Comforting Words For Someone With Anxiety
Signs Of An Anxiety Attack
These are some of the more common mental and physical symptoms of anxiety:
- feelings of danger, panic, or dread
- nervousness or restlessness
Its also possible to experience an anxiety and panic attack simultaneously. The quick coping strategies mentioned above may also help with a panic attack.
Other mindful strategies to cope with panic attacks include focusing on an object, repeating a mantra, closing your eyes, and going to your happy place.
Encourage Her To Do Something About Her Anxiety Disorder
Being empathetic and supportive is helpful. But if she isnt working at overcoming anxiety disorder, your empathy and support might only enable her to remain stuck.
Anxiety disorder only resolves when a person works at it. Anxiety disorder seldom resolves on its own.
Be an encourager, not an enabler. Encourage your loved one to seek the necessary help. And then, encourage and support her as she works at making healthy behavioral change.
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Do Let Them Know Youre Here For Them
When learning how to help someone with anxiety, you may want to explain to the person that youve noticed that they seem more anxious lately and that you want to help.
This will typically come as a welcome relief to the person, as they realise that they dont have to carry the burden of their anxiety alone. Having this conversation gives the person a chance to see that they have people who care about them, who want to listen and who want them to feel better. Someone suffering from anxiety could also tell you ways you can help manage their anxiety symptoms.
Encouraging Support From Professionals
Encourage your loved one to first make an appointment with their primary care physician in order to rule out medical conditions that might be causing the symptoms. Once medical conditions have been eliminated, the primary care provider can recommend a therapist for treatment. As much as possible go with your loved one to their doctor appointments . This enables you to make sure the doctor or therapist is getting the entire picture of what is going on as you may notice symptoms of your loved ones depression or anxiety that they are unable to see. Regardless if you can go with them or not, do help them make a list of their symptoms to provide to the doctor and encourage them to make and keep their appointments. Consistency with appointments and following recommended treatments are key to recovery.
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Offer To Be An Accountability Partner
Effective coping strategies for anxiety exist but may sometimes seem overwhelming if they are out of a persons comfort zone. Having a supportive accountability partner can increase the likelihood of engaging in these positive activities.
For example, physical activity is beneficial for people with generalized anxiety disorder. It can be helpful to realize and accept the impairments of anxiety and adjust your suggestions as necessary. Going to the gym or running a race may be helpful for some people but not for others. You can start small and then modify your suggestions as the person grows more comfortable with exercise. For example, suggest going on a walk outside together or doing a gentle yoga video at home.
Seek Out Ways Of Managing Anxiety
Persons with anxiety should try to manage their anxiety symptoms along with seeking professional help. The clue to answering the How can I help? question lies in the patients behavioral patterns and everyday activities.
Unfortunately, many persons with anxiety tend to indulge in harmful activities to overcome their anxiety problems. Such dangerous activities include substance abuse, excessive drinking, drug overdose, and smoking.
As you may know, such habits are false short-cuts to dealing with anxiety. Indulging in such bad habits can worsen the existing anxiety symptoms. Therefore, encourage the individual struggling with anxiety to indulge in productive activities at home.
Various approaches can help a person with anxiety manage anxiety at home. Some of these approaches for managing anxiety at home include:
- Indulging in physical activities for at least half an hour every day helps the body release endorphins. Endorphins are brain chemicals that aid in stabilizing mood and behavior.
- Deep breathing workouts.
- Developing a good sleep regimen.
- Refraining from taking brain stimulants such as caffeine, alcohol, and other drug-like substances.
- Practicing mindfulness to help an anxious brain to calm down.
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Dont Hide Your Real Feelings So You Dont Hurt Your Friends
Let your friend know that youre there for them. Admit if you dont know the best course of action to help them feel better. Be willing to explore current research and effective techniques for minimizing the frequency and intensity of anxiety symptoms.
While it may not always make sense to you, understanding your friend or family members triggers for anxiety can help you best support them as they navigate challenging environments or situations.
Try A Grounding Exercise
During a panic attack or anxiety episode, people might feel disconnected from the world around them. Grounding is a great way to refocus someones attention back to reality.
Here are some grounding techniques to try together:
Feel the floor beneath your feet
Gravitys a trip, yall. Since we cant concentrate on everything at once, our selective attention doesnt typically notice things like the feeling of the floor beneath our feet or the chair were sitting on. So, ask your friend if you could take a moment together to just notice the physical world thats holding them up.
Focus on your breath
Listen to the world around you
Lyons recommends turning your friends attention to a repetitive sound or music. Just make sure its slow and soothing, like the hum of a heater or the sound of a soft piano piece. The consistency and repetitions can be very comforting.
Meditation is worth the hype. Its a great way to reduce stress and alleviate anxiety. Ask your friend to participate in 10 minutes of silent meditation or guided imagery. Psst. Heres a Greatist guide to meditation for anxiety.
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Anxiety Can Be Triggered By Different Things
Different situations and environments can bring on anxiety. Public places, meeting people, work and social events can be very anxiety-inducing for some people. If your friend has social anxiety, they might be worried that people are going to laugh at them, or that they will say or do something embarrassing. They will probably be worrying about it before, during and after the event. So you can see that its a very intrusive condition.
Dont Forget To Take Care Of Yourself
Supporting an individual with mental conditions such as anxiety can be pretty challenging. There are high chances you might get overwhelmed in the process of helping an anxious loved one. However, dont worry since you arent alone. Several people have unsuccessfully tried to help people with anxiety.
