Managing Anxiety

Tips To Help Manage Anxiety

A great deal of our ability to cure anxiety and excessive worry comes from our attitude. It’s helpful to have in your pocket, a few coping strategies. This article cites four ways you can start to manage your anxiety.

Assess your Life and Find What Causes your Anxiety

Maybe you are struggling with a difficult period financially or you are anticipating an upcoming crucial business meeting with dread.

A little tension every now and then in our lives can be useful. It can motivate us to budget our financial problems better, or spend more time preparing for that important work event.

Managing Your AnxietyBut if your stress is keeping you awake at night, than it’s likely it’s doing more harm than good. Whatever the issue causing your anxiety, you need to acknowledge, address and conquer it before you can move on to more positive thoughts and activities.

As soon as you figure out what’s bothering you, you can gain control of the situation and eliminate a large part of the anxiety by devising a concrete plan to tackle the issue.


Most people in the throes of an anxiety attack react by holding their breath or by taking rapid, shallow breaths. This causes heart rate, blood pressure, and stress hormone levels to rise, making the anxiety even worse.

Practicing daily relaxing breathing techniques will better prepare you to gain control of your breathing when you’re in the midst of an actual anxiety attack.

Practice by focusing on how you breathe – for several minutes, two to three times each day, take slow, deep breaths. If an anxiety attack does hit, concentrate on your breath in order to slow or even stop the attack before it spins out of control.


Exercise is a perfect way to recharge your body and clear your mind. This allows you to focus on your physical activities and spend less time dwelling on your problems.

In addition, exercise increases oxygen and blood flow throughout the body as it releases endorphin’s – the same hormones released during pleasurable moments.

All of this can improve your mood, letting you think through your troubles more logically. It also helps improve your self-esteem and confidence, now that you’re able to overcome your anxiety.

Change your AttitudeManaging Your Anxiety

A bad attitude can feed your anxiety by causing you to dwell only on the worst possible outcomes or scenarios. When you turn your negative outlook into a positive one, it makes it easier for you to overcome your worry. Channel your energy by figuring out how to conquer your anxiety, rather than obsessing over the problem.

Anxiety can be a positive thing. It can force you to focus on being your best in a stressful situation. However, too much of a good thing can be bad. Excessive anxiety interferes with your normal daily functions, your relationships, and your ability to sleep.

When working on how to overcome your anxiety, remember to practice these four simple steps:

  • Identify the cause
  • Breathe to relax and clear your mind
  • Exercise regularly
  • Keep a positive attitude

Do these steps and you will be on the road to curing your anxiety.

Anxiety Overview: A Look At Anxiety Disorders

Anxiety Overview: A Look At Anxiety Disorders

Anxiety Overview: A Look At Anxiety DisordersEveryone experiences feelings of stress every now and then. Stress can even be a positive response to some situations. This “flight or fight” response prepares the body to be alert and on edge when action is needed.

For example, if someone encounters an unfamiliar or threatening environment, he or she can be nervous, edgy, and anxious. This may allow that person to tackle whatever comes next. People who are anxious speaking in public or while taking an exam, rehearse or study to ensure they are equipped to take on the challenge. Stress also helps keep people safe in dangerous situations.

However, when excessive anxiety or fear prevents a person from living a normal, healthy life, it can become a problem. This can be a sign of an anxiety disorder. Fortunately, this is a very common condition which can be successfully treated.

Nearly 9% of Americans suffer from an anxiety disorder during some period of their lives. For a few, anxiety can be so debilitating they can’t leave their homes and are prevented from performing everyday tasks.

The term “anxiety” has been so overused recently that it’s at risk of losing its meaning. The words “anxiety” and “fear” have become nearly interchangeable. However, they’re actually two separate conditions. Anxiety describes multiple types of mental conditions characterized by an extreme amount of mental worry that appears for no reason. Fear, however, is an emotion that triggers anxiety.

