anxiety so it becomes a vicious cycle.
Any type of anxiety that lasts for weeks, months, or years should be treated as soon as noticed to avoid a lifetime of panic attacks and misery. Although a psychiatrist or psychologist can diagnose anxiety, a good family physician also can, and many individuals “self-diagnose” themselves as they find information online and realize they are suffering from chronic anxiety.
There are a variety of treatments for anxiety
Many psychologists and psychiatrists do recommend meditation, exercise, and eating and sleeping enough. Talk therapy might assist and this can even be done remotely now as there are many therapists and psychoanalysts online now that do remote counseling, Family physicians also may suggest group therapy for individuals with anxiety. Medications might be prescribed such as anti-anxiety medication or anti-depressants as usually anxiety and depression are linked.
Determining the causes of the anxiety is important in the treatment of anxiety. Sometimes outside influences such as financial pressures or marital struggles contribute to anxiety. Other times there are certain fears and phobias that are genetic and also “learned behaviors.” Learned behaviors are initially a response to a bad experience but the experience stays in the mind of affected individuals and keeps them from experiencing life to the fullest. Treatment for learned behaviors that produce anxiety will generally involve a technique called Exposure Therapy, where the anxious person is slowly introduced to the fear-producing scenario a bit at a time and over time learns not to fear it. Exposure therapy is oftentimes used to overcome Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD).
Treatment for anxiety is not usually a cure
Since there could be a genetic predisposition to being anxious plus the fact that stressful situations occur all through life, anxiety is usually approached with methods to curtail it not cure it. Some rather unusual treatments for anxiety also exist such as acupuncture or yoga and these have proven effective for some sufferers. Behavior modification does work generally and this is done by teaching anxious individuals how to keep control of their emotions in situations without experiencing too much anxiety. Anxiety can be put into context as an overreaction to everyday life occurrences and behavior modification works by a de-escalation of overly emotional states of mind. Positive responses are taught in place of negative ones.
A good thorough physical can be recommended as part of the treatment for anxiety. Some anxiety disorders are because by vitamin or physical problems such as an overactive or underactive thyroid. Vitamin D deficiency is notorious for causing symptoms of depression and anxiety and blood work might be ordered before anxiety treatment begins. This also ensures that no medications if prescribed will adversely affect the anxiety treatment. Undiagnosed medical problems or nutritional deficiencies can count for a great many cases of anxiety.
Home treatments for anxiety can work
Especially if anxiety is only minor, home remedies can assist in anxiety treatment. Certain foods have nutrients and amino acids that balance brain chemistry and lead to a sense of well-being. Hot showers or soaking in a bathtub for a half-hour will rejuvenate and relax muscles and the mind. Getting a massage can also relieve tensions that cause anxiety. Simply going for a walk or out into nature can also alleviate anxiety. Harvard health actually published a study on how certain foods can eliminate anxiety and depression.
What many individuals do not realize in the treatment of anxiety is also that chiropractors can be useful as they are specially trained many times in nutrition, wellness, and relaxation techniques. Over the past few years, more individuals do seek treatment for mild anxiety from chiropractors who have had special training. Spinal adjustments by a chiropractor can relieve stress remarkably well for some individuals.
Of course, extreme anxiety treatment should be done through coordination with a licensed psychotherapist or psychologist especially if everyday life is negatively impacted by anxiety.
Seek treatment for anxiety ASAP
It is a sad fact, but neural pathways in the brain are impacted by constant stress and anxiety and soon anxiety turns into depression which unfortunately is present usually in individuals who commit suicide. This makes it important to seek treatment for anxiety as soon as signs of overwhelming anxiety are noticed.
If home treatments do not work and there are no physical causes for anxiety, therapy and/or medication may be needed. There is no need to suffer from anxiety with all the options available for anxiety treatment available today. The sooner anxiety treatment is sought the sooner an individual can learn to lead a normal life again.
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