However, it takes patience and effort to help someone with anxiety. Therefore, you should first take care of your mental priority before embarking on helping such individuals. Kindly consider these points below to help you take care of your mental health.
Avoid Burdening Yourself Be easy on yourself and strive to save the energy you need to deal with your life.
Try sharing your part with other people close to the individual you want to help. A group approach works faster in this case. The process will also give you effective results while dealing with a person with anxiety.
Get a Support System Absorbing plenty of information can end up stressing your brain. Try sharing your ideas, feelings, and details with a person whom you trust.
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How Do You Calm Someone With Anxiety
When you notice someone feeling anxious you can:
- Provide validation. Dont dismiss their anxieties. This can just make matters worse. Instead, validate their feelings and make it clear that you hear them.
- Encourage grounding. Try grounding techniques together like deep breathing. This can help bring the person into the present moment and out of an anxious spiral.
- Determine your support role. Try to distract your friend with activities, do helpful tasks for them, or simply be there for them and provide a positive presence.
Dos And Donts Of Helping Someone With Anxiety
- It is challenging to love someone that lives with anxiety
- Some of the ways that friends/family try to help can make anxiety worse
- There are many dos and donts for those who have loved ones with anxiety
- Your support is going to be a big part of their recovery
- If you personally have never experienced an anxiety disorder, it is helpful to remember that the experience of living with anxiety is typically not what most people imagine
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The Do’s And Don’ts Of Anxiety
With that in mind, it’s time to go over some tips on how to help a friend with anxiety. Note that every person is different and has different needs. There are some people who want to talk about their anxieties, and there are others who may have never mentioned it. So even with these do’s and don’ts, it’s hard to know exactly what you should do. However, this can be a helpful guide.
Dealing with anxiety is an uphill battle, and it does take a toll on others around them. Anxiety can strain relationships, and may even cause significant stress on a loved one. Some people find that they actually start developing anxieties of their own.
But a supportive friend is an extremely effective way to treat your own anxiety. Learn from the above tips to better understand how to help your friend, family member, or a partner and you’ll give them the best opportunity to overcome their anxiety and grow closer to you as a result.
Those that love someone with anxiety may feel helpless that they cannot help their partner or friend. Anxiety is treatable, but its also a very individual experience. Learning more about anxiety is the best thing you can do for them, as well as encouraging them if they decide theyre ready to treat it.
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Treatments For Anxiety Disorders
Depending on the anxiety disorder, there are multiple treatments available, many of which have better outcomes when paired together, such as medications combined with talk therapy.
If you need assistance, there are numerous mental health resources in Canada.
Luckily, there are multiple prescription medications that can help with generalized anxiety disorder. Felix offers several types of generic and brand-name anxiety medications that help with long-term anxiety treatment, such as SNRIs and SSRIs.
SSRIs: Selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors are popular antidepressants that work by balancing the levels of serotonin in the brain.
SNRIs: Serotonin and norepinephrine reuptake inhibitors work very similarly to SSRIs with the key difference being the neurotransmitter, norepinephrine, is also included.
Depending on other factors and if you have been diagnosed with another mental illness, antidepressants and antianxiety medications are sometimes combined with other medications, such as mood stabilizers. It’s important to keep in mind that all medication comes with the risk of side effects.
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Know What Kind Of Help To Offer To The Person With Anxiety
The best way to help a person with anxiety is to first listen to the side of their story. Based on the conversation you have with the person, you can know how to help that person. Take a step in advance if you think the person wont be willing to engage in a conversation with you. Some persons with anxiety are hesitant to open up about their anxiety problems.
Engage the person with anxiety in a gentle conversation. Ask what help you can accord them in your discussion. Apart from that, let the person know that you are always willing and available to help them.
There are several ways you can use to approach an individual with anxiety. For instance, you can call the person if a person-to-person meeting isnt feasible. You can also text or email them if they need help from you.
This idea works well, especially for persons with social anxiety disorder. People with phobias and social anxiety disorder usually avoid person-to-person conversations or interactions. Nonetheless, these people still need help.
What Are Some Treatments For Someone Experiencing Anxiety
Anxiety has been a diagnosable condition for many years, and there has been no shortage of potential treatments to deal with this debilitating condition. Thankfully, while the number of treatment options can seem overwhelming, there are also a variety of potential sources to find help. This includes the National Mental Health Hotline, which can be reached at 866-903-3787. Other resources include:
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Learn Everything You Can About Anxiety Disorder Then Help Her By Providing Ongoing Information Support And Reassurance
They say that knowledge is power. This is particularly true with anxiety disorder. If you want to help an anxiety disorder sufferer, become an expert on the condition. The more you know about anxiety disorder, the more helpful you can be.
If you are truly interested in learning about anxiety disorder, we have many public pages that provide an overview of anxiety disorder. A good place to start is the Anxiety 101 section and our Anxiety Disorder Symptoms section. Better yet, become a Recovery Support member and learn the complete details of anxiety disorder, how it affects the body, and what can be done to overcome it.
Oftentimes, anxiety disorder sufferers can become so mired in their struggle that they have difficulty seeing the forest for the trees. A knowledgeable support person can help them find their way and reassure them that everything is going to be okay.
Ongoing guidance and reassurance can play a pivotal role in recovery, especially with anxiety disorder recovery.