How To Calm Anxiety: 8 Natural Ways
Occasional anxiety is a normal human experience. Mild anxiety can occur before interviewing for a new job. A higher level of anxiety can occur from barely avoiding a car crash. And an even higher level may come with the loss of a loved one. There are also those people who experience anxiety persistently. However, learning how to calm anxiety is essential for your quality of life. Its also important to know what causes anxiety to determine the best way to alleviate it.
How To Help Someone With Anxiety: A Helpful Guide
Anxiety is a very common disorder, affecting 40 million adults every year worldwide.
Your loved one could have anxiety or even you could have an anxiety disorder. But how to help someone with anxiety?
It is important to know firsthand that anxiety is not a taboo or something to be ashamed of. No mental illness is, in fact.
Mental health is just as important, or even more so, as physical health. If you have an anxiety disorder, you are just as valid as someone with a broken arm.
If you know someone with anxiety, let them know that you are here to help and keep your word. But how to help someone with anxiety?
There are ways to help someone with anxiety. It might be tricky since people with anxiety are fragile and should be handled with a lot of love and care.
So if your loved one has anxiety and you are here because youre wondering how to help someone with anxiety, the first thing you need to know is that you need patience.
Practice Meditation And Deep Breathing
I personally have dealt with anxiety since my teenage years, said Doménica Jiménez, an Ecuador-based flight attendant with Eastern Airlines. A tip that helps me now in my career in the skies is slow breathing. Being mindful of my breathing by slowing inhaling and exhaling has been a game changer. It helps me to stay calm during turbulence and also do my job.
The meditation company Headspace has partnered with a number of air carriers, include JetBlue Airways and United Airlines, to provide in-flight guided relaxation. Nottingham noted that Delta now offers meditation classes led by Peloton instructors as part of its entertainment options.
Meditate or take a deep breath to help slow your breathing, she advised, adding that short meditations can help passengers feel more mindful and comfortable during a flight.
Also Check: How To Overcome Social Anxiety
Take Any Prescribed Medications
Depending on the severity of panic attacks, a doctor may prescribe a use-as-needed medication. These medications typically work fast.
However, these drugs can be highly addictive, so people should use them exactly as their doctor prescribes. Taken with opioids or alcohol, they can have life threatening adverse effects.
A doctor may also describe selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors, which can help prevent panic attacks from occurring in the first place.
Recognize That Youre Having A Panic Attack
Take away the fear that you may be dying or that impending doom is looming, both symptoms of panic attacks. This can allow you to focus on other techniques to reduce your symptoms.
It is not always possible to avoid triggers for a panic attack, but if you know what triggers it, this can help you understand that it is a panic attack and not something else.
Read Also: What Causes Anxiety Attacks For No Reason
How Are Anxiety Disorders Treated
Anxiety disorders can be treated by mental health professionals, or therapists. A therapist can look at the symptoms someone is dealing with, diagnose the specific anxiety disorder, and create a plan to help the person get relief.
A particular type of talk therapy called cognitive-behavior therapy is often used. In CBT, a person learns new ways to think and act in situations that can cause anxiety, and to manage and deal with stress. The therapist provides support and guidance and teaches new coping skills, such as relaxation techniques or breathing exercises. Sometimes, but not always, medication is used as part of the treatment for anxiety.
The End Of Everything: What A Panic Attack Feels Like
Only 16, Caroline, had her first panic attack a year ago. Her mother was dropping her off at her summer job at a local school when, without warning, a full-blown panic attack engulfed her. My heart started racing and my body felt so hot. I started to sweat and shake uncontrollably. My vision became distorted and my body felt limp, like a wet noodle, she says. For 20 minutes, until the panic attacked passed, Caroline refused to get out of the car. Her mother didnt know what to do.
