Anxiety Symptoms, and ways to deal with it
Suffering from anxiety, the symptoms, and ways to deal with it.
Do you suffer from anxiety disorder? Relax, as you are not alone!
According to the World health Organisation, Anxiety is the most common mental illness in the world. A survey was undertaken and it was found that
- 20% of adults experience a mental health problem, most commonly depression or anxiety.
- 70% who attempt suicide have an anxiety disorder.
Anxiety disorders – Social, general, Phobic, PTSD, OCD, Panic…
Anxiety does not limit you – only your choice can. You can live a great life. Fighting against anxiety can be disempowering and crippling.
Anxiety disorders even happens to well know people in the public domain, such as: Barbara Streisand, Whoopi Goldberg, Johnny Depp, Adele, Anushka Sharma, Susie O’ Neill, even the great Sigmund Freud!
Too much pressure and expectations from people and creating ‘right impressions’. To add to it are hectic working hours, bad diet and erratic lifestyles. Performance expectations be it in work or performing on stage can in itself causes anxiety before and after any event, movie, interview or projects. All these dynamics make it a rather anxiety provoking industry.
How do you spot anxiety?
- You start avoiding everyday activities because your levels of anxiousness have you on constant alert.
- Your heart starts pounding and you feel that it can pop out at any stage!
- Sweaty palms, excessive sweating under arms, along with general body temperature change that is obvious.
- Shortness of breath, Jittery and on edge
- Sleep is restless and you wake up feeling exhausted or you just can’t sleep at all, leading to insomnia and making poor judgements.
- Nothing makes sense anymore - you wonder will there ever be an end to this and will you ever recover and be normal again.
- You look back on your past and wonder where did I go wrong or how have I managed to land myself in this situation.
There are at least six types of anxiety
1. Social anxiety managed with avoidance
2. General anxiety Disorder – ongoing uncomfortable feelings that are not specifically related to one thing in particular.
3. OCD Obsessive Compulsive Disorder – repetitive thoughts, actions and compulsions.
4. Panic disorder – terror comes from nowhere, not sure what to do, breathing can become difficult and body temperature plummets and you find that you either want to run away or freeze on the spot. Some people find themselves feeling like they are outside of themselves looking in (dissociated)
5. PTSD – Post traumatic stress disorder – anxiety is driven as a result of a trauma that has happened in the past. The aspects of a trauma, as in a person gets triggered by certain sounds, smells, tastes, touch, that were also present in the trauma. The person can feel like they are right back in the trauma, living out of the body of that trauma. I.e. Car Accident, Birth Trauma, illness, accident, plane crash, aborted landing to name but a few…Phobias – fall under the category of anxiety be it specific or general. Fear of spiders, fear of a situation, fear of an object i.e. butterflies, buttons, Barbie dolls, animals, etc…
6. Phobias – fall under the category of anxiety be it specific or general. Fear of spiders, fear of a situation, fear of an object i.e. butterflies, buttons, Barbie dolls, animals, etc…
What are the causes of anxiety?
Causes can be anything from; your environment, an accident, a life event , a traumatic experience, your biochemistry- serotonin which is a mood regulator, vitamin B12 deficiency, Your reaction to fears in general, an over active amygdala. Some say it’s in the genes, it’s a learned behaviour from your family upbringing and so on…
What can you do about it?
Self-help – Exercise, mindfulness, meditation, good nutrition, supplements, EFT which is a tapping technique, self – hypnosis, CBT cognitive behavioural therapy, are some of many self-help techniques available.
Peer Support – share with a close friend, family member how you have been feeling, as it will help you and them understand and reach out in helping you. It’s normal to feel embarrassed and self-conscious as you share, yet it allows you to feel safe and comfortable, free from judgement. Be compassionate and have a patience with yourself as it can take a while to come through this, deepening on the type of anxiety you have and how it effects your life.
Minimise your caffeine intake, quit smoking, and drink in moderation, as this will help reduce the jitters, adrenaline flow and racing heart.
Develop skills to perform well in situations that make you anxious as competence leads to confidence.
Seek professional help – When one cannot do his/her daily functions, makes excuses to skip work, has disturbed sleep and eating patterns, begins to isolate them self socially, looks to alcohol medicines or smoking to reduce stress then it’s important to seek professional help! There are loads of stress and anxiety management professionals around to help you deal with and release high end anxiety.
Develop skills to perform well in situations you are anxious over. Competence leads to confidence:
It’s important to seek help!
While it’s natural and normal to feel anxious, it’s when it starts to take over your life and is more present with you in your everyday activities to the extent that you stop going out or attending gatherings because the fear is so strong.