What Causes Sudden Onset Of Anxiety
A sudden onset of anxiety can be triggered by a plethora of thingsfrom a major event, like a death in the family, to everyday stressors, such as work or budget worriesbut sometimes it can be caused by seemingly nothing at all or issues we arent aware of.
Our brains are designed to monitor for danger and let us know when these signs appear, says Karin Kassab, MA, psychologist and CEO of Clarity Counseling Center. Although it can feel like it at times, anxiety is not your enemy. Its your brain trying to keep you safe. Think about your anxiety as a security system thats just a little too sensitive.
Abrupt feelings of nervousness and apprehension are often caused by a specific anxiety trigger. It could be a conversation or a place or a smell that triggers anxiety, says Silvi Saxena, MSW, LSW, a licensed therapist at Choosing Therapy. It can be a result of focusing thoughts on something that is stressful and worrisome, something that doesnt have a solution or worrying about worst case scenarios. Major life events can trigger a series of anxiety attacks and it can become easy to get into a pattern of negative thinking, which worsens anxiety. As a result, its crucial to try to understand your anxiety triggers, in order to find ways to manage it.
We’re Able To Compartmentalize
Being high-functioning with anxiety can be confusing to friends and loved ones. You may see us enjoying professional success, and it may even seem as though things come easily to us. Internally, however, things are often much more complicated. “People with anxiety are likely to feel more anxious in certain areas of their life, and less anxious in others. For example, someone might experience heightened anxiety at work and an ease in their anxiety when they’re with friends. For others, the opposite might be true. As a result, depending on the setting you meet someone in and how their anxiety operates, you may not encounter their anxiety,” says Madison McCullough, a therapist based in New York City.
Personally, it can be easy to compartmentalize when it comes to my work: When I sit down at the computer, I feel present and ready to go. But when I’m done for the day, I may feel spent, anxious, and completely lack the drive that helped me function during the workday. Any desire to carry out social plans is overshadowed by anxiety that I’ve been ignoring from 9 to 5.
What Not To Do
Whats tempting then is to start thinking about where these feelings came from. We feel the need to analyze what happened and figure out why we feel anxious now. But instead of a brief analysis, what usually happens next is this: We start to worry if these feelings will come back. We start to think through possible triggers over and over again. And we start to closely pay attention to any body signs that could mean anxiety coming up again.
Unfortunately, all these things only make anxiety worse. Analyzing is more often than not a bad idea. Anxiety is a complex experience and we probably wont be able to find their source. We rather make ourselves even more miserable if we continue to ruminate about where those feelings came from. And even if were lucky enough to find out where the anxiety came from, our feelings dont go away just because we know their source.
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To Find Peace Shift Your Attention And Intention
Ruminating about anxiety and anxiety’s cause means that’s where our thoughts are. The more we think about anxiety and what it’s doing to us and how paralyzing it is, the stronger it grows. Like anything , what we attend to is what flourishes. In constantly wondering “why” we are giving our precious attention to anxiety and its strengths.
What if, instead, we were to ignore anxiety’s strengths and pay attention to our character strengths? You’re sitting at work and are suddenly struck by a feeling of intense anxiety. The more you focus on how it feels and the more you focus on wondering why it happened, the stronger and longer it will be. Instead, think of the fact that you are stronger than your anxiety.
Pay attention to what’s been positive in your day thus far. Remember what you’re great at and do something within one of your strengths. Perhaps you pride yourself on your kindness you could take a quick break from what you’re doing and do a small random act of kindness for someone nearby.
Will you still feel anxious? Probably, at least at first, anyway. But because you’ve shifted your attention to your strengths rather than anxiety’s strengths and because you’re doing something intentional to shift your thoughts and actions, you’ll find that anxiety lessens its grip just a bit.
Signs Of An Anxiety Attack And 6 Effective Ways To Cope With It
An anxiety attack is the worst. The lights seem too bright your heart feels like it might explode out of your chest. Your body shakes. You may find yourself unable to breathe your chest hurts. You have an intense desire to escape, scream or cry. Your hands might twitch and you feel like you are going to be sick in just a few seconds.