Kirstie Craine Ruiz, 46, has lived with anxiety, panic attacks, and panic disorder for about ten years. For a long time, she had full-blown attacks 2-3 nights a week. I would usually awake to a racing heart or the feeling of my heart expanding in my chestas it might explodeFrom there, I would begin to panic and my heart would go even fasterand my body would shake so hard that it felt like I was having a convulsion. I could barely breathe and was usually pretty sure I was having a heart attack and that I was going to die. Sometimes Id go the ER and theyd hold me overnight because my heart would be going so fast and they couldnt get it to go down.
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How Do You Deal With Uncontrollable Anxiety
Any of the above steps should help you understand how to calm down anxiety. However, everyone may have different techniques and practices that better reduce or stop anxiety. The first step to take with uncontrollable anxiety is to seek professional help. A counselor or doctor can recommend the best strategies to help you regain control of your anxiety and find a way to manage it in your life.
The good news is anxiety is very treatable if you seek help, and many people notice an improvement in their anxiety after a few sessions with a trained professional.
Try 6 Meditations To Help Reduce Anxiety
Looking for more meditations to help you feel calm? The Headspace app offers subscribers several courses and single meditations on topics related to anxiety, including:
Managing Anxiety 10-day course. Cultivate a new perspective on fear and anxiety.
Unemployment Anxiety single meditation. Recognize and release stress about job loss and the future.
Letting Go of Stress 10-day course. Enjoy a healthier mind by developing your awareness of stress and learning how to reframe negative emotions.
Stressed single meditation. Notice what you’re holding onto and how to drop the preoccupying storyline.
Why can’t I sleep? single meditation. This exercise will help you practice calming the mind and body during the day, so you feel more ready for sleep when bedtime comes.
Difficult Conversations single meditation. The prospect of a difficult conversation can drive feelings of anxiety and fear, but by lesseing habits of reactivity and developing a calmer, more patient mindset, you can both listen and express yourself more clearly.
Recommended Reading: How To Calm A Racing Heart From Anxiety
What Is A Panic Attack
A panic attack is an intense wave of fear characterized by its unexpectedness and debilitating, immobilizing intensity. Your heart pounds, you cant breathe, and you may feel like youre dying or going crazy. Panic attacks often strike out of the blue, without any warning, and sometimes with no clear trigger. They may even occur when youre relaxed or asleep.
A panic attack may be a one-time occurrence, although many people experience repeat episodes. Recurrent panic attacks are often triggered by a specific situation, such as crossing a bridge or speaking in publicespecially if that situation has caused a panic attack before. Usually, the panic-inducing situation is one in which you feel endangered and unable to escape, triggering the bodys fight-or-flight response.
You may experience one or more panic attacks, yet be otherwise perfectly happy and healthy. Or your panic attacks may occur as part of another disorder, such as panic disorder, social phobia, or depression. Regardless of the cause, panic attacks are treatable. There are strategies you can use to reduce or eliminate the symptoms of panic, regain your confidence, and take back control of your life.
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How To Get Help
If anxiety gets to a point where you feel its impacting a lot on your daily life, this maybe the time you seek medical advice by speaking to your school nurse or GP. You can also have a look at the links below for further information.
- Acknowledge whats causing your anxiety
- Set challenges to tackle your anxiety
- Utilise coping strategies
Also Check: How Do You Know You Have Bad Anxiety
Whats The Symptoms For Anxiety
Signs and Symptoms Feeling restless, wound-up, or on-edge. Being easily fatigued. Having difficulty concentrating mind going blank. Being irritable. Having muscle tension. Difficulty controlling feelings of worry. Having sleep problems, such as difficulty falling or staying asleep, restlessness, or unsatisfying sleep.
How To Get A Sudden Spike In Anxiety Under Control
Whether you live with an anxiety disorder or have found the events of 2020 affecting your mood, managing your mental health is more important than ever. Experiencing a sudden spike in anxiety is a common issueone thats being experienced by more and more people.