What are the Different Types of Anxiety Disorders?

Anxiety disorders include a rather broad category of different medical conditions. Some of these conditions include:

What are the Symptoms of an Anxiety Disorder?

There are lots of symptoms that a person may demonstrate if he or she has an anxiety disorder. Here is a list of some common anxiety symptoms (not all of them need to be present for a doctor to diagnose an anxiety disorder):

  • Over the top worryingAnxiety Overview: A Look At Anxiety Disorders
  • Unreasonable fear of things or circumstances
  • Jumpiness/Inability to relax
  • Repeated re-living of a prior traumatic experience
  • Insomnia
  • A compulsive need to repeat an action over and over again
  • Shaking or trembling
  • Muscle pain
  • Perspiration/cold or clammy hands/light headed
  • Hyperactive/Rapid heartbeat
  • Exhaustion
  • Dry, cotton mouth
  • Tingling or numb extremities
  • Stomach cramps/nausea/loose bowels/difficulty swallowing
  • Hyperventilation

Generally, people who suffer from anxiety disorders are paranoid that they or their loved ones will be harmed or threatened in some way. They typically find it difficult to concentrate and are easily angered and impatient – regardless of the circumstance or habitual lateness.

While everyone experiences some of these symptoms at some point in their lives, it’s only a problem if they interfere with your daily life. If symptoms are too extreme for the situation that triggers them, it may be caused by an underlying anxiety disorder. You may want to explore options to treat the condition.

Treat Anxiety Yourself

How to Overcome Anxiety without Medication

We all worry on occasion. In fact, stress and worry can benefit us in certain situations: it can motivate us to meet critical deadlines, to study harder, or to take action on important problems that need addressing. But there are times when too much worrying can interfere with our ability to function on a daily basis. If you worry for hours and hours in a day, stress out every day, if it keeps you up at night, or if the stress prevents you from doing the things you normally enjoy, then such worry could be interfering in your life more than is healthy. Here are a few tips to try to treat anxiety yourself relief from anxiety.

Write it DownTreat Anxiety Yourself

If you find yourself agonizing over something that is worrying you, try to write it down. Self-observation and reflection can help you understand better the underlying issues that are causing your anxieties, which can help you create plans to overcome them. After a few days of this reflection, you may discover that the problems that are worrying you are not as big as you thought they were. You may even find that you don’t worry about them as frequently as you were before, which can further reduce the grip they have on you. Many people find that keeping journals or writing down their thoughts help them through anxiety-generating situations by letting them “release” the tensions they’ve created.

Put Things In Perspective

Once you have taken the time to write down your problems, put those anxieties into perspective. Ask yourself how probable it is that the problems you’re concerned about will actually come to pass. Ask yourself if you have really done all that you can to solve the problem. You may discover that you have more control of the situation than you realized; you may find out that you’ve exaggerated the negative aspects. These realizations help you focus on the deeper issues behind your anxiety, allowing you to gain a more positive perspective on things.

Make a Plan

Take control of your stress by writing down a concrete plan to address it. For every worry, write down two or three action items that you can do that let you overcome the stress or prevent the anxiety from starting. Just by outlining a plan, you can feel better and more in command of the situation.


Finally, relax. The physical symptoms of stress, such as headaches, muscle tension, or stomach upset, can be controlled by a variety of relaxation techniques. Practice a few of these simple ones, which can work wonders in relieving the physical symptoms of anxiety:

  • Deep breathing: Breathe in through your nose for a count of five. Hold for a count of five. Exhale through your mouth for a count of five. Breathing this way for five minutes helps your body release pent-up tension.Treat Anxiety Yourself
  • Progressive muscle relaxation: This is a technique in which you contract and hold tight each muscle for ten seconds. Then relax each subsequent muscle in your body. Start with your toes and feet, moving up each muscle in your body all the way to your face.
  • Visualization: Close your eyes and picture a calm, peaceful scene. Be as vivid and detailed as you can, complete with sounds and smells.
  • Yoga: Enroll in a yoga class to learn other exercises and meditation techniques that help teach you how to relax and calm your body.

If none of these suggestions help, or if your stress is too overwhelming, it may be time to seek professional guidance. A therapist can help you find clarity and perspective as well as help change negative thoughts into constructive, positive ones. If the anxiety is really severe, you may be suffering from generalized anxiety disorder. GAD is a condition that is best treated with a combination of medication and therapy. Symptoms of generalized anxiety disorder include:

  • Having problems concentrating
  • Problems sleeping
  • Overwhelming anxiety
  • Restlessness
  • Muscle tension
  • Fatigue
  • Irritability

Most everyday anxieties can be resolved without medical intervention. But it’s important to recognize when you can treat anxiety yourself versus when symptoms become debilitating and you need to seek real help.

Anxiety Attack Basics

Anxiety, it’s Symptoms, and How to Treat it

Stress is a natural human emotion – a survival mechanism that enables us to cope with threatening situations. Sometimes, however, our brains overreact to a non-threatening stimulus, causing us to respond to ordinary stimuli with panic attacks or anxiety.

Many situations can trigger our fight-or-flight response, from stressful events (an interview or speaking in public), physical trauma (an accident) or dietary causes (too much caffeine, alcohol or sugar). Every individual responds to these triggers differently.

Anxiety’s Toll On The Body

The physical manifestations of an acute anxiety attack or panic attack are often characterized by the following symptoms:Anxiety Attack Basics

  • Irrational fear
  • Pounding heart
  • Shortness of breath
  • Sweating
  • Shaking and trembling

The heart pounds faster as the body pulls blood away from the extremities in order to direct it towards the heart, lungs, and other vital organs. The lungs must now work harder in order to oxygenate this extra blood. This causes our breathing to become labored. Anxiety can also impact the gastrointestinal organs. Many people, when under stress for a long time, suffer from stomach cramps, diarrhea, and vomiting.

Even our skin can react to anxiety and stressful situations. You may find yourself sweating excessively, or having clammy palms or even hives. Hives frequently appear as red blotches on the face, back neck or arms.

Anxiety attacks can take a toll on our body. Those under a great deal of stress may spend their nights lying awake for hours worrying – making it hard to sleep. Too many restless nights can cause fatigue and drowsiness during the day, which may result in a decline in performance at work or school. This also impacts the sufferers mood, making it more short-tempered and irritable. Severe anxiety and stress can also cause headaches and muscle tension in the neck, back and shoulders.

Common Treatments

Doctors who treat anxiety will commonly prescribe medication. While these medications can help with the physical symptoms of anxiety, they don’t address the underlying issues that may be causing the symptoms.

In addition, these drugs often come with harmful, even dangerous side effects. Because of this, we recommend drug-free, alternative therapies and treatments. For most people, the most effective method ofAnxiety Attack Basics combating anxiety attacks is to combine a regimen of medication and some of the following behavioral therapies:

Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT) involves transforming negative thought processes into positive ones. CBT helps the patient work out the underlying issues causing the anxiety. It is often a lengthy process, but if combined with medication to control the immediate symptoms, such therapy can be an effective long-term treatment option.

Relaxation techniques such as breathing exercises and yoga, relax the mind and the body as well as help to lessen the physical tension that accompanies anxiety attacks. Hypnosis and acupuncture are also popular, whether as an alternative remedy or as a complement to conventional treatment.

Stress and anxiety manifests themselves in all kinds of ways, and can put quite a toll on our bodies and our minds. By taking a multi-pronged approach, we can alleviate some of the physical and emotional damage that anxiety can inflict.

Anti-Anxiety Medications

Commonly Prescribed Anti Anxiety Medications

Anxiety affects so many areas of our lives – it undermines self-esteem, has profound effects on performance at work or school, and can interfere with social relationships.

Help is out there. Anti-anxiety medications have been shown to be effective in reducing the physical and emotional symptoms of anxiety disorders, particularly when used in combination with therapy. Below are a few examples of the different types of anti-anxiety medications, their function, and their possible side effects.


Benzodiazepines, also called anxiolytics or tranquilizers, are the most common class of prescribed medication for anxiety. These drugs lower the activity in the central nervous system, thereby sedating and calming the patient. Benzodiazepines also act fast, making them ideal for people who suffer from panic attacks.

Some of the brand names for this type of drug include Ativan, Xanax, Klonopin, and Valium.

In addition to its use as an anti-anxiety drug, benzodiazepines are also used to treat:

  • Seizures (Klonopin, Valium, Tranxene)
  • Alcohol withdrawal symptoms (Librium)
  • Muscle spasms (Valium)
  • Agitation (Ativan)
  • Insomnia (Ambien, Dalmane, Doral, ProSom, Restoril)

Anti-Anxiety MedicationsBenzodiazepines come in short-acting and long-acting categories. The difference depends on how quickly they are metabolized by the body, how quickly they work, how long they’re effective, and whether the doses have a cumulative effect.

Long-acting benzodiazepines such as Xanax and Valium are typically more beneficial for long-term treatments of general anxiety.

When it’s desirable for the effects of medication to wear off quickly – for symptoms such as panic attacks and insomnia, short-acting versions like Restoril or Ambien are preferred.

Side Effects

Benzodiazepines are central nervous system depressants and should be used with caution. In addition to their sedative qualities, additional side effects may include:

  • Fatigue
  • Loss of coordination
  • Dizziness and light-headedness
  • Headaches
  • Weak muscles
  • Change in appetite
  • Dry mouth

Never drive or operate heavy machinery when taking benzodiazepines. These powerful drugs also carry a risk of dependency and abuse. Taking a higher dose is more likely to result in side effects and symptoms of withdrawal.

Gradually reducing the dose over a number of weeks can help lessen the chance of withdrawal symptoms such as nausea, seizures and muscle cramps.


Selective Serotonin Reuptake Inhibitors, or SSRIs, are the most popular antidepressants prescribed for anxiety. Some familiar SSRIs include Zoloft, Prozac and Paxil. Typically, low doses are prescribed to start, with the dosage increasing gradually. Other antidepressants used to treat anxiety include Tricyclic and MAOIs.

Side Effects

Antidepressants may cause severe side effects, including suicidal thoughts – particularly in children and adolescents. Additional side effects of SSRIs may include:

  • HeadachesAnti-Anxiety Medications
  • Drowsiness
  • Nausea
  • Jitteriness
  • Sexual dysfunction

Side effects of tricyclics may include:

  • Dry mouth
  • Blurred vision
  • Bladder problems
  • Sexual dysfunction
  • Constipation
  • Drowsiness

Specifically, MAOIs can also create a drastic increase in blood pressure, which may lead to stroke. Avoid any foods, medications and other substances which contain tyramine when taking MAOIs.


Beta-lockers, while most commonly prescribed to treat heart conditions and high blood pressure, can also be used to treat the physical symptoms of anxiety including trembling, sweating, and a racing heartbeat.

Side effects of beta-blockers may include:

  • Dizziness
  • Fatigue
  • Cold extremities
  • Weakness

You should not take beta-blockers if you have diabetes or asthma , as they may worsen these conditions.

Regardless which antidepressant you choose to treat anxiety, your doctor should supervise the treatment in order to avoid severe side effects and withdrawal symptoms.

People suffering from anxiety have hope. Anti-anxiety medications help alleviate the feelings of intense worry and fear related to anxiety, in addition to helping treat the physical symptoms. Many people with anxiety live full, productive, and happy lives with the help of medications like benzodiazepines, antidepressants, and beta-blockers. Check with your doctor to see if these drugs may be right for you.