Thats what an anxiety attack feels like. Sounds familiar? Well that used to be my story too.
On a normal day, I would just be hanging out with my friends and suddenly have a wave of panic wash over me. I couldnt breathe and felt like I was dying.
Anxiety attacks can strike unexpectedly.
In fact, it feels like the worst thing in the world, but the truth is its all caused by a massive boost of adrenaline that your brain sends into your bloodstream.
In todays post, Id like to break down the most common anxiety attack symptoms, plus share some personal tips on how to tame this beast.
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You Answered Yes To Question
If you answered yes to one or more of the questions, you might have an anxiety disorder. Most people deal with stress in their lives, but when stress begins to significantly interfere with our functioning and/or causes impairment, it might be more problematic than âeveryday stressâ. The good news is that anxiety disorders can be successfully treated. If you are experiencing any of the above symptoms, and think that they are negatively interfering with your life, it might be time to seek treatment!
It will be important to begin with a structured clinical evaluation by a professional to see if you meet criteria for an anxiety disorder, which will inform your treatment plan. Our mental health impacts many aspects of our lives, such as our physical health and our quality of life, which is why it is so important to address any mental health problems with effective treatments!
This material is not a substitute for the advice of a licensed professional. To begin your search for a mental health professional, go to the ADAA’s Therapist Directory.
Why Does It Happen At Night
Anxiety is a normal human emotion characterized by feelings of nervousness and worry. You may find yourself experiencing anxiety during stressful situations, such as a first date or job interview.
Sometimes, though, anxiety may linger around for longer than usual. When this happens, it can interfere with your daily and nightly life.
One of the most common times when people experience anxiety is at night. Many clinical trials have found that sleep deprivation can be a trigger for anxiety. Historically, research also suggests anxiety disorders are associated with reduced sleep quality.
Treating your nighttime anxiety and addressing your sleep issues are important steps in improving your quality of life.
There are manysymptoms of anxiety. Everyone experiences anxiety differently. Symptoms can happen anytime of the day, morning, or night. Common symptoms of anxiety include:
- feelings of nervousness, restlessness, or worry
- trouble falling asleep or staying asleep
- gastrointestinal problems
Another symptom a person with anxiety may also experience is a panic attack. A panic attack is an episode of extreme and intense fear, often accompanied by physical manifestations. The common symptoms of a panic attack include:
- a sense of impending doom
- increased heart rate and chest pains
- shortness of breath and throat tightness
- sweating, chills, and hot flashes
- dizziness or lightheadedness
- a feeling of detachment, or like nothing is real
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Six Simple Habits That Defeat Anxiety
Deanne Repich, Director: National Institute of Anxiety and Stress
If youre like most anxiety sufferers, you probably spend much of your day wrestling with physical symptoms, feeling afraid, or even hiding your anxious feelings from others. When stressors arise your racing heart, trembling, dizziness, obsessive thoughts and other symptoms take over.
Anxiety can keep you feeling trapped and once you feel this way, its difficult to know how or if you can ever feel better.
If you suffer from anxiety, take heart. Studies show that simple anxiety-reducing habits can go a long way toward improving how you feel.
Here are six simple habits you can use to defeat anxiety and take back control of your life.
What Strategies Are Often Used In Treating This Dual Diagnosis
Evidence-based research suggests that both anxiety and depression be treated at the same time.
Effective strategies often used in treating these co-occurring conditions include:
- Cognitive Behavioral Therapy CBT is often used to treat people with both disorders. Fears, anxieties and tendencies toward depression are managed by seeking out their root causes. Once uncovered, patients learn how to take control of their emotions and life.
- Antidepressant medications Often combined with CBT, these may be prescribed in treating both disorders. Selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors are new antidepressant drugs that produce fewer side effects than their predecessors.
- Exercise This can be very helpful for both disorders. Physical activity causes feel-good chemicals to be released in the body. This aids in relaxation and feeling of well-being.
- Relaxation techniques This typically involves meditation or mindfulness. These techniques can often help to remedy both disorders and improve quality of life.2
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Public Events Or Performances
Public speaking, talking in front of your boss, performing in a competition, or even just reading aloud is a common trigger of anxiety. If your job or hobbies require this, your doctor or therapist can work with you to learn ways to be more comfortable in these settings.
Also, positive reinforcements from friends and colleagues can help you feel more comfortable and confident.
Setbacks Are When Real Healing Is Taking Place
So, setbacks were actually a good thing. They were the result of my mind and body freeing up old energies and going through a process of healing. They were just doing what they needed to do to heal. All I could do was step back and allow them to do so, however unpleasant it felt at times.
Previously I had spent years trying to interfere and manipulate my experience, trying to feel better, different, fix myself and it just made things worse and exhausted me. My real problem is that I wanted an instant way out, one that didnt entail any kind of suffering, one that was impossible.
My attitude was that it felt good, I would relax and get on with my day, and if it felt bad, then I would fight. But how could I ever hope to recover in this way? All I was doing was shutting off the healing process and not allowing it to take place.
This is what true surrender is. It is accepting that you have no control and just leaving it to your mind and body to heal themselves. For a drug addict to truly heal and recover, he has to go through a period of withdrawal a detox. This is the mind and bodys way of getting the toxins out of the system and in doing so it feels unpleasant. But without this process, there is no recovery.
It is the same thing when recovering from anxiety. You have to go through a process of feeling uncomfortable as all the old anxious energies come up to be released and your body heals.
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When Anxiety Strikes Without A Cause
Sometimes, we experience anxiety because of an anxiety trigger. People can be diagnosed with different types of anxiety disorders, each with specific symptoms and causes. Additionally, people can experience situational anxiety where something in particular causes anxiety symptoms to flare. A student might experience test anxiety severe enough to negatively impact performance or a parent’s anxiety might become heightened and nearly debilitating when he/she thinks about the various harm that could come to the child. The anxiety that is triggered by something can be painful, limiting, and downright awful, especially when one can’t avoid anxiety triggers. Equally painful, limiting, and downright awful is when anxiety strikes without a cause whatsoever.
Experiencing Anxiety Without A Cause
A common complaint among people who live with anxiety is that it is all-encompassing and even paralyzing. It impacts thoughts, feelings, and behaviors. It limits what people feel able to do in their lives. The worry and fear, as well as the physical symptoms of anxiety, can nearly shut us down.
When anxiety strikes without a cause, it’s confusing and maddening. Sometimes things are made worse because people around us want to know “why.” Why do we have panic attacks? Why can’t we breathe correctly? Why are we avoiding the world?
When we’re anxious but can’t explain why, either to ourselves or to others, we feel even worse. Sometimes, as we wrack our brains for a reason for our anxiety, our anxiety increases. When this happens, it’s not uncommon to shut down even further, nearly becoming paralyzed by anxiety and our struggle to explain it.
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Anxiety Is Not Uncommon
Anxiety is scary. It gnaws at you wherever you go, sapping the joy out of life. You could be safe at home with your family and still feel it a constant worry buzzing in the back of your mind that can grow into panic. It can make your most important tasks feel impossible. Who can work, drive a car, or care for children when they can only focus on their intense feelings of fear? Its even worse when you have no idea why youre anxious. If you cant understand it, how can you explain it to your family, friends, or co-workers? Anxiety can make you feel isolated, and no one should have to go through a scary time alone.
If youre experiencing anxiety, youve got company. According to the Anxiety and Depression Association of America, anxiety disorders are the most common mental illnesses in our country, afflicting about 40 million adults a year. And although effective treatment is available, only 36.9% of sufferers are treated. People may feel embarrassed about admitting that theyre anxious. They may be dismissive of their anxiety. Or, they may not be aware that frequent anxiety is a mental health problem. But awareness of your anxiety is the first step in getting treatment for itand in understanding its causes.