Tonya Crombie, Ph.D., author of Stop Worrying About Your Anxious Child, points to a poll released by the American Psychiatric Association that reveals that 62% of Americans feel more anxious than they did at this time last year. That marks a sizable increase over APA polls of the past three years, in which the number has ranged between 32% and 39%.
When you consider the significant stressors brought on by a global pandemic, economic uncertainty, social unrest, bitter political divisions, and a contested presidential election, Crombie says, it is completely understandable why so many more people are feeling more anxious than ever before.
Here, learn what causes a sudden onset of anxiety, and how can it be managed.
Read Also: Can Dizziness Be A Sign Of Anxiety
Get Up 10 Minutes Earlier
Set your alarm for ten minutes earlier than you normally rise. It might sound awful , but this is a really great way to start your day off right. The majority of us hit snooze, set multiple alarms, and just try to stay in bed as long as possible. Your morning sets you up for the day a late start just leads more stress and anxiety. A morning of chaos leads to a day of anxiousness. So, rise ten minutes early and start your day off right.
When To See A Doctor
If you find that your feelings of anxiety are regularly preventing you from sleeping at night or affecting your day-to-day life, its important to reach out to a doctor or mental health specialist for help. There are a range of treatments and support available, reaching out to the right person is the first step to finding the right treatment for you.
Read Also: Do I Have Social Anxiety Disorder
But Firstwhats The Difference Between Anxiety And Regular Stress
From a big presentation at work to a mounting pile of laundry at home, everybody experiences stress to some degree. So, what makes stress different from anxiety?
Stress is a response to something uncomfortable, such as a busy schedule or upcoming deadline. It is usually short-lived and goes away after the trigger has passed.
Anxiety is a response to stress and is more persistent and ongoing. The cause of anxiety is also a bit more difficult to pinpoint. While you might feel stress about your busy week ahead, anxiety could show up as an intense fear of attending a work meeting or cause you to feel nauseous while youre in meetings for weeks. An anxious reaction is a bit more severe and long-term than stress.
Keep Lavender On Hand
Lavender is a traditional remedy that many people use to reduce stress and help them relax.
Research suggests it has a calming effect but doesnt lead to dependence or cause withdrawal symptoms. Using products that contain diluted lavender oil may help reduce or manage symptoms of anxiety.
However, the Food and Drug Administration does not regulate essential oils, and strengths and ingredients vary widely.
If you use lavender essential oil, make sure you:
- get your oil from a reputable source, such as a pharmacy
- follow the instructions for use
- avoid applying concentrated oil directly to the skin
- avoid using lavender with benzodiazepines because the combination can cause intense drowsiness
Read Also: Is Anxiety And Panic Attacks The Same Thing
Focus On The Fact That Planes Are Built To Withstand Turbulence
First and foremost, understand that the airplane is designed to fly through turbulence, said Laura Nottingham, an Atlanta-based flight attendant with Delta Air Lines. Nothing is wrong with the aircraft. Pilots are highly trained professionals and know how to expertly handle turbulence. There are various reasons turbulence occurs: wind, changes in air temperature, thunderstorms, etc.
She believes the best way to tackle fear is to understand it, so learning about the science of turbulence can put anxious passengers at ease. Focus on facts to avoid escalating into a state of worry.
Air turbulence is a common occurrence. It is a helpful technique to decrease travelers anxiety by helping them understand the effects of turbulence, echoed Yulanda Armstrong, an Eastern Airlines flight attendant and air transportation ground instructor in Guyana. In most instances, turbulence appears more detrimental than it may seem. The industry should communicate the rhetoric that turbulence should be expected as opposed to dreaded.
Try Muscle Relaxation Techniques
Another symptom of panic attacks is muscle tension. Practicing muscle relaxation techniques may help limit an attack. This is because if the mind senses that the body is relaxing, other symptoms such as rapid breathing may also diminish.
A technique called progressive muscle relaxation is a popular method for coping with anxiety and panic attacks.
This involves tensing up and then relaxing various muscles in turn. To do this: